December 8, 2008

Regional Network List Member,

I hope you had a successful semester, and I am sure you are looking forward to a well deserved break with family and friends during the upcoming holiday season.  This issue of the Regional Network Newsletter contains several informational pieces that could be helpful in your campus prevention work.  As always, the Virginia and Maryland State Coordinators (Susie Bruce and Megan Hearron) and myself remain willing to provide information and technical assistance.  Please contact me ( if you want to learn more about The Network and how it can support you and your campus prevention program.  Again, best wishes for a happy holiday season!


Spencer Deakin, Ph.D.

Regional Director for MD, VA & DC



The Central Maryland College Roundtable and the Baltimore County Department of Health-Bureau of Substance Abuse will co-sponsor a regional college symposium at Goucher College on Tuesday, January 13, 2009 from 8:30 AM to 3:00 PM.  The program includes presentations from three knowledgeable speakers.  These include, Dr. Jonathan Gibralter, President of Frostburg State University.  Dr. Gibralter has received national recognition for his leadership in addressing high risk drinking at Frostburg.  He has not signed the Amethyst Initiative which has been supported by the University System of  Maryland Chancellor and several presidents in the state of Maryland.  Second, Mr. John Zacker, Director of Judicial Affairs at the University of Maryland at College Park, will speak about the effective use of judicial affairs in addressing alcohol misuse.  Finally, Mr. James Fell, a researcher with the Pacific Institute for Research and Evaluation, will be presenting on the implications and complexities of the current drinking age.  Lunch will be provided and there will be time for small group break-out sessions during the day.  There is no cost for the program but you need to RSVP by January 5, 2009 to Elaine Lawton at to help the committee accurately plan for the food.  The Maryland Alcohol and Drug Abuse Administration has provided financial support for the program.  



The Amethyst Initiative has sparked debate over the minimum legal drinking age on many campuses this fall.  The Network has developed a new publication about the minimum drinking age.  Presidents and Chancellors at Network member institutions will receive the publication during the first week of December.  The publication supports discussion about the issue and the importance of focusing on relevant research data to inform the discussion.  Your president may pass the publication onto you or you can read it on The Network's website  Also, the Higher Education Center's website has valuable information about the minimum drinking age. You can access six different publications by browsing the HEC publications section  and clicking on the MLDA/AGE21 link.



The RFP for the 2009 High Risk Drinking and Violence Prevention Grant competition will be announced in mid-December.  The applications will be due by January 21, 2009.  The Department of Education will award up to 16 grants to a maximum of $160,000 per grant.  You can check the Department of Education's website or the Higher Education Center's website for the details in a couple of weeks. 



Do you know an undergraduate or graduate student conducting research in AOD prevention?  The Network is currently soliciting applications for the 2009 Margaret J. Barr Student Research Award competition.  The submission deadline is January 31, 2009.  The awardee receives a stipend and expenses to present at next year's National Meeting.  Award recipients must be affiliated with a Network member institution.  The "student research award" announcement link is located on The Network's website,   You can also call Joan Masters at the University of Missouri at 573-884-7551 for more information.



The 2008 National Meeting in St. Paul, Minnesota had several programs that focused on college mental health, campus safety, sexual and physical violence prevention, and threat assessment.  Obviously,  the Virginia Tech and Northern Illinois University tragedies have sparked initiatives to improve student safety.  I am willing to forward my power point presentation "College Mental Health and Campus Safety" from the conference to you.  You can send an email request to me at  Also, the Higher Education Center has recently published several documents concerning this issue.  You can access the materials at   Just click on the word violence to read the information.



Feel free to forward this electronic newsletter to your colleagues who have an interest in higher education prevention.  The newsletter will be distributed four times during the academic year.  Also, I respect your time and email space.  To unsubscribe send an email with the subject line "unsubscribe" to