186838 Crossroads: A Cooperative Approach to High School Drug Prevention

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Jeff J. Milroy, MPH , Public health Education, University of North Carolina at Greensboro, Greensboro, NC
David L. Wyrick, PhD , Department of Public Health Education, University of North Carolina at Greensboro, Greensboro, NC
Muhsin Orsini, EdD , Department of Public Health Education, University of North Carolina at Greensboro, Greensboro, NC
Melodie Fearnow-Kenney, PhD , Prevention Strategies, Mechanicsville, VA
Crossroads is a state-of-the-art drug prevention program that partners college and high school students to enhance high school drug prevention programming. By combining the proven approaches of peer education, technology-enhanced learning, social norms campaigns, and interactive strategies, health students receive and actively participate in a variety of experiences designed to impact key mediating variables and substance use outcomes. A randomized field study was conducted in high schools in North Carolina, South Carolina, and Nebraska. Schools were randomly assigned to a Crossroads classroom condition, Crossroads school-wide condition, full Crossroads, or a comparison condition, and pretest/posttest survey data was collected. A sample of teachers and students participated in classroom observations and group interviews. Mediators such as decision making, norms regarding peer acceptance and prevalence of drug use, and resistance skills have been key components of successful drug prevention programs and were strengthened in this study in the immediate and long-term. Furthermore, program effects were observed for several behavioral outcomes including monthly alcohol use, alcohol intentions, intentions to use drugs in general, and intentions to use cigarettes. Findings suggest that Crossroads is innovative in its use of college mentors, peer educators, and technology. It also shows promise for positively impacting drug-related attitudes and behaviors of high school students.

Learning Objectives:
1. Evaluate the peer education model employed in Crossroads. 2. Compare and contrast the various technologies used to facilitate Crossroads. 3. Discuss the theoretically-based mediators targeted by Crossroads. 4. Critique the findings that suggest Crossroads as an effective program for preventing drug use among high school students.

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have managed the Crossroads project for 1.5 years.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.