Alcohol Use and Abuse
"Perils of the College Drinking Culture” Forum
The Unified Prevention Coalition of Fairfax County (UPC) invites county high schools to join in a collaborative effort to plan and host a "Perils of the College Drinking Culture" forum for graduating seniors to prepare them and their parents for what they will face at college related to underage and binge drinking. View UPC Press Release, FCPS Press Release and Flier information.
The forum includes viewing of an award-winning powerful (and graphic) documentary, HAZE, followed by a panel discussion with local experts and extensive Q & A.
The forum was launched in 2010 by the UPC and its Countywide Initiative to Reduce Underage Drinking (CIRUD), in collaboration with the Fairfax County Police Department and others. Nearly 350 attended two such community forums that year and urged that the program be continued and expanded.
Five community forums were held in 2011 across Fairfax County in an effort to reach more students before they head off to college. Parents/guardians were encouraged to attend together with their child. Feedback was positive, with participants praising the film, HAZE, for raising the awareness of the college drinking culture and for the breadth of the panel that answered questions from the audience. Featured speakers and panelists included representatives from the Fairfax County Police Department, Inova Fairfax Hospital, and Office of the Commonwealth's Attorney for Fairfax County; a father of a student who died as a result of drinking at a college party; a mother of a college student who developed a drinking and drug problem; and college and graduate students.
Looking to spring and summer 2012, the Unified Prevention Coalition seeks to expand the program as part of an ongoing effort by county leaders to address the health and legal risks associated with underage and binge drinking.
"We are inviting high school principals and PTSAs to join in putting this event on at their particular high school so that we can expand the reach," said Sara Freund, chair of UPC's Countywide Initiative to Reduce Underage Drinking.
The UPC expects to offer several community "Perils of the College Drinking Culture" programs as well.
For more information, contact Sara Freund.
"This program should be extended across Virginia, in every community."
"HAZE should be required viewing for all high school students. It is a powerful movie."