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Clarke Hall
Virginia Wesleyan College
1584 Wesleyan Drive
Norfolk , VA 23502
Phone: 757.455.3359
Fax: 757.233.8743


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Student Research Projects

The Drug and Alcohol Use of Female College Student Athletes and Sorority Women

Student Julie A. Maggioncalda
Faculty Mentor(s)
Department Health and Human Services
Course Social Sciences 351: Research Methods for the Social Sciences


This research concerns the risk taking behaviors that female college students engage in while in the college environment. The research involves four main groups. Three of the college age groups of women are members of women’s collegiate sports teams at a National Collegiate Athletics Association Division III, liberal-arts college in Virginia. One of the teams is a team that is currently competing in intercollegiate play during the time of the study; one of the teams has a group exercise regime in place for as a form of their preseason workout, while the final team is in their off-season. The other two groups are members of two different sororities on the campus of that same college. The research explores the alcohol consumption and drug use by these female college students through a detailed survey. The researcher gave a paper survey to each participant that asked how frequently she engages in these activities on a weekly and monthly basis. Assuring each participant that the data that she reported is confidential helped to encourage honest responses, maintaining the validity of the data. The research explores the differences between the risk taking behavior of college age female athletes and sorority members. The research also reveals the distinctions between risk taking behaviors of athletes in season versus those that are not currently playing. The research also compares alcohol and drug use at a small, liberal arts college in the Mid-Atlantic region with those of the national averages for each female athletic team and for female sorority members. Furthermore, the research differentiates between two sororities on the campus, allowing for comparisons between the sororities. Overall, the research investigates trends in college age, female risk taking behavior concerning the members of two distinct campus organizations.

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