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we’ll tell you how it is.


THE GOOD CHOICES CAMPAIGN The Good Choices Campaign is a Ferris State University campaign that has been in existence since 2000. The campaign’s primary goal is to bring the perception of Ferris student behavior closer to reality. The perception is that Ferris students don´t make good choices but the truth is, they do. This misconception creates phantom peer pressure. Students conform to what they believe to be the norm. The goal of Good Choices is to challenge perceptions and show the reality. It promotes responsible behaviors and informed decisions to reduce alcohol abuse among Ferris students. If you have any questions about the Good Choices Campaign please contact Tom Liszewski by phone at 231-591-5968 or by email at You can also find out more about the campaign at the Good Choices website,














let’s get this show on the road.

INTRODUCTION Many students believe that other students are often irresponsible while drinking, smoking, or with other areas of life. While actually, many Ferris students make good choices on a regular basis. The following programs were designed for you to teach and prepare your residents for situations they might encounter while at college. These programs also address the common misconception that students are always making these bad decisions. Use this handbook to create programs for your residents that will entertain and educate. You can follow the programs step by step or become creative and add your own spin, it’s all up to you!

DRINKING At Ferris, students who choose to drink, do so safely. They make good choices in a variety of ways, ranging from: alternating nonalcoholic beverages with alcoholic ones, calling a taxi, having a designated driver, eating before and after drinking, and always staying with a group of friends. College students may socially drink, but Ferris students make good choices when doing so. Use the following programs to educate your residents on drinking and keep them practicing safe habits.

The downloadable elements for this section are available at

i’m one sloppy dude!

“Make   sure you take a cab if you go out tonight.”

“I  can’t go out tonight, I’ve got a test in the morning.”

DRUNKEN MARIO KART This program teaches residents about drinking and about paying attention while having fun. Have residents race a few turns of Mario Kart while enjoying “shots” of Skittles, Kisses, M&M’s or other small candy. After a bit of time has passed, have the residents stop playing and ask them how many shots they have had. Discuss how easy it is to loose count of drinks while you are enjoying yourself. Then tell the residents that the party is over and they have to drive home now. Have the residents put on a pair of beer goggles and drive another race of Mario Kart to experience the consequences of their actions and the difficulty of trying to drive home drunk.

yeah man, invincibility star!

LEARNING OUTCOME Some residents may be able to play well, so it is important to reiterate to residents that they are playing with a sober mind and drunken eyes. When a person is actually intoxicated, they have impaired judgment. Residents should take away an idea of how it might feel to drive or accomplish a task while their vision is impaired. Students can also be taught the simple rule of “one drink per hour.” Keeping track of how many drinks you consume at a party will keep you and others safe.

OPTIONAL Involve a Public Safety Officer to talk with the residents about drinking and driving from the officers stand point. Have the officer discuss what he or she has seen in the field first hand.

MATERIALS Skittles, Kisses, M&M’s, Mario Kart, Beer Goggles, game console and controllers


PARTY NIGHT Create what residents would see as a social event. Provide drinks and food and various snacks. Employ a resident to walk around and subtly place skittles or any other sweet candy into attendee’s drinks. Use solo cups to serve the drinks. At the same time have a police officer not in uniform attend the party half way through. Have the DPS officer call out the resident slipping skittles into the drinks. Explain to the residents what was happening and ask if any of them noticed him or her placing the skittles into the drinks. Begin a conversation about how to notice individuals drugging drinks and how to address the situation. Follow this up with an explanation of roofies and how to identify their effects.

that dude’s one sneaky snake.

LEARNING OUTCOME This event will demonstrate to residents how easy it is to be roofied while at a social event. It encourages residents to be more cautious while at parties and look out for each other. In turn it also encourages residents to drink less and make better decisions. Residents also learn about roofilin and its effects.

OPTIONAL Either throw this party at the same time as a Halloween event or a holiday party or you could throw this as a stand alone social event.

MATERIALS Skittles or other small candy, DPS officer, food, and drinks




X’S AND O’S Arrange a social event or party (Halloween, welcome party, etc.). Serve food and drinks. On the cups for the drinks, write x’s on some, o’s on others, and then leave some blank. Let the party run as usual until it begins to come to an end. Announce to the party that the x’s and o’s are important and for everyone to look at their cup. Inform the residents that those with x’s have had too much to drink and tried to drive home; they didn’t make it. Those with o’s had drugged drinks and went home with someone they did not know and they don’t remember anything. Those with nothing on their cup made it home safe. Share with the residents some of the statistics that many Ferris students actually practice safe behaviors while drinking. However, let your residents know it is always possible to run into situations similar to this and to be aware while out socializing.

i’m one sloppy dude!

LEARNING OUTCOME This program enlightens residents to situations they may encounter if they choose to socialize outside of the residence halls. Also, residents will learn that many Ferris students are safe while socializing and that this situation is uncommon.

OPTIONAL Get more creative and come up with additional symbols and corresponding scenarios.

MATERIALS Marker, plastic cups, and food


SEX At Ferris, students behave responsibly in sexual situations, and most of them have had fewer than two sexual partners. They know to use condoms to prevent STI’s and birth control pills to prevent pregnancy. College students may have sex, but Ferris students are being safe. Use the following programs to educate your residents and keep them practicing safe sexual behaviors.

The downloadable elements for this section are available at

i’m one sloppy dude!

“I  hope you’re being safe up at school”

“We   always use two methods of birth control”

SEX BINGO A program that educates students on sexual paraphernalia and sexually transmitted diseases. Like typical bingo, sex bingo has a free spot in the center, is a 5 x 5 square card and you pull slips with the square names out of a container. Each square (and slip) is filled with various terms such as condom, lube, herpes, etc from the list provided online. Create a larger list on butcher block paper for your residents to see so when they arrive they can fill out their own bingo card. First person to mark off the typical 5 across, 5 down, or 5 diagonal win. The prizes can range from candy to condoms, lube or anything else you would like to come up with.

hey! i got a bingo!

LEARNING OUTCOME Learning outcomes from sex bingo are to really engage the residents into conversations about sex, which is an uncomfortable topic for many people. As each item from the game is drawn, explain it thoroughly and start a conversation about it, so that other participants also share what they may know.

OPTIONAL As each slip is pulled out, have a group discussion about the item. If the slip is an STD, discuss how it is transmitted and how to prevent it;s if the slip is a sex toy, talk about some safe uses, etc.

MATERIALS Bingo Cards, Prizes, Markers, and Slip Container

SUGGESTED PRIZES Condoms, lube, candy, movies, chocolates, and sparkling juice


SEX AND CANDY Give each resident a paper bag. Have a few RA’s give out candy. Based on statistics provided, RA’s give out a varying amount of candy. Residents go to each RA and collect candy into a bag. Also include one or two larger candy bars, like a Snickers bar, to be placed into a residents bag at one of the stations. These one or two larger candies represent abstinence. Once residents have visited each RA the resident then have a chance to exchange candies with each other. Then you let the residents know that each candy represents an STD. Tell them which candy represents which STD. Inform residents about each STD. You then inform residents the statistics of how many people on average contract each particular disease.

i smell sex and candy here...

LEARNING OUTCOME Resident Advisors can use this program to simulate the real life chances of contracting any number of these disease. Resident Advisors will also inform residents of the statistics to back up the main points of this program.

OPTIONAL You can also include a brochure from the campus counseling center in the paper bag when you first hand them out to attendees.

MATERIALS Paper bags, candy (variety), and snickers (large candy)


SEX IN THE DARK Find or reserve a medium/large area that you can make completely dark. With lights on, bring residents into this area and have them sit in a circle. Once everyone is settled, turn out the lights. Let the residents know that they can ask any question they would like about dating, sex, or the opposite gender. Other residents will respond with complete anonymity. Help the residents begin the Q&A if they are having difficulties. At the beginning of the program create a safe word so that if your residents become uncomfortable at any time, they can stop an offensive or inappropriate conversation.

are you afraid of the dark?

LEARNING OUTCOME There are many questions and mysteries about sex, dating and the opposite sex. This program is a way to end some of these misunderstandings and answer some of the questions in a safe and anonymous environment.

OPTIONAL This program could also be an opportunity to pass out condoms and discuss with your residents the importance of practicing safe sex.

MATERIALS A medium or large room and Butcher block paper to darken windows


DRUGS At Ferris, students are too busy or don’t want to risk smoking marijuana. They are busy in class, studying, working or participating in on-campus events such as hockey games and working out at the University Recreation Center. Some college students may smoke marijuana, but most Ferris students are too busy with their lives to try it. Use the following programs to educate your residents on the use of drugs.

The downloadable elements for this section are available at

“Don’t   let anyone pressure you to smoke pot.”

i’m one sloppy dude!

“I  have an interview next week, it’s not worth it.”

DRUGS IN THE LOBBY Contact your resident hall’s public safety officer to set up a date that is good for him or her to come to your hall to talk about their experiences with drugs and drug users. The officers have great first hand experience and this program creates an opportunity for residents to ask questions openly and freely. Also encourage your residents to ask questions about current laws and on-campus rules that they may not fully understand. Include cider and donuts or soda and wings for refreshments and food.

littering and... littering and...

LEARNING OUTCOME This is a program that really engages the residents and teaches them what is out there as far as drugs go. Hearing stories and seeing what some of these drugs are first hand teaches residents what to look out for. Educating residents as to what drugs are out there and what harm they cause allows for smart decisions.

OPTIONAL Often times the officer will bring a collection of paraphernalia and drugs to show residents. Prior to this presentation, mention to your officer whether you want him or her to bring the collection or not.

MATERIALS Food and drinks


Q&A Invite a DPS officer to have a question and answer session with your residents. If your floor or hall has been having specific issues, be sure to make your visiting officer aware of the issues and have him or her address such issues. If you have been encountered with a particular question several times, be sure that it is mentioned at the session.

hey, bro, what’s happenin’?

LEARNING OUTCOME Rumors and misconceptions about various laws on and off campus can cause trouble within the halls. Ignorance of the law is no excuse. This program enlightens residents to various laws on and off campus that could very well get them in trouble. Also, this program can answer any other questions they may have about other random laws.

OPTIONAL You could prepare for this program by asking residents tough questions on various laws while doing rounds. If the residents cannot answer the question, invite them to the program.

MATERIALS Food, drinks, DPS officer


BUSTED! Set up a situation, similar to Behind Close Doors, where a room is occupied by either volunteer residents or other resident advisors. Much like BCD, have those within the room acting like they are smoking weed and act out the situation of being busted. Have residents watch while you and another co-worker have to alleviate the situation. Once the matter is resolved, explain to residents everything you did and why you did it. Let residents know that these are the steps that RA’s take while dealing with a situation. Also explain why it is necessary that situations much like these need to be handled.

run, it’s the cops!

LEARNING OUTCOME This program allows residents to have first-hand experience with rules and the documentation process. It also gives residents a chance to ask questions and understand the resident advisor’s position.

OPTIONAL Create multiple sceneries in multiple rooms. Contact a DPS officer to have on hand to simulate their portion of a report or documentation.

MATERIALS Empty Room or RA Room and Volunteers


SMOKING At Ferris, students are smart about smoking. They know that cigarettes are harmful to their health, and many stay away from them completely. College students may smoke, but Ferris students know enough about cigarettes to take them seriously. Use the following programs to educate your residents and help them make informed decisions.

The downloadable elements for this section are available at

i’m one sloppy dude!

“What   was that smell on your clothes last night?”

“I  went to a party, but I didn’t smoking anything.”

RING OF FIRE Gather residents into a circle, on the floor or on chairs, inside or outside. Begin a topic on tobacco and smoking cigarettes. Encourage students to discuss things such as: • Why they began smoking or why they never started • If smoking has effected them or their family • If they find members of the opposite attractive if they smoke, why? • How does smoking personally effect them • Do they have a plan to quite • If they have a friend that smokes and how does that make them feel • Or things they miss about being a non-smoker.

love is a burning thing and it makes a fiery ring.

LEARNING OUTCOME This program is a great way to educate your residents about smoking and begin a conversation about the effects that it has on your body, your friends, and others around you.

OPTIONAL Print off the fact/time sheet about smoking and share it with the group. Ask the residents to read over the material and ask them how they feel about the amount of money and time spent on smoking.

MATERIALS Print-outs, chairs or couches


BUDDY SYSTEM Students would sign up during a given period. Advertise the first meeting time during this sign up period. At the meeting, explain to everyone that this program is to help those involved to quit smoking. Provide various methods of quitting (i.e. cold turkey, a patch, lozenge). Students can choose which ever method they want to quite. Recommend students to pair up with a friend or another participant as support will greatly help them achieve their goal. Choose the end date of your choice. By the end of the program, give prizes to those who have successfully quite. For those who may not have quite, encourage them to continue the effort.

hey, thanx bro.

LEARNING OUTCOME This program will show residents how many others are interested in quitting and inspire them to also quite. Other residents on campus don’t smoke or are interested in quitting, this program opens residents’ eyes to the fact that other residents are making good choices.

OPTIONAL Add games and activities to each meeting. Get the group involved and interacting with the other residents working to quite smoking. Play card games, talk about the effects of smoking, or use the provided matrix to illustrate to the residents the amount of time and money saved by not smoking.

MATERIALS Sign-up Sheet and Smoking Time sheet

PRIZES Trophies and plaques SMOKING / 29

GUESS WHO Using note cards or sticky notes, write each term, name, or fact on each from the downloadable fact sheet. Without residents seeing their own note, place the notes either on the residents forehead or on their back. Have residents walk around and ask each other yes or now questions to try and figure out what term they have. When everyone has figured out their word or phrase, explain to the residents the importance or meaning of each term.

knock, knock...

LEARNING OUTCOME This program is a great way to educate your residents about smoking. It gives them information and facts about smoking in a fun and interactive manner.

OPTIONAL Attach this program to another program like Smoking Buddies or Thank You For Smoking.

MATERIALS Drinks, snacks, and Sticky Notes


SAFETY At Ferris, students take their safety seriously. When driving or being a passenger, they know to always wear a seat belt. Students also wear sunscreen, wear helmets and feel safe on campus. Some students may not consider their safety, but Ferris students make good choices about staying safe. Use the following programs to educate your residents and keep them practicing safe behaviors with their own life as well as others.

The downloadable elements for this section are available at

i’m one sloppy dude!

“Don’t   forget your seatbelt when you ride with friends.”

“I  always wear my seat belt when I’m in a car.”

SELF DEFENSE NIGHT For this program, invite the campus Mixed Martial Arts Registered Student Organization, or one of the campus DPS officers, to speak about self defense and its importance to the individual college student. Ask the RSO or officer to show individuals some simple defense techniques and methods to your residents. If you bring the MMA RSO, stress that mixed martial arts is for defense training and not for fighting.

dude, bring it!

LEARNING OUTCOME The learning outcomes from self-defense exposure will give residents more confidence. The techniques will help protect them in case of an attack. This is also lots of fun for the residents and a great way to exercise.

OPTIONAL For drinks you could serve water or powerade. The refreshments should be light and healthy due to the theme of the program.

MATERIALS A clear space for practice and a MMA Instructor/ Representative or a DPS officer


BEACH PARTY Resident Advisor’s would bring residents out into a quad or near a volleyball court. Invite residents to play games, suntan or just relax outside. Provide residents with various activities to do such as volleyball, beach ball, football or frisbee. Give the residents sunscreen and encourage them to use it. Discuss with them the harmful effects that sun exposure can have on ones body and how using sunscreen can help protect them.

party in the usa!

LEARNING OUTCOME Residents would learn about sun exposure, heat exhaustion and various other problems that come with an over-exposure to the sun. Providing residents with sunscreen encourages residents to practice safe behaviors.

OPTIONAL Join your residents in a trip to the beach or tubing down the river while it’s still warm out.

MATERIALS Sunscreen, rood, refreshments, beach ball, etc


KERSPLAT! Either arrange to have a cleanable space indoor or have an outdoor location available. Round up your residents and have them make teams, preferable of two. Provide the residents with a variety of materials and an egg per group. Instruct each group to design a container for the egg so that when it’s dropped it will not break. Give the residents 15 to 20 minutes to complete. Then take the eggs to the cleanable, outside area to be dropped. One by one drop each egg to the ground and see which one survives. Explain to the residents that the egg represents their brain with the protection of a helmet. Ask the residents how many of them wear helmets; how many wear seat belts? Explain that many students on campus actually do take safety precautions everyday, often more than people expect.


LEARNING OUTCOME Residents will learn about how important their body is in a fun and interactive manner. They will also learn that many other students on campus wear their seatbelts, helmets, and other various safety restraints.

OPTIONAL Give away prizes for the egg that can keep the egg safe for the longest amount of time. Come up with various ways of trying to break the egg to determine strength of the “helmet.� For example, drop a book on the egg, smash the egg with your foot, or for a grand finale, run the egg over with a car.

MATERIALS Cardboard, Styrofoam cups, bubble wrap, tissues, toilet paper, plastic bags, cotton, paper, tape, and glue


HEALTH At Ferris, students are concerned with their mental and physical health. They eat the right foods, exercise, and receive the right vaccinations. Students who are concerned with their health know there are services to help them out, like the University Recreation Center and the Counseling Center. Some college students might not care about their health, but Ferris students do. Use the following programs to educate your residents and help to keep them moving and healthy.

The downloadable elements for this section are available at

“Is pizza all you ever eat?”

i’m one sloppy dude!

“I  had a salad for lunch and went to the rec center.”

JUST DANCE If you don’t have a gaming system, fine a Co-RA, friend, or resident willing to share their system and game. Set up in the lobby, using the community television, and play “Just Dance”. This game is geared towards counting calories and measuring the amount of exercise you do while playing. This game gets residents active and socializing while exercising and having fun.

spin that record babe. da doo doo doo.

LEARNING OUTCOME This program gets residents doing what they would typically be doing. The game allows for caloric count and measures your exercise. The residents will learn that exercise does not always mean going to the gym, that there are alternatives that they can do right here in the resident halls. Providing residents with other information about the racquet club and facilities available on campus help equate freshmen to campus.

OPTIONAL Print and hand out the fact sheet for some simple ways to have residents stay active everyday, like taking the stairs or walking instead of driving.

MATERIALS Gaming System (Wii or Kinect), Just Dance game, an open space, lobby television, healthy snacks, and healthy drinks


YOGA Residents would meet in an open area such as the outdoors or in a lobby. Consult the good choices website or do some of your own research if you don’t already know a few yoga moves. Teach your residents some simply, relaxing techniques that are fulfilling and easy to remember. Provide residents with the handout from the website so they can continue practicing the various positions.

don’t just do something, sit there.

LEARNING OUTCOME Residents would learn one of many methods of relieving stress as well as a way of stretching and taking care of your body.

OPTIONAL Make this into a weekly program. Have residents join every weekend or a weeknight. Share information about the Recreation Center and the programs they provide.

MATERIALS Yoga position hand-out, an open space, and water


BIGGEST LOSER Advertise and have your residents sign up. Your sign up period can be however long you feel it’s necessary to get an adequate amount of participants. Next hold an informational meeting. Let residents know what this program entails. At this meeting pick a day of the week that works best for (most) everyone. Plan to have group activities and workouts that day. You can hold games outside, go to the Recreational Center, or watch workout DVD’s. Encourage residents to create a regular workout schedule. Pick another day, preferably a weekend day, during which residents will meet and weigh in. During these meetings, residents will weigh in one by one and the total amount will be recorded. Also during these meetings you can give residents tips on how to eat healthier like what to cut out or not cut out. Decide on an end date for the entire program. By the end of the program, the winner will be decided by the largest percentage of weight loss. Talk to residents while they are participating. Have them notice the number of Ferris students exercising. If residents think that many other people are working out they will be more driven to stick with the program.

give me the lightning and then the thunder.

LEARNING OUTCOME Residents will learn about healthy dieting and exercising while gaining support and collaboration from fellow students and friends within the hall.

OPTIONAL Have residents exercising outside of their schedule. Begin a schedule of your own and regularly invite residents to join you. Give them a little push to keep up with the schedule.

MATERIALS Schedule print-out, Sign-up Sheet and Healthy Choices print-out


To download any of the additional materials for the programs listed in this hand book, visit Counseling Center | 1019 Campus Drive, Big Rapids, MI | 49307 | 231.591.5968 Good Choices Campaign

and that’s the way the cookie crumbles.

2012 Graphic Design Program, Ferris State

The Informer  

The informer contains Good Choices Campaign centered, pre-planned programs for resident advisors to use for their residents when designing a...

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