About Louisiana State University
Louisiana State University (LSU), founded in 1860 in Baton Rouge, enrolls over 26,000 students, with 3,500 students involved in Greek life through fraternities and sororities. LSU’s urban setting supports a large athletic program with many standout programs such as baseball, basketball, gymnastics, and a well-publicized football team.
LSU is known among students as a “party school” due to its close proximity to New Orleans. In fact, students are given a sanctioned day off to experience Mardi Gras celebrations. In May 2003, with a large population on campus and the public eye watching events at LSU, the need was clear for alcohol education to teach college students about the dangers and risks associated with drinking.
LSU began using MyStudentBody in July 2004 as a way to make alcohol education more interactive and teach students about the dangers of alcohol in a new way. LSU’s Wellness Education Coordinator, Hope McPhatter, MA, CHES, explained that prior to using MyStudentBody, LSU health educators organized events such as wellness classes, Alcohol Awareness Week, and activities for the Greek population.LSU began using MyStudentBody with the support of the vice chancellor, registrar’s office, and dean of students, because the program would enable LSU to reach a larger population than it could through existing wellness activities.
Today, MyStudentBody continues to be a requirement for all incoming students, including first year and transfer students. The judicial system also uses the program as a sanctioning tool for students. If a student commits a drug infraction, he or she is required to take the MyStudentBody-Drugs course.
LSU resident advisors and student ambassadors speak about MyStudentBody in a positive way, which motivates students to educate themselves through the program. McPhatter feels strongly that there is an increased level of wellness education knowledge on campus due to MyStudentBody. The increase in education has helped students learn to recognize signs of alcohol poisoning and other serious alcohol-related emergencies on campus.
“Students are more aware of the dangers of alcohol; they have more knowledge about alcohol because of the education through MyStudentBody,” says McPhatter, commenting on the changes that have occurred in the students after the implementation of MyStudentBody.
While MyStudentBody is not the only health education program available, LSU believes the program to be the most interactive and interesting to students. Administrators have enjoyed the customer support that MyStudentBody provides. LSU continues to educate students on alcohol and other wellness topics through MyStudentBody.
MyStudentBody has exceeded LSU’s expectations due to the “support from the MyStudentBody team. Anytime we make a suggestion,” says McPhatter, “the MyStudentBody team listens, and more often than not, the MyStudentBody team uses these suggestions to enhance the program.”
Hope McPhatter, like many wellness educators, is working to teach college students about healthier lifestyles. “MyStudentBody is my choice for a primary prevention program that reaches my entire campus and educates LSU students about their daily choices.”