TMC hosts alcohol awareness week

A mangled car, a wall of students’ stories about drugs and alcohol, and posters telling the negative effects of alcohol and drug use highlight Thurgood Marshall College’s Alcohol and Drug Awareness Week.

Anna MacMurdo
Guardian

The campaign to educate students about drinking takes place in front of the Thurgood Marshall College dean’s office from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. every day this week. It is held every year before the Sun God festival to “”give [students] the facts”” about alcohol and other drugs, according to Marshall Coordinator of Student Activities Vicki Kerba Miller.

“”We’re aware that students may choose to drink,”” Miller said. “”We want to give them alternatives.””

Student Legal Services, Psychological and Counseling Services, and Triton Taxi provided representatives and booths in front of the dean’s office.

“”Students who are walking by will casually get information,”” Miller said. “”We’ve had a great turnout.””

Even the UCSD Police Department was on hand to speak to students.

“”We’re just out here answering any questions on alcohol … just explaining the physical effects of alcohol on your system,”” said officer John Smart.

Some students tried on beer goggles, which are designed “”to simulate the perceptual effects of intoxication,”” said psychologist Jerry Phelps.

Students ineptly attempted to drive a remote-controlled toy car through a small course with the beer googles on.

The mangled car on exhibit “”gives a powerful message to students that these are some of the consequences”” if students drink and drive, Miller explained.

The car is so badly damaged that part of its roof is nearly perpendicular to the ground and the two front doors are nearly touching each other.

“”All I can tell is that there were at least three people in the car,”” Smart said. “”Nobody survived.””

Miller found out about the car from the towing company.

“”It was a real car that was involved with alcohol and abuse of alcohol,”” Miller said.

UCSD student Mike Waser said he found it “”very hard to understand”” why accidents like this happen when people know that they should not drink and drive.

“”I think that they aren’t planning this … but it happens anyway,”” Waser said.

Another exhibit outside the Marshall dean’s office uses cups to symbolize the average number of college students who die from incidents involving alcohol in a three-week period.

Upon reading a posted sign stating that four college students die from alcohol incidents every day, Marshall freshman Lindsay Tabaian said that she was not surprised.

“”I would think it would be more, actually,”” Tabaian said.

Tabaian said that she knows people who are planning to drink alcohol at the Sun God festival.

“”I don’t think that just by having an exhibit people will change their behavior,”” she said. “”People know this stuff already. People know that alcohol is dangerous.””