DALLAS, Oct. 18 – This month, students at more than 1,000 college and university campuses around the country will celebrate National Collegiate Alcohol Awareness Week (NCAAW), October 17-23, 2004. The week, supported by the National Athletic Trainers’ Association (NATA), promotes personal responsibility and respect for the law when it comes to the consumption of alcohol beverages. NCAAW has grown to become the largest single alcohol-education event in all of academia because students take ownership in designing and implementing this observance for their campus communities. Schools have the opportunity to showcase healthy lifestyles free from the abuse or illegal use of alcohol and to combat negative stereotypes of college drinking behavior. Students will participate in numerous events, designed to reinforce responsible attitudes toward drinking and respect for current state laws and school policies. The program also helps administrators and students launch and/or strengthen year-round prevention efforts. "What has set this program apart and contributed to its growth is its approach," said Dr. Edward Hammond, NCAAW's chair and president of Fort Hays State University in Kansas. "Ultimately, this isn't about alcohol, but attitudes. We don't preach, we educate, and we empower students to take responsibility for their own decisions and environment."