Oglethorpe Uses Governor’s Office of Highway Safety Grant to Help Protect and Promote Students’ Well-Being

Since 2008, Oglethorpe University has been awarded an annual grant from the The Governor’s Office of Highway Safety. The grant promotes and raises awareness for highway safety issues, and thanks to Leanne Henry-Miller, director of counseling services, Oglethorpe has continued to benefit from this grant in some amazing ways.

Four Oglethorpe students participate in a banner competition about bullying at the Bacchus conference. Their participation was made possible by the grant from The Governor's Office for Highway Safety.

In 2008, the grant was fundamental in establishing the OU Alcohol and Drug Task Force. Members Gaby Pierce ’16, Zena Stephens ’13, Lukas Strasser ’14 and Katie Galli ’15 have been integral in tightening the alcohol and drug policy on campus and making sure students are more informed about sanctions. For example, this task force helped to establish the Good Samaritan Policy, which protects a student from being punished if he seeks help in an alcohol or drug-related emergency.  In general, the Task Force stresses a need for uniform, clearly defined policies in regards to alcohol and drug sanctions.

Similarly, the grant is a primary sponsor of Peer Education training, which is a program targeted toward leaders on campus. This spring, nine students completed the training, and learned how to respond to dangerous campus situations and how to lead through positive examples.

“Anyone who’s interested in being a leader on campus should (consider) this training,” said Leanne. “RAs, RHs, group leaders… it’s important for all gate keepers.”

Additionally, the grant provided funds to take students to the Bacchus Network Area 9 Conference. These students (Everett Jackson ’15, Gaby Pierce ’16, Brian Cornelius ’15 and Precious Goto ’16) participated in a banner competition about bullying, as well as a contest to see who could make the best Iron Chef “mocktail” (a cocktail without alcohol).

The grant also covers the cost for Alcohol e-CheckUpToGo, an online test for students who are concerned about their alcohol intake or who have been sanctioned.

Finally, the grant covers portions of speakers’ visits, such as Elaine Pasqua’s Orientation Presentation: “Sex and Excess: Surviving the Party,” which discussed how alcohol is usually a factor in sexual assault.

“The speakers are targeted towards freshmen because we know those first six weeks have high-risk behavior,” explained Leanne. “(We also) bring in speakers who target Greek life and athletes.”

Thanks to this grant, our campus has become better educated about drug risks and sanctions. Our student leaders have learned how to help their peers during moments of distress, and online tests have become available for those who are concerned about their alcohol consumption. Thanks in part to the Highway Safety Grant, Oglethorpe is becoming a safer, more informed campus, with students who are better prepared for emergencies and ready to lead their peers by example.

The Counseling Services at Oglethorpe is always ready to listen. If you have any alcohol or drug-related concerns, contact Leanne Henry-Miller at 404-364-3415.

The Coca-Cola Foundation Awards $1 Million to OU for Scholarships

The Coca-Cola Foundation LogoThe Coca-Cola Foundation — the global philanthropic arm of The Coca-Cola Company – has awarded a $1 million grant to Oglethorpe University to establish the Coca-Cola Oglethorpe Scholars program.  The foundation recently announced grants to seventeen colleges and universities totaling $5 million as part of The Coca-Cola First Generation College Scholarship Program. Oglethorpe will award its first Coca-Cola scholarships during its annual competitive scholarship competition in January 2013.

“Oglethorpe has a longstanding tradition of providing a high-quality, hands-on liberal arts education to first-generation college students. In fact, nearly 35 percent of our students are first-generation, a rarity among the nation’s top liberal arts colleges,” said Dr. Lawrence Schall, president of Oglethorpe University.
“We are extremely grateful for Coca-Cola’s recognition of our service to these students and to the city of Atlanta through this very generous grant. Our new Coca-Cola Oglethorpe Scholars program will help 100 first-generation students learn to make a life, make a living, and make a difference.”
For nearly 100 years, the Coca-Cola Company and Oglethorpe University have shared strong ties to one another and to the city of Atlanta. The very first Coca-Cola bottler, John Thomas Lupton, was a great Oglethorpe benefactor for whom one of our signature buildings is named. Throughout the years, numerous Coca-Cola executives have served on Oglethorpe’s board of trustees, including current Oglethorpe board chairman Norm Findley, retired Executive Vice President for Coca-Cola Enterprises, and board member Ceree Eberly, Chief People Officer for the Coca-Cola Company. Coca-Cola CEO Muhtar Kent was awarded an honorary Doctor of Laws degree from Oglethorpe in 2008.

Read the press release from the Coca-Cola Foundation

Download the OU press release (pdf)