JUNIOR/COMMUNITY COLLEGES: DRUG EDUCATION AND TESTING PROGRAMS
(Monday, June 6, 11:15 a.m. -12:30 p.m.)
The first person on our panel today is Eve Atkinson. Eve is the associate athletic director at Temple University. She is presently coordinating its drug program. Temple University has 19 sports which this program covers. Eve is a former NCAA Council member and is presently owner of a consulting firm on athletics. She recently was an expert witness testifying before the United States House of Representatives Select Committee on narcotics and abuse in substance control. She currently is pursuing a doctorate degree j sports administration at Temple University and was the author of an article in Athletic Administration which you may have seen, entitled, A Drug Awareness Program is Preventative Medicine. With Eve, will be Mike Greer president of Collegiate Consultants on Drugs and Alcohol
Thanks very much Russ. It's a pleasure to be with all of you this morning. You can't get any better weather than this, so we'll have to make sure we all get out and enjoy ourselves this afternoon and take carl of business this morning.
First, as Russ alluded to, there is an article in your convention magazine that really explains the Temple Deter Program, also too, included was a handout that explains Mike Green's perspective and includes ti outline we will be following this morning.
What does Deter stand for? It stands for deterrent. It is the first part of the word deterrent and it's a three-pronged program; education, testing and rehabilitation. Of all of the things we'll discuss thj morning, the educational component is the most important. It's the area we spend the most money on and the most emphasis on. Mike Green will be handling that aspect of the program.
Our president at Temple University was concerned about presidents being terminated because of scandal! on their campuses, and about the health and safety of student-athletes. He was concerned about the integrity of the athletic program and he formed a blue ribbon panel that was composed of doctors, lawyers, administrators, student-athletes, and faculty members. There are about 25 people on the actual blue ribbon panel. There was a lot of input from diversified areas that formed the Deter Program.
We decided to go with only performance enhancing drugs. Some of that was due to the advice on our le~ counsel. They felt that the educational and rehabilitation program was very important and that the testing would be a very small part of the program, but the deterrent would be the bite of the program.
Some of the things you should look for in getting an educational consultant is to interview them and f them speak. I advise all of you to hit the forum that Mike will be doing tomorrow at 9:30. He will show yc and demonstrate some of his educational techniques. I think you'll find it very entertaining and very interesting, so make sure you see it.
We do only performance enhancing drugs and anabolic steroids, cocaine and amphetomines. We also have clause that states any illegal drug by the state or federal government is strictly prohibited. That's very important to include a clause like that with your program no matter what you're testing for. It's very important to stress to your student-athletes that the result of the tests will be confidential. We do a computerized random sampling pool. Each student-athlete receives a number which is then put into a computer A certain percent of the student population is tested throughout the academic year.
The athletic department does not do the testing. The program is run strictly under the vice president for health sciences. It was felt very important that the trainers who are very close to the student-athletE would not be put in jeopardy.
The athletic department is notified 48-hours before the testing will actually be done. So we get a lj in the director's office and we must contact the student-athletes to tell them to report to health services produce a urine sample. Each student-athlete at the beginning of the year must sign a consent form to be eligible for athletics at Temple University.
We give the student-athlete a little index card which tells them the date of the testing, the time of the testing, who to see and to bring with them two forms of identification. Please remind them to bring a full bladder. A lot of times they forget. It's important to provide beverages so they can produce a sample should Mother Nature fight them. The laboratory we use is an outside laboratory. Temple University has the facilities, but we felt in order to keep the tests confidential, we would like to go off-campus. We send th samples to a local lab and that lab sends them to a lab outside of Chicago.
It's very important in your testing program that you have some type of appeal process. There are some situations that come up that you would never dream of. If you don't have an appeal process or some type of a waiver process, you really could be backed up into a corner. A female student-athlete on one of our team sports was brought in and was confirmed positive for anabolic steroids. She was a very tall, lean woman. I brought her in and told her she was confirmed positive. She looked at me and burst out crying, and said, "that's impossible. I would never go near that stuff. I know it's horrible. Look at me, I wouldn't bulk
up." I asked her if she was on any medication. She stated that she was on birth control pills. I asked her why she didn't write it down when asked about any medication. We learned a very important thing through this process. She said, "Well, there was this football player about five yards away from me and he was talking to another physician and I didn't want him to hear me." So, she didn't tell the physician she was on birth control pills. We had an analysis done by a laboratory and it turned out that it showed positive for anabolic steroids. The point of the whole story is that if we did not have an appeal process where she could make her case, show the proscription from her doctor, be heard by the panel, she would have gone into the first set of sanctions. That would not have been fair.
Remember the program is not to be punitive in nature. It's to help the student-athlete get back on track. These are minimum sanctions. A head coach may impose more serious sanctions if he or she feels they have to. The first sanction is notification of the student-athlete and remind them that they have an
appellate process to exercise their rights. If they decide not to appeal, we go into notification of some other key people on campus; the vice president of health services who heads up the program, the parents of the student-athlete if they are under the age of 18. We then notify the head coach. The individual is then removed from the random sampling pool and retested on a set basis with a number of weeks designed by the physician in charge. We put the person on a personalized rehabilitation program which is designed for their substance abuse.
The second sanction is the same notification process and the same appellate process. All the costs of rehabilitation for all of the sanctions is absorbed by Temple University. That's a luxury we have being a successful Division I school. Every school may not be able to afford that. The student-athlete is suspended from the team for the rest of the academic year. Theyare removed from the random sampling pool again. They're retested by design of the physician in charge and his or her individual rehabilitation is continued
The third sanction and the most serious is the same type of notification and appellate process. After the appellate process, they are immediately dismissed from the athletic program. They are still a student at the university, but they are no longer affiliated with the athletic program. We will continue to rehab them.
The rehabilitation is under the director of health services who is the vice president who makes an appointment with the physician in charge. They discuss the substance abuse. That person must contact Mike Green within five days so that he may evaluate the situation. If it is one of a very serious nature, Mike would then come to me and we'd see if we need to do some off-campus type of rehab in a facility or hospital. Any failure to attend a scheduled session is the same thing as not following the Deter policies and would be proper to impose further sanctions on that individual.
Another important factor is the employee policy. Anyone who recommends any illegal drugs to a student-athlete would be immediately suspended. They have an appellate process also, but if they were found guilty of the charge, they would be immediately dismissed from the university. That's very important for the student-athletes to know that that policy is out there for your employees.
In general, the most important part is the educational component which Mike Green will speak to. The testing part is really kind of the final exam of the course. The important thing is to protect the safety and the health of your student-athletes and that you keep the integrity of your programs to have honest competition out there.
Thanks Eve, that was very good. When I first walked into Temple, I didn't go by the book. I made my own program up the following way. I was a college football player, I was in a fraternity and worked in a bar to support myself going through college. I coached college football. I was a defensive line coach for eight years, so I served in the athletic department. I am also a recovering alcoholic, so I stand up here in front of you II years sober. Before a lot of this got started, I was already in sobriety trying to get sober through Alcoholics Anonymous. I have a master's degree in health. I really believe that sometimes we don't go out with the right type of education to reach the students. I decided to make my own programs up to get the students attention.
We have two sessions every year on campus. The first session is called "Kegs, Kicks and Colleges" and the other is called "Books, Bonds and Booze." We then meet with individual teams without the coach and after practice.
We also do a freshmen orientation. Before they get involved with the athletic teams, fraternities and parties, I meet with them in September. You go over decision-making, the power of alcohol, the processes they will be involved with and what you do with recreation. You give them a chance before anyone else such as fraternities and show them what is going to go on on campus.
We give our students a responsible drinking formula. If 90 percent of the students drink, that means that 10 percent don't. Most of them are not 21 and they're breaking the law. Is there a right way to drink? if you're going to go out and drink, you shouldn't drink more than two drinks. I'm not condoning drinking, but if that's your choice, you should never have more than two. Keep yourself responsible.
The formula is TWO HALT TIPS. H stands for hungary. Food slows the consumption of alcohol down. A stands for anger. Alcohol and anger are probably the worst two combinations you can ever put together. L stands for loneliness. You don't need to get drunk to go out and meet somebody. Loneliness then goes to being tired. If you are tired, you take a nap and you don't have to go out and drink. Most times alcohol is a depressant. That says, HALT. It doesn't say to stop. If you're going to make some choices, eat well. Be careful at how angry you are.
Tips was just added. We recently had a Rutgers student die at a fraternity party. T stands for things that can get you drunk, such as, initiation, 21st birthday, bachelor parties, etc; the types of drinks. I stands for ingredients. Know what you're drinking. If someone hands you a drink, make sure you know what's in the drink and how many shots. P stands for people and places. Know the people you go out with. Know the places you are going to. The peer pressure. S stands for the most important thing of all, substances. You never mix alcohol and substances. Not aspirin, not steroids, cocaine, and not marijuana. The more you take, the more chance you have of an overdose or alcoholism or drug addiction.
We give a t-shirt to the athletes to wear around with TWO HALT TIPS on the back. They walk around and people ask them what does that mean? Now the athlete is educating someone else by explaining the formula to them. We also try to educate our athletes to go to high schools as peer educators. We had 40 athletes volunteer to be peer educators at high schools because they have an interest in changing the attitudes on alcohol and drugs. I think that will be the most successful part of the program. They go out and do the speaking and what a better way?
The next speaker is Bob Bottger who is the athletic director at Indian River Community College here in Florida. He was a former swimming coach and also a women's swimming coach. Bob.
You do not have to have the perfect program. You will not implement the perfect program, so make sure that you evaluate what you are doing at least once a year. To implement a program, you may not have what you want. You're going to have to do some compromising, but that doesn't mean you shouldn't get started.
Testing is part of our physical for every athlete in September before they can tryout for a team. Subsequently, random testing unannounced. If you don't have that, don't waste your money with your program. You have to have this continuous throughout the year. We use the off-campus lab. I think it's critical. We do not use any athletic personnel in the process. I also feel that is critical and a super way to go.
For the first time positive in our testing program, no coach gets that knowledge, nor do I. And again, it's an emphasis on the educational/rehabilitation component. We feel there is pressure put on that individual by the coach and it can get complicated.
It has got to be an observed specimen. They're taking specimens in with them or adding something to them. And again, non-athletic personnel involved in that.
When I've gone out into the community for support of marketing, promotions, etc., is was the easiest sell I've had in my nine years at Indian River, getting people to give money to support drug testing.
We have a substance abuse counselor on our campus. Everyone on our teams go through a mandatory three one-hour sessions without the coach present. Our coaches and staff people and myself consider ourselves as another team because we go through the exact same sessions without any students there and with the same counselors. I think your coaches and staff need it. There's a lot of education to come out of these sessions.
We wanted to go a little beyond our campus and this was a little effort. So, we took an individual and a couple of coaches to make cards such as the ones you used to buy in gum to trade with your friends or whatever. On the front of the card, it says, "No." and the name of the school. On the back of the card it
says, Eric Wood, Have some Pride, say No to drugs. It also states that Eric is a member of the National Championship Men's Swimming Team, All-American National Champion and the card includes the sponsors. We went to the superintendent of the schools and got his permission.
The first card that went out corresponded with the first week of our home men's basketball season and every youngster in 15,000 elementary schools were given these cards through their school. We were able to take some of our athletes to the elementary schools to go along with the distribution of this card. The positive publicity that our institution received was incredible with both the television and newspapers. It's the role model thing again, but taken beyond our campus and into our community.
We are trying to start counseling on campus for people having difficulties. We are trying to push the Fellowship of Christian Athletes. It's a positive thing on our campus that some people want. Try to think of alternative, positive things that you can get youngsters involved with.
I don't go out and actively recruit student-athletes for our program in my position because I do no coaching. However, I get involved when the student-athletes and/or their parents arrive on our campus. The coaches will bring them to my office. I can guarantee you that when we get on the subject of drug testing, we win the parents immediately because every parent looks at their son or daughter as having no problem. They don't worry about that testing problem for their youngster, but they want to know that we're weeding out the bad kids. Mommyand daddy are sold lock, stock and barrel that this is the community college they should be sending their son or daughter to. The kid is the one you want to watch. When he or she starts squirming in his seat, you also have made another point. You're telling anyone not to come to our institution because if you have a problem, the likelihood that you will complete two years of competition with us is just about nil. I'm trying to save us some grief up front. That mayor may not be fair, but that's my thoughts on that.
Keep things simple and keep positive situations going.
Our next speaker is Bob Dinaberg. He comes to us from California as the athletic director at Santa
Barbara Community College. He was previously a football coach there and past president of the California Community College Athletic Directors Association and the California Football Coaches Association, Bob.
Thank you. I appreciate the opportunity to address you and to see some old and new friends. I don't come here to address you as certainly an expert on substance abuse. My outlook on the problem comes from one of a former football coach and an athletic director who has actually been frustrated throughout the years on various things, which I'm sure you have felt. My own daughter played on our women's tennis team and four years after the fact, she told me how the number one tennis player would have a couple of beers before every practice and before every match. One of our best football players told me how he was an alcoholic and was an alcoholic when he played football. All of you can relate to some experience.
As a coach, I felt removed from all of this. As you know, the athletes don't talk to you about it. We recently did a survey through our program and a very small percentage of athletes will go to a coach for a problem. They'll go to their peers or to their parents, but they won't go to a coach. That was part of our frustration.
NACDA had a series of workshops with Ron Heitzinger that some of you might have attended. I attended
the workshop in California, I left knowing that I could do what Ron suggested at our school. What appealed to me was that you were not just working with the athlete who had the problem, but you were also working for the young man or woman who like the fellow traveler, ended up being the enabler and actually took the problem kid and made them become a bigger problem. This really appealed to me.
Next year, we were able to bring Ron Heitzinger to our California convention. The Ford Motor Company paid for Ron's speaking engagement as well as his two workshops, one at northern California and the other at southern California. We had the entire state of California exposed to one type of program. We took four of our people to Ron's workshops and got them into the program.
We had no money. We are not funded for this program at all, but we decided as an athletic department, that this is what we wanted to do. We formed our committee and got approval. We then went out to raise funds and in two days, we raised $4,000. It was one of the easiest fund raisers we ever had. We got the money to bring Heitzinger & Associates for some training. We invited our local high school representatives to come in for some free training. We also had two colleges in close proximity and for a small fee, we invited them to come in for the training also. Everyone in our community had the same initial training session. With that, we started our program within three weeks.
Basically, our program consists of four elements. We have an education sub-committee which consists of an hour and a half education session to every athlete in small homogenous groups. It's really important that
it be in small homogenous groups. The coaches are not present. Kathy O'Conner who is an health teacher at the college volunteers her time. She is our key person on this committee. We talk about the special problel that athletes have. We always have at least one or two self-referrals after everyone of these sessions.
The second part of our program deals with the referral part of it. Our mental health counselor startec that portion. We have a referral program in the town and we also have someone from the Santa Barbara Counci: of Drug and Alcoholism on our committee .
Substance abuse is the main part of our program, but it is not the total problem. We want it to be a help program for many things. Some of our people have to deal with the death of their parents, some come in for just general information and it does not have to be substance abuse. It can be for anything. At least 1 have formed a bridge between people in trouble and the athletic staff where they will come to talk.
People are trying to start an all-college program and are falling on their face. The athletic department has got to get involved in a program on their own. The all-college programs are too bogged down and cannot handle all of the problems.
Our program is just a start for us and we're really excited about it. If anyone is interested in our program further, there are handbooks available to you.
FROM THE FLOOR:
How many have come out positive in your testing?
FROM THE PANEL:
We cannot answer you because if it's a first-time positive, we have not been told.
Those results are kept confidential. Remember, it's not to be a policing-type program, but it is to help the student. You have to remember that the student-athletes are smart and they know how long it takes 1 a drug to flush out of their system. It's very important that it be a surprise testing in order to give it bite. That's why our athletic department is only given 48-hours notice so that drugs cannot be flushed out ( their system in enough time.
FROM THE FLOOR:
How much education do you present to your athletes during a school year? Should we hire a consultant bring someone from outside in?
FROM THE PANEL:
An outside resource is the best person because they are not connected with the athletic department. 1 students will be much more honest when the coaches are not there. The sections on a first-year basis shoul( be no less than three times. Three important topics should be discussed; one is alcohol, one should be marijuana and the other should be the speed classification such as cocaine, crack, etc. Those are probably the three classic cases I see right now.
I'd like to thank our panel for being with us this afternoon .