Pepperdine Puts on Drug & Alcohol Awareness Night for its Student-Athletes

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Oct. 28, 2010

MALIBU, Calif. - Nearly all of Pepperdine University's 275 student-athletes gathered on Wednesday night for a first annual Drug & Alcohol Awareness Night, a one-hour series of seminars sponsored by the CHAMPS/Life Skills class.

The student-athletes fanned out over the athletics village to hear six influential speakers:

-- Dr. Gary Green, Pepperdine's head team physician since 1995, who is a former chairman of the NCAA Committee on Drug Testing and Drug Education, as well as a consultant to Major League Baseball on anabolic steroids and performance-enhancing drugs.

-- Anne Stone, who joined Pepperdine's athletics staff this summer as its nutritionist and has been a consultant in Southern California for more than 20 years.

-- Dr. David Lewis, founder and director for the NBA, NHL and MLS drug treatment programs, who was a Presidential appointee and member of the White House Conference on a Drug-Free America.

-- Robert Scholz, a licensed marriage and family therapist who works at Pepperdine's counseling center and consults with community-based and governmental agencies.

-- Mike Sidley, a civil defense attorney in private practice in Los Angeles, who has been an expert legal commentator for CNN, MSNBC, E! and Court TV.

-- Officer Woodard of the Lost Hills Sheriff's Station, who represented the Sheriff's Teen Traffic Offender Program (STTOP) and brought a trailer that contained a car that had been destroyed in an alcohol-related accident.

Pepperdine's student-athletes rotated among three of the six presentations over the course of an hour. The night was sponsored by a grant from the West Coast Conference.

"The goal was that if the student-athletes could take something away from this, then mission accomplished," said Jim Hamad, Pepperdine's Assistant Director of Athletics for Student Development. "I got some great reviews from our athletes, who said it was fun and that the speakers were very good. Having small interactive groups with quick turnover and interesting topics really worked out great. Coupled with our SAAC barbecue, it was a great night."

Following the seminars, all the Waves headed to the Ralphs-Straus Tennis Center for the annual SAAC (Student-Athlete Advisory Committee) barbeque, which was catered by Wood Ranch. A water-balloon fight capped off the evening.

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