Home Virginia universities, community college recognized for substance use prevention efforts
Schools, Virginia

Virginia universities, community college recognized for substance use prevention efforts

Crystal Graham
teen alcohol
(© stokkete – stock.adobe.com)

Five Virginia college campuses were recognized for their commitment to furthering student substance use education, prevention recovery and intervention efforts.

The Virginia Higher Education Substance Use Advisory Committee has recognized James Madison University, Longwood University, the University of Mary Washington, Virginia Commonwealth University and Wytheville Community College.

The annual VHESUAC campus recognition program is designed to publicly recognize college and university campuses across the Commonwealth that are implementing the statewide initiatives to stem substance use on university and college campuses. These have included a variety of efforts ranging from recovery programs like “Rams in Recovery” at VCU to Good Samaritan and Medical Amnesty initiatives at UMW and JMU, which offer medical help to students who need it due to alcohol intoxication or use of drugs by removing impediments to seeking such assistance.

“The negative consequences of substance misuse impact Virginia’s college students, their families and friends, and the community-at-large daily, and alcohol continues to remain the most used drug on college campuses,” said Virginia ABC Adult Education and Prevention Coordinator Chris Young. “The toll of misuse on the intellectual and social lives of students is enormous. Without partnerships and support at the local and state levels, colleges and universities have a limited capacity to address the problem of substance misuse.”

Created by Virginia’s General Assembly in 2018, VHESUAC is comprised of representatives from public and private universities and colleges, student leaders, state agencies and statewide partners in substance misuse prevention appointed by the Virginia Alcoholic Beverage Control Authority Board to collaborate to reduce college substance misuse and advocate for policies and practices that are science-based.

Crystal Graham

Crystal Graham

Crystal Abbe Graham is the regional editor of Augusta Free Press. A 1999 graduate of Virginia Tech, she has worked for nearly 25 years as a reporter and editor for several Virginia publications, written a book, and garnered more than a dozen Virginia Press Association awards for writing and graphic design. She was the co-host of "Viewpoints," a weekly TV news show, and co-host of Virginia Tonight, a nightly TV news show. Her work on "Virginia Tonight" earned her a national Telly award for excellence in television.