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Thursday, January 03, 2013

UPC Perils of the College Drinking Culture Forums Kick Off in January

College-bound Fairfax County Public Schools (FCPS) students and their parents are encouraged to attend an upcoming program that deals with binge drinking on college campuses. The Unified Prevention Coalition of Fairfax County (UPC), in collaboration with the Fairfax County Police Department, will present “The Perils of the College Drinking Culture,” a series of forums, during the remainder of the school year. The first program, hosted by the McLean High School PTSA and Safe Community Coalition, will be held Thursday, January 17, at 7 p.m. at McLean High School.
The two-hour event will feature a screening and panel discussion on the award-winning documentary, Haze, designed for parents and their college-bound teens, and for any citizens concerned about underage drinking. Parents are encouraged to attend with their high school-aged students.
Featured speakers and panelists who will take part in the 2013 forums will include Raymond Morrogh, Commonwealth’s Attorney for Fairfax County and his deputy Casey Lingan; William Hauda, M.D., Inova Fairfax Hospital; Bruce Ferguson, Commander, Fairfax County Police Department Youth Services Division; Mary Ann Sprouse, director, George Mason University’s Office of Alcohol, Drug and Health Education; Jeff Levy, father of a student who died following drinking at a college party; Ryan Smith, a Virginia Tech graduate student; and other local students. A question-and-answer session will follow.
The program, launched in 2010, is part of an ongoing effort by county leaders to address the significant health and legal risks associated with the underage and binge drinking. Three additional forums will be held in the spring and summer, including May 16 at Westfield High School, and May 22 and July 31 at the Ernst Community Cultural Center located on the Annandale campus of Northern Virginia Community College (NVCC), co-sponsored by NVCC.
The UPC is dedicated to promoting prevention of violence and drug use by youth and young adults in the community. This program is partially funded by federal Drug Free Communities and STOP (sober truth on preventing underage drinking) grants.
Note: The January 17 program will be held in the school auditorium, 1633 Davidson Road in McLean. In the event of inclement weather, the forum will be rescheduled for January 30. For more information, contact Lucy Caldwell, Fairfax County Police Department, at 703-246-3271, or visit