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Summit To Rid Students Of Abuse Excuses

Aug. 23, 2010
SHSU Media Contact: Jennifer Gauntt

ADAI 2010 Summit LogoNo excuse will be off limits when the SHSU Alcohol and Drug Abuse Initiative hosts its fifth annual Alcohol and Drug Summit on Sept. 10.

This year’s one-day event, designed to raise awareness of the multi-faceted problems associated with substance use and abuse while strengthening healthy attitudes and ultimately achieving positive behaviors, will include 18 panel sessions and a keynote lecture on a wide range of topics.

Registration for the 2010 “No Excuses” summit, open to members of both the university and Huntsville communities, will begin at 8 a.m., with panel sessions beginning at 9 a.m.

“The purpose of the summit is to create a unique venue that will allow participants to interact with experts in the field of alcohol and drug education,” said Rosanne Keathley, ADAI coordinator. “We hope to provide participants with the knowledge and skills they need to make responsible decisions regarding substance use.”

The lunch-time keynote address will be delivered by Mark Sterner, who has shared his story of how one bad decision changed his life with more than two million people nationwide.

In his “DUI: A Powerful Lesson,” Sterner describes how he and his four fraternity brothers, also his best friends, decided on the last night of their spring break trip that the least drunk would drive home.

When Sterner awoke the next morning, three of the men were dead and he found himself facing three counts of DUI manslaughter, ultimately being sent to prison.

Throughout the day-long summit, participants can attend interactive sessions covering topics such as the cost of alcohol and drug abuse, prescription drugs, supplements, the effect of substance use on brain function, gay and lesbian issues and substance use, alcohol laws, the university’s disciplinary process, risk management, sex and safety. Attendees can also assess their own drinking patterns with alcohol screenings.

Also among the topics discussed will be medical amnesty and the new Good SAMaritan program, designed to teach those who were afraid to help someone who had consumed too much alcohol or pills because of their own age or impairment what steps to take.

Presentations will be given by university professors, a licensed nurse, the Texas Alcohol and Beverage Commission, victim advocates and members of the University Police Department and Counseling Center, as well as those who have faced alcohol-related tragedies.

Among those are Nicole Martingano, a University of Florida graduate who was the victim of a drunk driver.

Martingano’s car was hit head-on by an intoxicated university student who was speeding and suddenly swerved into her lane.

Her case was assigned to a homicide detective because doctors and emergency personnel believed she died on impact; however, she survived.

Registration for the summit is free. Registration forms can be printed from http://www.shsu.edu/adai or can be obtained at the Student Activities office, in Lowman Student Center Suite 328; the health and kinesiology office, in Health and Kinesiology Center Room 207; the Enrollment Management Office, in Estill Building Room 314; the Student Health Center; or the Recreational Sports Expansion Area, in the HKC.

Forms can be returned before the summit date to any of those locations.

All participants will receive a T-shirt upon completion of four summit sessions, various door prizes and the chance to win an iPod Touch and other prizes provided by Best Buy in Conroe.

Students who attend the summit will also be able to earn co-curricular transcript credit and will have the opportunity to win prizes either as an individual or for their student organizations.

For more information, contact Keathley at 936.294.1171 or e-mail hpe_rsk@shsu.edu.



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