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Penn College Event to Promote Safe Spring-Break Decisions

Encouraging students to make good decisions and enjoy Spring Break safely is the focus of an event to be offered Tuesday, March 4, at Pennsylvania College of Technology.

While educating students about the dangers of alcohol and drug abuse is the primary goal of the “Kick Off – Mix Off – Send Off” being co-sponsored by the College and Community Coalition and AAA North Penn, there will be plenty of opportunities for fun, too, when students sample nonalcoholic drinks concocted by their classmates in the College’s School of Hospitality.

A “Mix Off” to determine the three best-tasting drinks will be judged by a panel including Veronica M. Muzic, vice president for academic affairs/provost; Chef Paul Mach, assistant professor of food and hospitality management/culinary arts and co-host of the College’s “You’re the Chef” TV cooking series; Glenn T. Smith, chief executive officer of AAA North Penn; Michael R. Rafferty; mayor of Williamsport; Bob Koch, owner/manager of the Bullfrog Brewery and Restaurant in Williamsport; and Joe Garrison, Central Pennsylvania news bureau chief for WBRE-TV.

The tropically themed “Send Off” will run from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. in the Game Room on the first floor of the Bush Campus Center at Penn College. The event will feature food, games, dancing, prizes and, most importantly, information to help students enjoy their Spring Break safely and responsibly. In addition, the program will help students deal with practical issues such as passports, immunizations, insurance and general safety tips for traveling.

“The purpose of ‘Kick Off – Mix Off – Send Off’ is to help our students avoid the problems that sometimes can occur during Spring Break,” said Sharon Waters, director of career/academic support and counseling services at Penn College. “We are providing them with safety information, as well as warning them about the possible consequences of drug and alcohol use.”

“AAA North Penn’s goal is to encourage students that partying responsibly will reduce the rate of alcohol- and drug-related incidents on Spring Break,” said Barbara Caldwell, managing director of AAA North Penn. “Don’t be a statistic; making safe and informed decisions will guarantee a good time on vacation, not a tragic one.”

The College and Community Coalition includes faculty, staff and administrators from Penn College; law-enforcement and government officials; area landlords; and community leaders. It was formed in the fall of 1999 with the help of a grant from the Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board. It meets on a monthly basis to advance its mission, which is to prevent underage and excessive drinking by students.

For more information about the “Kick Off – Mix Off – Send Off,” call the Counseling and Career Services office at Penn College at (570) 327-4765, or send e-mail.

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