Mean Green Athletes Attend APPLE Conference
Amy Henard, Rachel Holden Look For Ways To Impact Peers
DENTON - The Mean Green’s Amy Henard (volleyball) and Rachel Holden (soccer) were two of more than 200 student-athletes, coaches and administrators to attend the recent Athletic Prevention Programming and Leadership Education Conference in Orlando, Florida.
Joined by staff members Michelle Jack and Chris Evans, Henard and Holden attended the APPLE Conference January 23-25 to learn more about substance abuse prevention and health among student-athletes.
The three-day national symposium included multiple speakers and breakout sessions with student-athletes from 29 schools across the country. Subjects included drug use and alcohol education to the not-so-obvious dangers of e-cigarettes.
“The speakers were some of the best I’ve ever heard,” Henard said. “We learned about motivational interviewing and ways to talk with our peers about substance abuse without cramming it down their throats.”
Since 1991, the APPLE Conference has been a joint venture by the Virginia Athletics Department and the Gordie Center for Substance Abuse Prevention. Attendees learn about the APPLE model and its seven areas in which college athletics departments can address substance abuse: policies, education, recruitment, expectations and attitudes, drug testing, sanctioning, and counseling and referral.
The goal of the conference is to give school representatives a chance to evaluate the drug and alcohol environment within their athletics departments and develop an action plan to enhance prevention efforts. For Henard and Holden, this starts with establishing a better system across the entire athletic department.
“The main goal for North Texas is addressing our current drug and alcohol policy,” Holden said. “Our current system isn’t uniform, and we need a policy that is up-to-date and the same across all Mean Green sports.”
The duo hopes to develop their plan by providing alcohol and drug awareness to incoming freshmen, and they aim to bring in speakers to address substance abuse prevention with Mean Green student-athletes. If all goes well, these ideas could be implemented in time for the fall semester.
To learn more about the APPLE Conference or the APPLE model on substance abuse, click here.