National Collegiate Alcohol Awareness Week Starts Today

Posted: October 21, 2002 at 1:00 am, Last Updated: November 30, -0001 at 12:00 am

George Mason’s Fairfax Campus observes National Collegiate Alcohol Awareness Week Oct. 21 to 25 with programs and activities including a Driving Under the Influence (DUI) simulation; “You the Man,” a performance that examines drinking and relationships; and free HIV testing. “High-risk drinking by college students is associated with negative consequences such as assault, property damage and vandalism, academic problems, excessive noise, and injuries,” says Kara Bowling, Substance Abuse Programs and Services coordinator. “National Collegiate Alcohol Awareness Week is a timely reminder for students and others to assess their drinking choices and any resulting consequences.”

Free anonymous online alcohol use screening is available at a Johnson Center kiosk staffed by Substance Abuse Programs and Services peer educators and members of Psi Chi, the Psychology Honor Society, Monday through Thursday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Students can stop by to complete the screening and/or participate in an alcohol trivia contest for prizes. Free Orasure HIV testing, a confidential, “no needles” oral test, is offered on Tuesday and Wednesday from 1 to 4 p.m. in SUB II, and Thursday from 7 to 9 p.m. in the Eisenhower residence hall.

“You the Man” is a provocative and humorous one-man show that addresses unhealthy relationships, dating violence, and sexual assault. A performance and discussion for women is scheduled for Wednesday at 7 p.m. and Thursday at 9 p.m. A performance and discussion for men is scheduled for Wednesday at 9 p.m. and Thursday at 7 p.m. All performances are held in the Johnson Center Dewberry Hall.

Statistics show that each year approximately 70,000 students ages 18 to 24 are victims of alcohol-related sexual assault or date rape. “The link between substance abuse and high-risk sexual behavior is significant,” explains Bowling. “Alcohol lowers inhibitions, reduces the efficiency of information processing, and allows simple cues that instigate behavior such as sexual arousal to be processed while blocking the processing of more complex cues such as the possibility of contracting a sexually transmitted disease.”

Finally, an interactive DUI simulation featuring goggles that approximate what a person sees and feels under different levels of intoxication will take place on the Presidents Park Lawn on Friday at 7 p.m., followed by the outdoor movie, “Blow.” For more information, visit the web site (user ID: Mason), or contact Bowling at (703) 993-3687 or kbowlin2@gmu.edu.

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