Sept. 12, 2013
SOUTH ORANGE, N.J. - A packed amphitheater in Seton Hall's McNulty Hall was buzzing on Tuesday night as the entire SHU student-athlete population was on hand to participate in noted speaker Elaine Pasqua's highly engaging "Surviving the Party" seminar.
An event brought to campus as part of the recently introduced H.A.L.L. (Helping Athletes Learn to be Leaders) Program, the presentation aimed to further equip the current Pirates with the tools and knowledge necessary to make responsible life choices.
Pasqua is one of the foremost educators addressing the possible consequences of the high-risk behaviors that are prevalent on college campuses across the nation. She has developed a reputation as one of the most impactful figures on the speaking circuit and brings experience providing player development training with prominent professional organizations such as the New York Giants, New York Jets, Baltimore Ravens and Philadelphia Phillies as well as working in conjunction with the NBA and NFL on league-wide initiatives.
Topics covered included alcohol and its effects the body, particularly for student-athletes. Pasqua also discussed what constitutes responsible drinking and how exceeding limits can lead to poor judgment that may result in potentially life-changing ramifications.
She also touched on sexual assault on college campuses, ways to prevent it, and further emphasized the message behind the mantra "no means no."
The final portion of the evening was used as an illustration to exemplify how easily sexually-transmitted diseases (STDs) can spread. Student-athletes participated in an orchestrated `fluid exchange' exercise where 180 cups were filled with water and 15 contained with a special salt solution. The student-athletes were then asked to exchange the fluids with each other by pouring them into each other's cups. At the end of the exercise, Pasqua dropped a chemical into the cups in order to reveal how many now contained the salt solution, a staggering 102, displaying how fast and easily disease can be spread.
The presentation had a tangible impact on the thought-processes of all those in attendance and several student-athletes weighed in on what they took away from the evening.
"I thought her way of using humor to educate us on the effects of alcohol on the student-athlete's body was very effective," said Alexis Urbanski, a sophomore on the women's soccer team. "The fluid exchange experiment was very informative and shocking to see the realities of how STDs are transmitted. I definitely hadn't thought about that."
"She was entertaining and her methods of getting the message across worked well because of how she related to us as college students," added men's golf sophomore Kevin Sanislo. "The fluid exchange was extremely educational and I feel like I will now be more aware and informed when I'm out in a social setting."
"Surviving the Party" is just one of the many planned programs sponsored by the H.A.L.L. Program with the objective of providing a well-balanced student-athlete experience at Seton Hall. In the few short months since its inception, the program has already made great strides in strengthening the athletic department's ties to the community while also instituting a number of initiatives that coincide with its five tenets - Leadership Development, Student-Athlete Welfare Enhancement, Academic and Athletic Success Initiatives, Community Enrichment, and Spiritual Growth.
You can also learn more about Elaine Pasqua on her website