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Alcohol Abuse Prevention Initiatives 

The nature of alcohol's relationship with our students is an important dialogue that needs to continue in our community.

Over the course of the past two years, the College has implemented numerous initiatives, most based on benchmarking and best practices--this includes, but is not limited to, much of the research conducted by the Committee on Campus, Culture, Conduct, and Civility (4C's).  The investigative efforts expended by the 4C's committee are in concert with the research reported by the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism. For more information regarding research-based recommendations and strategies, please refer to the NIAAA's college drinking prevention website at NIAAA's college drinking prevention Web site.  We continue to modify our programs and interventions as we receive feedback from stakeholders and participants.  We also review best practices regularly to ensure that our initiatives are current.

While these methods represent a bold, conscientious effort to curb a tradition of alcohol misuse, it is too early to measure the overall effectiveness. Below is a brief supply of information concerning our attempts to mitigate student alcohol abuse and educate our students regarding this grave issue. Please know that this information is not a full report; rather, it is intended to be utilized as a point of reference.

The following methods are currently in effect and have been utilized for collecting data regarding and assessing alcohol usage at Providence College in recent years:

  • The CORE Drug and Alcohol Survey (administered bi-yearly starting in 2009)

  • Association of College and University Housing Officers - International Educational Benchmarking Survey (ACUHO-I EBI; administered tri-yearly since 2007)

  • Cooperative Institutional Research Program (CIRP) (2007-present)

  • The Clery Act (since 1990)

  • Alcohol intervention programs: Brief Motivational Interviews (BMI), CHOICES, and Brief Alcohol Screening Interventions for College Students (B.A.S.I.C.S.; 2008- present)

  • AlcoholEDU (Fall 2010)

  • E-chug (2010)

  • A compendium of relevant data compiled from year to year by the following offices: residence life, security, student conduct, personal counseling, student activities, student health, off-campus living and emergency management. These data are available via the respective offices.  (2009-present)

Since the fall of 2007 the following initiatives have been adopted and executed:

  • ‚ÄčEvidence-Based Alcohol Interventions for both judicially mandated and self-identified at-risk students
    • CHOICES Program
    • BMIs
    • B.A.S.I.C.S.
  • Campus Facilities & Social Space
    • Creation of 24-hour co-educational study and social space in the Aquinas Lounge and the Slavin Center
    • Creation of PC Perk, with hours extending to 2am on weeknights and 3am on weekends
    • Creation of additional lounge space in the traditional residence halls
  • Residence Hall Environment Initiatives

    • Increased number of evening, late-night and weekend programming
    • "Coffeehouse" event offered from 10pm to 2am every Friday of the academic year
    • Class-year specific housing (freshmen residence halls, sophomore floors and junior/senior housing)
    • The following traditional residence halls expressly prohibit alcohol within/on its premises: Raymond, McVinney, Guzman, McDermott
    • All forms of hard alcohol are prohibited in all residence halls, suites and apartment complexes
    • Limiting the quantity of alcohol allowed in residence facilities per of-age student
    • Implementation of party registration protocol and training of party-hosts in TIPS (Training for Intervention Procedures)
    • Limiting access to alcohol by underage students who are in the presence of students that are of  legal age in the common areas of the suites and apartments
  • Office of Off-Campus Living

    • Red Cup Campaign

    • Bolstered collaborative efforts between Providence College Security, Providence Police, local area institutions and the Providence neighborhood to minimize alcohol abuse off campus

    • House to house visits to educate students regarding alcohol policies and state laws

    • Mandatory meeting with all juniors slated to move off campus to inform them of policies and state laws prior to their move

  • Staff Training and Development Initiatives
    • Training of professional staff in Motivational Interviewing techniques and Brief Alcohol Intervention strategies by Dr. George Parks, Associate Director of Addictive Behaviors Research Center at the University of Washington
    • Resident Assistants and Simply Healthy Peer Educators trained to facilitate the CHOICES program targeting all incoming students
    • TIPS training (Training for Intervention Procedures) received by all McPhail's staff and Residence Life professionals
    • Residence Life & Security personnel certified by Management of Aggressive Behavior (MOAB)
    • All incoming students are required to attend sexual assault workshops that seek to educate them regarding sexual assault and the impact alcohol has in influencing their behavior as it relates to this grave issue
  • Emergency Response Protocols
    • Hall Directors & Resident Assistants engage in nightly surveillance of the interior and exterior of the residence halls to enforce policy and uphold the safety and security of the resident community
    • Increased guidelines for the assessment and transport of intoxicated students by medical professionals
    • Mandatory and immediate evaluation of student disposition of all alcohol-related transported students by Gateway mental health professionals before returning to campus
    • Mandatory session with the Substance Abuse Clinical Counselor for all transported students upon return to campus
    • Mandatory parent notification after alcohol transports
    • Caller Amnesty -- A student who calls for medical assistance on behalf of another person due to use or abuse of alcohol or drugs will not be subject to judicial action for the following conduct violation(s) only: use, possession, or distribution of alcoholic beverages.
  • Professional/Departmental Collaborations
    • Working partnership with Residence Life and the Office of Safety and Security to include residence hall "liaison" assignments that perform surveillance during the evenings and early morning in concert with the building/area's hall director to enforce policy and build community
    • Bolstered relationship with the Office of Health and Wellness to increase the number of on-campus alcohol abuse reduction opportunities and programs
    • Cross-departmental collaborative late-night weekend programming through the PC After Hours Committee to provide healthy alternatives to students
    • SAIL provides a significant number of late night and early morning activities and programs on weekends and week nights
    • Alcohol Awareness Week
  • Availability of alcohol on campus for of-age students
    • Banning all hard alcohol within all residence halls and apartment complexes except for mixed drinks made by certified bartenders at McPhail's entertainment facility
    • Eliminating the sale of alcohol at McPhail's entertainment facility on Thursday evenings (thereby limiting the availability of alcohol to Friday and Saturday evenings and occasional Monday night football games
  • Student Conduct
    • Increased educational sanctions  related to alcohol offenses such as: research papers, reflection papers, punitive damages, motivational interviewing, probation, and community service hours and projects
    • Publicly informing students of all policies related to alcohol utilizing various marketing approaches and attending Orientation , Student Congress meetings, and Athletics
    • Offer 1 hour alcohol education program facilitated by the Health and Wellness Educator
    • Hazing workshops facilitated by an outside expert were mandatorily attended by staff, coaches, student athletes and student leaders

 Dr. Steven A. Sears
Associate Vice President/Dean of Students

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