College of Southern Nevada is a higher academic institution that empowers the
students by teaching them new skills and knowledge after graduating from high
schools. For quite a long time, it has
been a centre of excellence as far as academics and co-curriculum activities are
concerned. Moreover, it has also been of great importance for members of the local
community by providing job opportunities to some of them and in creation of a
favourable atmosphere for doing business. The college has also been offering
programs that gear toward developing the students socially and cognitively and
equip them with high-notched knowledge and skills that will enable them to
survive in post-education life as well as become productive members of society.
Despite all these good attributes, the college has lagged behind in terms of
dealing with drug menace within the educational environment. The institution
has for an extended period of time been associated with drug and substance
abuse which has significantly impacted the overall performance of students. These
behaviours warrant the need for a community based approach in order to reduce this
vice. CSN has experienced drug and substance problems for quite a long time
which have impacted student’s academic performances, increased crime and
sexually transmitted diseases as well unwanted pregnancy cases. The community
needs to play an active role to help address this epidemic.
Students should make best out of
their college experiences. However, engagement in vices such as substance abuse
tends to lower chance of success significantly and at times they may lead to
expulsion. Alcoholism has been one of the college’s oldest and biggest nuisance.
According to the National Institute of Drug Abuse, about 43% of college students
take alcohol within a month. Currently, the college’s student population is
10,000 and according to the NIDA’s survey, approximately 4300 students consume
alcohol in a given month. Furthermore, students from this institution also
constitute a significant proportion of the individual’s arrested by police due
to alcohol related cases such as driving while intoxicated. Additionally, it is
also believed that the number of students smoking marijuana has actually tripled
in the past two decades. In 1994, 1.8% of college student’s population smoked
marijuana, this percentage later increased to 4.5% in 2004 and in 2014 it hit
5.9%. Students who are suspected to have consumed cocaine in the past year were
440 and this constitute about 4.4% of the entire student population. Another
drug that a lot of students abuse is Adderall which students fondly refer to as
the smart drug or study drug. It is a stimulant that has gained popularity among
students in the recent past. Its popularity is attributed to the fact that it
helps students stay awake for a long period of time. At CSN, this drug is mostly
used by the students who excel in their academics. Molly is also another popular
drug consumed by the students in colleges and our college is not an exception.
Molly gained its popularity in the 1990s and was popularly known as ecstasy.
These drugs are highly popular at raves and concerts that mostly attract
Increased consumption of drugs in
the college is attributed to the fact that they are readily available and can
be easily accessed. Taking alcohol for instance, it is freely distributed and
consumed around the campus premises. Furthermore, the drug is used at house
parties, student gatherings and at sporting events. Many students in college
are away from their home for the first time and with newly acquired “freedom” so
they tend to explore and experiment with everything including drugs. Peer pressure
has also influenced drug and substance indulgence.
Substance abuse has not only become
a menace to the school but also to our community in general. In relation to
academic performance; the college has witnessed a decline in the students’
performance. It about time the community based approach is adopted to curb drug
and substance abuse at CSN and bring stability back. In this approach, members
of our community will all work together to reduce and curb substance abuse. The
members of our community will help to keep drugs off the streets by giving out
information to law enforcers. This will help in flashing out manufacturers and
sellers, thereby contributing to reduction of drugs in circulation.
Furthermore, they will also help in rehabilitating the already addicted
students and this will include financing drug rehabilitation centers and also
helping in establishing counselling centers that will enlighten students about
dangers of drugs.
conclusion, the community has a great role it should and want to play by coming
together to assist in curbing this uprising menace. It is about time our
community members realize that every dog has its day; today it might be my
child who is chained down by drugs, tomorrow it might be your daughter, brother
or maybe even grandchild.