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Feb. 2, 1998

UVa Student-Athletes to Participate in San Diego Conference

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. -- Three University of Virginia student-athletes have been selected to participate in the seventh Athletic Prevention, Programming and Leadership Education (APPLE) Conference scheduled for February 6-8 in San Diego, Calif. Over 50-student-athletes plus athletic trainers, coaches and administrators representing 22 colleges and universities from all three National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) divisions are scheduled to attend the conference.

The three Virginia student-athletes are soccer player Angela Hucles (Virginia Beach, Va.), football player Thomas Jones (Big Stone Gap, Va.) and lacrosse player Mark Murphy (Marcellus, N.Y.). They were chosen based on their participation in the Student Athlete Mentor (SAM) program, their representation of diverse athletic teams and their willingness to dedicate themselves to substance use prevention efforts.

Also attending the conference from UVa are women's head soccer coach April Heinrichs, athletic department administrative intern Michelle Flynn, Senior Associate Director of Athletics Craig Littlepage and Michelle Samuels of the University's Office of the Dean of Students.

The APPLE model of drug and alcohol prevention and leadership was created in 1991 by Susan Grossman, associate director for prevention programs at UVa's Institute for Substance Abuse Studies (ISAS), and Dr. Joe Gieck, head athletic trainer at Virginia. The model provides a way for athletic departments to assess and improve their alcohol and drug prevention programs. At the weekend-long conference, the 120 attendees, divided into "prevention teams," will appraise their school's recruiting, expectations, attitudes, policies, drug testing, discipline, referral and counseling. Each school's team is comprised of four to six people including a student-athlete.

Student-athletes may participate in the APPLE model through the Student Assistant/Athlete Mentor (SAM) Program , a peer-based program designed to train students in substance abuse prevention and to provide teammates and peers with resources for information and services in their community.

Two annual conferences have been hosted by ISAS for the last five years, one in Charlottesville and another on the West Coast. ISAS has received a grant from the NCAA for the past seven years to teach the APPLE concept as a model for prevention programs.


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A 1985 graduate of UVA, White worked at the Richmond Times-Dispatch until July 2009. He was honored six times as the state's Sportswriter of the Year.

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