College students are often stereotyped as binge drinkers, partiers and just an overall reckless group of people. For a long time, prevention education and resources missed this group, but that’s changed.
"Since prevention has really moved onto the college campus we have seen a decrease in student deaths, we’ve seen an increase in student graduation rates and an overall decrease in the amount of students that graduate in a four or five year time span as opposed to taking longer than that," said Joan Masters, senior coordinator with Missouri Partners in Prevention .
Partners in Prevention is a coalition of 12 public universities and provide training and financial assistance for campus responsible decision-making programs. For their efforts, Partners in Prevention recently won the 2008 National Exemplary Award for Innovative Substance Abuse Prevention Programs, Practices, and Policies from the National Association of State Alcohol and Drug Abuse Directors. With the award comes a $1,500 mini-grant to continue its efforts.
"We’ll continue to show the rest of state of Missouri and the nation that college prevention is an incredibly important part of the life span of someone," Masters said. "We really want to make sure that people understand that college students are an incredibly gifted group of students and we want them to make healthier and safe choices and most of them are doing that."