Students to Sponsor Panel Discussion on DWI

Students at William Woods University are trying to do something about the college drinking problem that has captured the attention of the nation’s media in recent weeks.

A social work class called “Theory and Practice of Victimology” will host a Mother’s Against Drunk Driving (MADD) Victim Impact Panel on campus in conjunction with National Crime Victims Rights Week. The panel discussion will take place from 4 to 5 p.m. Wednesday, April 24, in the Library Auditorium.

“The class was given the task of developing a project to bring awareness of victim issues and victim rights during this week of recognition,” George Garner, assistant professor of social work, said.

“They chose DWI crashes as the topic and the campus as the target audience. We contacted the Central Missouri MADD Chapter, who thought it was a great idea, and one they had never participated in for victims rights week, even on a national level (to their knowledge)—so they were excited about it as well.”

Such panels are usually conducted for first-time DWI and minor in possession offenders for awareness on their behavior. Victims who have been impacted through their own experience or the loss of a loved one due to a DWI crash talk to the audience about the experience.

Garner said, “These are typically very powerful for offenders, often without a dry-eye in the audience. We are hoping to impact our campus in a powerful way, as well.”

Students from local high schools have been invited to the presentation, which is also open to the public. For more information, call (573) 592-1698.