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Resources For Parents, Guardians, and Families

Drinking issues are a growing concern on college campuses nationwide, particularly for first-year college students. New students often feel an amazing amount of independence during their first year in college. You may find your student testing boundaries and exploring new beliefs and behaviors. However, sometimes they are unaware of the consequences of their decisions. Talk openly with your student about attending parties, alcohol and drug use, sexual decisions, safety and peer pressure. Although these conversations can be tough, they are extremely important. Families have more influence than they realize when it comes to students making positive decisions about such life situations.

Below is a list of tools you may find helpful in starting the discussion about alcohol and other drugs with your student. If you have further questions or concerns, feel free to reach out to Program Coordinator Kurt Dunkel at or 717-477-1536.

Parent, Guardian and Family Tools

Mothers Against Drunk Driving

The mission of Mothers Against Drunk Driving is to stop drunk driving, support the victims of this violent crime, and prevent underage drinking.

The use and abuse of alcohol and drugs are serious issues that should not be ignored or minimized. If left untreated, use and abuse can develop into substance use disorder. As a result, it is important to recognize the signs and symptoms of alcohol and drug abuse early. If you're worried that your student might be abusing alcohol or drugs, here are some of the warning signs to look for:

Physical and Health Warning Signs of Drug Abuse

  • Deterioration in personal grooming or physical appearance.
  • Eyes that are bloodshot or pupils that are smaller or larger than normal.
  • Frequent nosebleeds could be related to snorted drugs (meth or cocaine).
  • Changes in appetite or sleep patterns. Sudden weight loss or weight gain.
  • Impaired coordination, injuries/accidents/bruises that they won't or can't tell you about- they don't know how they got hurt.

Behavioral Signs of Alcohol or Drug Abuse

  • Clashes with family values and beliefs.
  • Using eye drops to mask bloodshot eyes and dilated pupils
  • Demanding more privacy, locking doors and avoiding eye contact.
  • Using incense, perfume, air freshener to hide smell of smoke or drugs.
  • Sudden change in relationships, friends, favorite hangouts, and hobbies.
Contact the Connection AOD Program 210 Old Main (2nd Floor), 1871 Old Main Drive, Shippensburg, PA 17257 Phone: 717-477-1164 Fax: 717.477.4007