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Brandeis University's Community Newspaper — Waltham, Mass.

Drug, alcohol committee to hold town hall

Published: November 19, 2010
Section: News

The university Committee on Drug and Alcohol and Policy will offer new opportunities for students to give feedback on alcohol use on campus, Professor Len Saxe (HELLER), Chair of the committee wrote to students in an e-mail Thursday evening.

“In line with our charge from President Reinharz, we are committed to providing an honest assessment of the alcohol and drug issues on campus and recommendations about how the University—in line with our mission and values— can best ensure the health and safety of all community members,” Saxe wrote.

University President Jehuda Reinharz announced the new committee, which consists of students, faculty, staff and administrators, following several alcohol-related incidents the weekend of Pachanga, held Oct. 23. That night, nine students were transported to local hospitals for alcohol poisoning.

Saxe acknowledged that the committee has not already “reached any substantive conclusions,” but added that during the next week Heller graduate students will be running focus groups with undergraduate students who can share input confidentially with the committee.

Saxe wrote that the committee will work with the Student Union Executive Board and Student Affairs to organize the focus groups. There is also a website for the committee, where community members can send comments anonymously. The committee plans to work with the Student Union to schedule a town hall meeting about alcohol use and university policies, according to Saxe.

“I think it’s just a general call to want to be proactive in our social climate on campus,” Associate Dean of Student Life Jamele Adams said. “We can’t do anything without the community and input from the community.”