SGA brings alcohol awareness to light

Roberto Campos

Student Government Association (SGA) topped off National Collegiate Alcohol Awareness Week with a drunk driving simulator where students would wear drunk goggles and drive a golf cart through an obstacle course.

“This event shows what it’s like to drive while intoxicated,” said Zack Mathis, SGA administrative vice president ofsocial and cultural issues and sophomore engineering major. “You have coordination and judgment when you drive the golf cart on the course, but when you’re in a situation where you get in a car intoxicated you’re not going to have those. So this event is a way to show the dangers of driving drunk.”

The obstacle course was set up on the quad and drivers had to navigate their way around cones.

Several students participated in the drunk driving simulator including sophomore sports marketing major Micah Konkler.

“It was pretty realistic, I felt like I was drunk,” Konkler said. “I didn’t think it was going to be that hard, but it was difficult.”

Konkler said the drunk driving simulator was a good experience to be brought on campus because he’s heard people say drinking and driving was easy.

Konkler said he remember when his dad taught him how to drive.

“A car is more than a car… it’s a machine that can kill people so it needs to be taken seriously,” Konkler quoted his father.

Senior criminal justice major Nick Rice thought the event was good and bad.

“I think it’s a good event in terms of it shows people how hard it is to do something like that,” Rice said. “But it kind of seems like they were making a game out of something that is a pretty serious matter.”

Along with showing students the difficulties of drinking and driving, SGA also promoted USI’s Safe Alternative Emergency Transportation program or SAFE Ride. SAFE Ride, according to their broacher, is designed as an, “alternative to driving under the influence of riding with a driver who has been drinking or using drugs, to get home from a violent or potentially violent date or to get home if our car breaks down.”

“What you do is you call Evansville River City Yellow Cab, (812) 429-0000, and when the cab gets there you present your Eagle Access Card,” Mathis said. “The cab takes you home, and you pay for the cab at a later date. It’s a good way to prevent students from getting behind the wheel and into potentially dangerous situations.”

SAFE Ride is not a free service and allows a $20 limit per ride with a $50 credit limit. You are expected to pay the bill at the USI cashier’s office within 10 days according to its broacher.

Along with the drunk driving simulator, SGA also sponsered a margarita night at Salsa Rico to promote alcohol awareness Oct. 19.

“It’s something that we thought would grab people’s attention,” Mathis said. “We didn’t say it was a dry event so it was kind of risqué, we heard people talking about it on campus so I think it got people’s attention.”

Mathis came up with idea to host a margarita night as a way to teach people about the effects of alcohol.

“We used the event to teach people about the effects of alcohol on the body and how it can affect you,” Mathis said. “We usually have a speaker who talks at some point during the week about the negative effects that alcohol and their personal story with it, but that got cancelled this year. But overall we are satisfied with what we put together this year, and we can’t wait to do it again next year.”