Public Affairs, The California State University

Commitment Bolsters Alcohol Awareness Programs

CSU Chancellor Timothy P. White with Scott and Julia Starkey. The Starkeys created Aware Awake Alive in the legacy of their son, Carson.
CSU Chancellor Timothy P. White with Scott and Julia Starkey. The Starkeys created Aware Awake Alive in the legacy of their son, Carson.

CSU student affairs professionals and student leaders gathered at the Chancellor’s Office January 30-31 to enhance education efforts about the deadly consequences of alcohol poisoning. The event marked the beginning of a system-wide partnership with Aware Awake Alive, a peer-to-peer alcohol education program that empowers students to make the right call when faced with an alcohol poisoning emergency. Aware Awake Alive complements the university’s ongoing efforts to encourage safe, healthy behaviors among students, and will be incorporated into existing alcohol educational efforts to support student success.

Aware Awake Alive was created by Scott and Julia Starkey in the legacy of their son Carson, a Cal Poly San Luis Obispo freshman who died of alcohol poisoning in 2008. Last year, CSU Chancellor Timothy P. White committed to implement the program throughout the CSU’s 23 campuses.

The non-profit organization aims to prevent alcohol poisoning deaths by educating young people about the associated symptoms and encouraging responsibility in situations where alcohol is consumed. Its powerful student-oriented peer-to-peer approach includes a toolbox of presentation and print materials developed especially for administrators, student leaders, Greek life, housing and other campus groups.

Aware Awake Alive’s video, presentation and print tools are becoming framework materials for new alcohol awareness programs and helping to bolster existing efforts throughout the CSU.

During the conference, staff and students shared how they have been using the toolbox and discussed how it can enhance current campus initiatives. Chancellor White also addressed the group about the CSU’s commitment to creating a healthy and safe learning environment for students.

“We need to spend time to focus on this issue and take a closer look at how we can use this tool to minimize tragedy and empower students to be responsible and make the right call,” said White.

The CSU is committed to strengthening student success by fighting alcohol, tobacco and other drug abuse on and off the college campus through education, collaboration and cooperation. Find out more about the CSU’s annual Alcohol and Other Drugs Educational Conference, April 3-4, 2014 at CSU Channel Islands and other prevention programs, activities and initiatives at www.calstate.edu/ATOD.