Under the Influence
Authors: Harley Barnard, Jeanette Boyle-Wheeler, April Davis, Zachary Dismer, Melody Higgins, Gabe Pinckney, and Lauren Valenti
Faculty Supervisor: Dawana Gibbs, MSN, RN, CNE
This project provided an engaging, interactive learning experience about the dangers of substance abuse and impaired driving; which are two major health issues affecting the adolescent population. We partnered with the Glynn County Police Department to educate 15 health sciences students at the Golden Isles Career Academy in Brunswick, Georgia. The GCPD provided several sets of fatal vision goggles to simulate the impairment experienced by individuals who are under the influence of alcohol and drugs. The students wore the goggles while attempting a variety of tasks that challenged fine and gross motor skills, such as picking up small objects (keys, credit cards, etc.), texting, and navigating a short obstacle course. The students also participated in a presentation on the health and safety risks associated with substance abuse. At the conclusion of the event, the students were given safe driving pledges to take home and share with parents, which will encourage open communication between students and their parents on this topic. As nursing students, this project gave us the opportunity to practice teamwork, leadership, and promote public health and safety in our community.