Archive for September, 2012

[CR] Pres. Barry Seaman on WWBY Baltimore

Thursday, September 27th, 2012

Barry Seaman, [CR] President and author of Binge: Campus Life in An Age of Disconnection and Excess, participated in a conversation with WWBY Baltimore and David Jernigan, associate professor and director of the Center on Alcohol Marketing and Youth, John’s Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. Seaman and Jernigan were prompted to have a frank conversation on the realities of alcohol on college campuses after 28 University of Maryland students were hospitalized for binge drinking during the first two weeks of the semester. Although The Amethyst Initiative has been met with opposition, WWBY choose to host this conversation because of the obvious disconnect between the legal drinking age and the implications it has on student, and adult, health.

We’ll be posting a synopsis of the conversation tomorrow, but we invite you to listen now and join a conversation about the radio program on Facebook tomorrow. Click here to listen. 

Thursday, September 27th, 2012

[CR] President will be a guest on Midday with Dan Rodicks today! Listen to Barry speak about binge drinking, campus culture and MLDA 21 today!

Listen here!

New York schools take three pronged approach

Friday, September 21st, 2012

The University of Buffalo’s Research Institute on Addictions plans to join forces with other institutions in the New York area to tackle college substance abuse. The group will seek to educate students, health care and mental health workers, and educators about the dangers of binge drinking. The RIA’s approach hopes to open a dialogue about the current knowledge on binge drinking, especially between students and parents.

To this end, the RIA will host a two day conference on the challenges related to reducing substance abuse with the intention of forming a consortium of New York area schools to further examine the issues.

The conference will bring together front-line staff from throughout the SUNY system who grapple with the real problems of college students’ alcohol and substance use and abuse, and the researchers who seek to develop and evaluate substance-use prevention and intervention strategies. It also will provide an opportunity for participants to present information about their programs and to discuss issues regarding the startup and operation of effective programs.

Even more importantly, however, the conference will explore the potential for developing a multi-campus network of researchers and practitioners across New York State to address excessive college student substance use.

Choose Responsibility will continue to follow the RIA’s progress throughout the fall.

For more information, click here.

Military Substance Abuse on the Rise

Monday, September 17th, 2012

A recent report by the Institute of Medicine will force the US military to recognize that substance abuse among its men and women is on the rise. Specifically, perscription drug abuse has increased from 2%-11% from 2005-2008, and one in four soldiers who served in Iraq or Afghanistan last year admitted to binge drinking. Since 2001, prescription painkillers have become increasingly common; less than one million prescriptions were provided in 2001 and more than five million were provided last year. Binge drinking rates are highest among Marines (60%), and binge drinking rates are higher in the military than among the civilian population.

The Institute of Medicine’s report encouraged the Pentagon to revaluate access to alcohol on military bases, improve treatment programs, and make confidential counseling more readily available.

Read the full article here.

Cornell President on Student Health

Wednesday, September 12th, 2012

Cornell President David J. Skorton recently wrote a candid synopsis for the Huffington Post regarding the ways in which colleges can improve the health and wellbeing on their charges. Skorton’s essay focuses on four problem areas for students: high risk drinking, hazing, mental health problems, and concussions (primarily in athletes). Hazing and mental health problems, one could argue, are also linked to high risk drinking.

Skorton claims that although curfews and dress codes have gone by the wayside, colleges must maintain their responsibility to give students freedom within a framework. That is, they must hold students accountable for their actions yet allow students to make their own choices. The problem areas Skorton discusses are fodder for debate on the age of majority and the age in which students can reasonably make their own choices.

College by the Numbers

Tuesday, September 4th, 2012

10: Number of years since the National Institute on Alcohol and Alcoholism identified college binge drinking as a serious threat to students

32: Number of schools partaking in the National College Health Improvement Project’s Learning Collaborative on High Risk Drinking, a comprehensive approach to harm reduction

34: Percentage of colleges that have banned alcohol since the NIAA announcement

136: Number of Amethyst Initiative signatories

747: Number of college presidents surveyed by the Center for Science in the Public Interest. The survey found that most colleges had implemented some form of alcohol education.

1800+: Number of college students who die annually after binge drinking.

100: Percentage of preventable alcohol related deaths on college campuses