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Some don’t know when they have a problem

Alcohol and drug abuse at college campuses is an issue that needs to be examined, said Mike Green, president and founder of Collegiate Consultants on Drugs and Alcohol.

Green, an advocate for drug and alcohol education on college campuses, spoke Tuesday night at the Special Events Center about alcohol and substance abuse and the dangers they entail.

Green is a former educator, coach and athlete with many years of experience dealing with alcohol and substance abuse, which serves as a basis for his lectures. Green also has the experience of being a recovering alcoholic, which gives him the credibility of knowing first hand what these students are going through.

But Green said that his motive for the program was different than previous speakers who have discussed the issue.

“As an educator, I do this program with a unique purpose,” said Green. “I want to teach students that you don’t have to be an alcoholic to have an alcohol problem.”

The major problem that students have is that they don’t believe they have a drinking problem,” said Green. “The main fact is that students don’t really know what a drinking problem is.”

Green said he coined the phrase “one-night problem” to address drinking issues.

A one-night problem is an incident from one night that can have a secondary, lifelong consequence, he said.

Green gave an example of this when he spoke about a student at George Washington University who had a one-night problem with lasting repercussions.

“A drunk, straight-A student was walking around in the dorms and kicked in a door to a stall in a bathroom,” said Green. “There was another student in this stall who had to receive 16 stitches as a result of this drunk student kicking in the door. Unlucky for this student, the university has an alcohol policy where if you hurt another student while you are drunk, you are expelled from the university for one year.”

As a result, Green said, the student was stripped of $26,000 in scholarships.

Green said moments such as these can be prevented if students would supervise friends so they don’t get hurt. Green said this could possibly prevent fights, stop friends from drinking too much and stop students from driving under the influence.

Green said that students need to know the four stages of drinking so that they may be aware of where they stand.

“When you count up the drinks — the number of drinks that students have on holidays, weeknights, weekends, etc., in a month — students tend to fall into certain stages of drinking,” said Green. “These stages range from the first stage where students have 0 – 6 drinks and can be classified as social drinkers to the fourth stage where students drink more than 200 drinks and can be classified as having a serious problem.”

Green said what students should learn from his lecture is the concept of supervision.

“The most important thing students should take from this lecture is that they must take on the role of spotters, so that we can ease the problem of alcohol abuse, said Green.”