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UNT Dallas offers survey for Alcohol Awareness Month

UNT Dallas offers survey for Alcohol Awareness Month

April 09
21:45 2013

Andrew Freeman / Staff Writer

The UNT Dallas campus will provide free screenings and psychological educational information through Thursday during this week’s National Alcohol Awareness Week.

Students will be able to anonymously fill out a screening that covers the use of alcohol and the dangers associated with drinking. Depending on how the results turn out, the UNT Dallas campus could create groups like Alcoholics Anonymous for students.

“We are trying to be very proactive,” Student Wellness Coordinator at UNT Dallas Jennifer Bradford said.

Bradford said the screenings will help students become more informed about alcohol responsibility.

“College students all across the nation struggle with using alcohol responsibly,” Bradford said. “They’re not really aware, and don’t have the knowledge required to [use alcohol responsibly].”

The screenings come from kits prepared by College Response, an organization that deals with substance abuse. Bradford said a screening normally takes three to five minutes to fill out.

“You can receive feedback if you want, and it helps us obtain information about the school,” Bradford said.

The screening covers a student’s use of alcohol, and are taken partially by volunteer students who are majoring in counseling at the campus.

Chair and professor of counseling and human services Jennifer Baggerly said the screenings should get rid of certain stereotypes that surround college drinking.

“They’re talking to students and getting them to not be embarrassed if they need help,” Baggerly said. “We try to communicate that most college students, contrary to popular opinion, aren’t getting drunk every weekend.”

Baggerly said the myth of drinking often could stem from irresponsible drinking from college students.

“It’s a myth they’re pressured to live up to,” Baggerly said. “Being screened is helpful because many people are not aware that their behavior is not the norm.”

Business undeclared junior Shelby Garry said she thinks students focus too much on alcohol.

“People will drink when they go off to school,” she said. “It’s part of the school experience, I think.”

However, she believes alcohol education is important.

“If you’re smart you would know not to completely abuse it, not do dumb stuff when intoxicated and know your limit,” Garry said. “But there’s a good amount of dumb people who do abuse it and do very stupid things that ruin it for those who just drink for fun and not to get completely drunk.”

UNT has also taken measures to educate incoming freshmen about alcohol. Before any new student is allowed to take courses at the university, they are required to complete an online program called AlcoholEdu for College. More than 500 universities use the same program.

According to the university website, 66 percent of those who completed the program said they learned something they didn’t know about alcohol. Alcohol poisoning could also be identified by 77 percent of those students.

At the Denton campus, there are usually screenings every month at the Health and Wellness Center. One will be held today, from 3 to 7 p.m. and on April 18 from 9:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.

Screenings on the UNT Dallas campus are today from 1 to 4 p.m. and tomorrow from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. and 4 to 6 p.m.

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