Editorial: No summer substance abuse
Tuesday, May 10, 2005,
05/10/05 - This
summer, please don't abuse any substances. Don't drink too much alcohol or
do illegal drugs. It will only lead to trouble in the future.
This warning is especially relevant following last week's
marijuana-related felony and misdemeanor arrests of University of Rhode
Island students in Narragansett. Students should realize that they are old
enough to be held accountable for their actions. Although some would say
marijuana use by college students is a standard, and should not be harshly
penalized, it is still against the law and students are still subject to
College is a time when students become adults and learn to function in
society, and drinking alcohol responsibly may be all right in that
society. But don't get out of hand. According to the Harvard School of
Public Health, alcohol abuse is a significant problem on college campuses
and it is getting worse. However, URI is different from the norm and is
one out of only nine schools to reduce incidences of binge drinking.
In the early 1990s, alcohol was a problem at URI and it was named the top
'party school' in the country. But now, just because it is a 'dry' campus
does not mean the problem is solved.
The substance abuse recovery room proposed last week by a URI student is a
great idea and should improve the welfare of the community. Even if it
only helps one student, which is a definite underestimate, it will have
been worth the effort. The university has a strong background in substance
abuse help - including having a president who was nationally honored for
abuse prevention - but the university should always search for new ways to
The new program might not have any affect on students' grades, but it will
help students. In Thursday's Cigar a former Community College of Rhode
Island student said she was a heroin addict and still maintained good
grades in school. However, the student suffered in other aspects of her
life and this program might help URI students to stay away from similar
problems in their private lives.
This program will be in addition to many other services already on campus.
Already available to students are programs through the Office of Student
Life and information from Health Services.
So, although a new program might be around to help next semester, take it
easy this summer and don't get into any trouble. And if any students feel
that they are already having substances abuse problems, please seek out a
program that will help.