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Final alcohol coalition workshop focuses on responsibilities

Friday, Feb. 29, 2008, 1 to 5 p.m. Wu Dining Hall, Butler College
"Responsibilities Regarding High-Risk Drinking" is the topic for the third workshop sponsored by the Princeton Alcohol Coalition on Friday, Feb. 29.

The event will run from 1 to 5 p.m. in the Wu Dining Hall at Butler College and will be followed by a reception. Snacks will be provided, and each participant will receive a T-shirt that reads "I was part of the conversation. I am part of the solution."

The workshop is the final in a series on high-risk alcohol use among students sponsored by the coalition, which was formed in November by the Healthier Princeton Advisory Board. The group is gathering information to write a strategic plan on how to deal with the issue.

Open to faculty, staff, alumni and community partners, the first workshop in the series on "Reasons and Ways to Address High-Risk Drinking" on Feb. 15 attracted 80 people. About 100 participated in the second event a week later on "Structures That Affect High-Risk Drinking."

Each workshop has featured a speaker to address the specific theme, and then has included two break-out sessions to encourage small-group discussion. Groups then write their best two ideas on posters for further comment and discussion during the receptions, which are intended to continue the conversation and promote feedback. Reports will be written summarizing each workshop.

The speakers for the third workshop will be: Jeff Nunokawa, professor of English and master of Rockefeller College; and junior John Baker, a member of one of the planning groups for the workshops.

Students are strongly urged to attend, lending their voices to the conversations and to the outcomes of the strategic planning process.

"This is really an amazing opportunity for us to have a say on an issue that affects us directly," said junior Agatha Offorjebe, who co-chairs the coalition with Sanjeev Kulkarni, professor of electrical engineering and master of Butler College. "It is important that students are active participants in these series of conversations, as what comes out of these workshops will impact how this campus addresses issues of high-risk alcohol use."

Those interested in attending should RSVP with their name and class year or affiliation to acc@princeton.edu or (609) 258-5980. Undergraduates will be given seating priority, although the coalition will try to accommodate all, according to space limitations.

Made up mostly of students but also including faculty and staff, the coalition has been charged by the Healthier Princeton Advisory Board with taking a comprehensive look at issues related to high-risk alcohol use by undergraduates. The group will gather information from a variety of sources over the next few months and present a draft strategic plan at the board's May 9 meeting.

In addition to the workshops, the group has determined that the strategic plan will be informed by the work of a planning group that took place last fall; data collected about Princeton; best practices at other colleges and universities; and stakeholder meetings with campus and community partners that are taking place this spring.

More information is available on the coalition's website.

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