Syracuse University recognized with top honors in national award for alcohol education and prevention efforts
Syracuse University recognized with top honors in national award for alcohol education and prevention effortsMarch 30, 2006Sara Millersemortim@syr.edu
Syracuse University’s AlcoholEdu Team has been chosen the recipient of the 2006 Prevention Excellence Award with Highest Honors, the most prestigious award presented by Outside The Classroom, developers of the AlcoholEdu for College program. SU is the inaugural winner of this national honor, which includes a $10,000 donation to the University’s general scholarship fund, for success in significantly influencing the quality of student life through comprehensive alcohol education and prevention efforts. SU was the only award recipient acknowledged with Highest Honors status.
A formal award presentation took place at the 88th Annual Conference of the National Association of Student Personnel Administrators (NASPA), which was held in Washington, D.C., in March. Outside the Classroom CEO Busteed will also visit SU on April 5 to personally present the award to SU’s AlcoholEdu Team. The event, which is open to members of the University community, will begin at 1 p.m. in Room 204B of Maxwell Hall. There will be a live demonstration of AlcoholEdu and an “Ask the Experts” question-and-answer session.
“In choosing Syracuse University as their top honoree of 2006, the prevention and education experts at Outside the Classroom have rightly recognized the many talented student affairs professionals who contribute to the wellness of Syracuse University students,” says Barry L. Wells, senior vice president and dean of student affairs. “I am immensely proud of our people for the efforts they have made in this campus’s awareness of alcohol issues. It is fitting that they receive this national recognition.”
SU’s AlcoholEdu program is led by Dessa Bergen-Cico, associate dean of students and director of the Substance Abuse Prevention and Health Enhancement (S.A.P.H.E) Office, and includes Michelle Brisson, assistant to the associate dean of students; S.A.P.H.E
Associate Director Susan Scholl; and S.A.P.H.E Options counselors James Byrne and Matthew Kiechle.
According to Brandon Busteed, founder and CEO of Outside The Classroom: “Syracuse University’s ability to develop, implement and sustain comprehensive alcohol prevention and education clearly demonstrates a commitment to creating a healthier, safer campus. Most importantly, it is a testament to SU’s investment in creating optimal conditions in which students can learn.”
As part of SU’s new-student orientation program, “Syracuse Welcome: A Slice of SU Life,” all first-year students are required to participate in the AlcoholEdu online alcohol education program before arriving on campus. Used on more than 450 campuses nationwide, AlcoholEdu for College is an online, non-opinionated prevention program that integrates proven prevention techniques into a science-based curriculum. The multimedia program aims to help students make safer, healthier decisions about alcohol. Third-party research by Andrew Wall at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign has found that college students who completed AlcoholEdu experienced approximately 50 percent fewer negative health, social and academic consequences than students who had not taken AlcoholEdu. SU’s own assessment also shows that the course is effective in improving alcohol-related knowledge and reducing negative alcohol related consequences among students who successfully complete the course. In 2006, SU will offer the parents of incoming first-year students the AlcoholEdu course to take on their own, to facilitate dialogue about alcohol between parents and students.
An independent national panel of scholars reviewed applications for the Outside The Classroom Award based on five criteria: implementation practices, communication, evaluation, programmatic linkages and organizational linkages.
“This is the result of the hard work and commitment of the amazing team in the Substance Abuse and Health Enhancement Office, the Division of Student Affairs and the University as a whole,” says Bergen-Cico.
S.A.P.H.E is a principal unit of the Division of Student Affairs, which works to become the international leader in student-centered, co-curricular education, demonstrating a commitment to collaborative learning, citizen development and the celebration of diversity.