RADD®, the entertainment Industry's voice for road safety, has announced the successful conclusion of its third year of the California College DUI Awareness Project, conducted in partnership with UC Irvine's Health Education Center funded by a grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety, through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. The statewide project recruits college campuses to promote RADD's designated driver rewards program. It also recruits local bars/restaurants to participate by providing special "RADD Rewards" such as free sodas and food, to students who serve as the designated driver for their friends.
Collectively, the 12 participating campuses enroll an impressive total of 345,000 students. According to RADD President, Erin Meluso, “Each campus is fiercely independent. Yet some, like UC Davis and Sacramento State, and USC and UCLA are major rivals. However, all of our campuses agree on one thing: RADD’s “Plan Ahead!” message, which encourages students to agree to use a designated driver, call a cab/friend or take public transportation before going out to socialize.”
To raise awareness on each campus, the RADD Car, a brightly wrapped 2012 Scion xB, donated to RADD by Toyota Motor Corp USA, travels to major campus events. In its first year, the RADD Car has logged 18,000 miles and visited 11 campuses throughout the state, and even joined a summer safety event at the Marine Recruiting Depot in San Diego.
“What makes this project attractive to campuses is its versatility,”
In addition to support for campus events, the California College DUI Project provides participating campuses with RADD Project materials in the form of posters, pledge cards, wristbands and RADD Crew t-shirts to identify peer educators. It also supplies marketing support, staffing assistance for major campus events, training materials, and hands-on training for college staff and student peer educators.
Thanks to the generous grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety, all services are free to participating campuses. Participating bars/restaurants also receive posters and other signage at no cost.
Participating campuses are grouped into four Regions – Sacramento, Los Angeles, Orange County and San Diego. They partner around shared hospitality zones like Midtown Sacramento, Downtown Los Angeles and Pacific Beach in San Diego. In addition, they also individually recruit local establishments to help create unique RADD programming on their campuses.
• In the San Diego Region, tacos are donated by Pacific Beach’s Shore Club, an active RADD Rewards bar partner, as a successful strategy at University of California, San Diego (UCSD); San Diego State University (SDSU); University of San Diego (USD), and California State University, San Marcos (CSUSM). Free food is always a draw to attract students to campus wellness and music events where they receive a RADD pledge card.
• Orange County Region’s University of California, Irvine (UCI) and California State University, Fullerton (CSUF) successfully engaged their campus housing, the student government and food service departments to integrate the RADD safety message into campus life.
• The Los Angeles Region’s anchor has been University of Southern California (USC). This year, campus participation has grown to include University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) and California State University, Northridge (CSUN). Bar recruitment efforts by all three campuses this year are fully opening the region by expanding the roster of RADD Rewards establishments from a focus on Downtown LA to include West Side, Valley and Hollywood establishments.
• In the Northern California Region, California State University, Sacramento (Sacramento State) and University of California, Davis (UCD), were joined mid-year by the University of the Pacific (Pacific) located in Stockton. Pacific is actively recruiting RADD Rewards establishments. Tailgate activities at Sacramento State football games and festive “welcome” events for new students at UCD capped off a busy year.
For more information, please visit: www.collegeisRADD.org
Dawna Shuman, Lighthouse Public Relations
Erin Meluso, RADD