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RHS grads discuss peer pressure with teens
Dec 2, 2013 - By Alejandra Silva, Staff Writer
Former Riverton High School students met with teens in the high school's Changing Attitudes Now Club on Wednesday.
College students Jarett Watson, Jordan Belville, Seth Hosking and John Reddon comprised the first group of students who plan to visit the school. The four graduated from RHS within the last few years.
They visited the school Wednesday to tell a group of students what they have done in the course of their college career to avoid dangerous situations involving alcohol. They also offered advice on how to be strong leaders in the community and at school.
"They wanted to help in some way," Reddon said of the college students.
The teens who participated in the discussion were a mix of athletes, club members, students unaffiliated with any group, students who excel academically, and students who said they have experienced peers pressuring them to drink.
Recent graduates and current high school students and faculty members said they are hearing more stories involving alcohol use by Riverton High School students.
Reddon said CAN Club members know the problem is present and that it is becoming a bigger issue.
The high school CAN Club was created to build positive peer pressure and help students make better choices, said club adviser Jill Reddon.
In the one-hour discussion, the four college students talked about the activities they do that keep them away from drinking, and they offered alternatives for when friends suggest drinking.
Watson said it is easy for one drink to ruin a person's life.
"You go to a party and have one drink, and you say you're OK driving home, and you're driving home and a little girl runs out in front of you and you hit her and you kill her," Watson told the group. "If you have anything in your system, you're going for murder."
The group also discussed the bad reputations that can come from wild parties and drinking.
Jill Reddon and the four visitors shared stories of individuals who got caught up in drinking and had unfortunate circumstances follow, situations involving law enforcement, interrupted personal lives and trips to the hospital.
"We are not immune from anything for being in a small town," Jill Reddon said. "There's things that you don't think can happen to you."
Jill Reddon asked the group if they could use positive pressure to get their friends to have a good time without alcohol. They also were asked if they had ever said no to drinking and how that affected their friendships.
"It's nice to know there are others with us who don't drink," freshman Kyli Yorgason said.
Another group of former students plans to visit RHS in mid-December.