TALLAHASSE, FL — Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University (FAMU) has been awarded an $864,041 grant that will focus on substance-abuse education and the prevention of HIV and Hepatitis C.
FAMU Director of Counseling Services Yolanda Bogan, Ph.D., will direct the three-year grant from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA).
According to Bogan, one of the objectives of the grant is to create a campus culture that encourages students to learn and practice alternative ways of dealing with stress as a method of drug abuse prevention.
Bogan explained that drug abuse often opens the door for life-altering and life-threating diseases. She wants students to understand that developing such habits are counter-productive to their educational and professional goals.
“What we want is for our students to continue to receive messaging about the consequences of drug use, and how drug use can lead to poor decision making, subjecting students to be more vulnerable to contracting HIV and Hepatitis C,” Bogan said.
The grant will support a curriculum for undergraduate students enrolled in FAMU’s First-Year Experience Program, which allows the University to directly reach and impact students as they began their college experience. The First-Year Experience Program assists students with making a successful transition, academically and socially, from high school to college. In addition, the program reinforces critical thinking and behaviors that lead to academic success, and assists students with understanding how to make informed decisions.
“Congratulations to Dr. Bogan and her team for their stellar work in bringing this critically needed support to our campus to help ensure that we continue to lead the way in providing a safe and healthy living and learning environment for our scholars,” said President Elmira Mangum, Ph.D. “Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University is committed to the development of the whole student, academically, socially and health wise.”
The grant will also provide the University with resources to train students to become certified peer educators for prevention and informational programs. Students will also play an integral role in helping shape the program’s awareness campaigns to ensure they are linguistically relevant, age appropriate, and culturally consistent.