West Virginia State University to Participate in Statewide Initiative to Provide Lifesaving Measures on Campus

Contact: Jack Bailey
(304) 766-4109
February 2, 2022
West Virginia State University to Participate in
Statewide Initiative to Provide Lifesaving Measures on Campus
INSTITUTE, W.Va. – West Virginia State University (WVSU) is participating in an overdose prevention initiative, created for West Virginia college and university campuses, entitled, “Be The One.”

The initiative is the first of its kind and will focus on opioid overdose prevention from a bystander’s perspective, encouraging students, staff, and faculty to be the one to save a life.

The first project of the initiative includes the distribution and installation of 50 opioid overdose rescue kits, also known as “Naloxboxes,” on college and university campuses across the Mountain State. WVSU will be receiving six kits for its campus. The boxes will be placed on campus in Wallace Hall, James C. Wilson University Union, Keith Scholars Hall, Dawson Hall, Davis Fine Arts Center, and the Monroe Athletic Complex. These kits contain two doses of the opioid reversal medication, Naloxone, and training materials instructing individuals how to administer Naloxone during an active overdose.

“West Virginia State University is proud to join with other colleges and universities across the state to participate in this first of its kind program in the country to focus on overdose prevention,” said WVSU Interim President Ericke Cage. “The reality in our state is that we still have a high number of opioid overdoses and being on the forefront in providing an educational program like this is an important step to combatting that.”

The Be The One initiative was created in partnership of the West Virginia Collegiate Recovery Program (WVCRN) and the West Virginia Drug Intervention Institute (WVDII), with the goal of increasing prevention and recovery efforts on West Virginia campuses, educating individuals in medication safety, and training them how to properly respond to an overdose.

We believe naloxone should be easily accessible everywhere and through our partnerships with WVDII, colleges and universities around the state are decreasing the stigma and providing vital resources to help save lives,” said Susie Mullens, director of the WVCRN.

As someone who worked on college campuses for 25 years, and also responded to campus overdoses, Dr. Susan Bissett, president of the WVDII believes that this initiative is much needed.

“College campuses are representative of the communities in which they are housed; and they are often the hub for activity in their town,” said Bissett. “Our campus buildings have AEDs, first aid kits and fire extinguishers and so the Naloxbox is just one more way to keep our campuses, our students and our communities safe.”

For more information regarding West Virginia State University’s participation in the Be The One initiative, contact Kellie Toledo, Director of Counseling Services, at toledoke@wvstateu.edu or (304) 766-3262.

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West Virginia State University is a public, land grant, historically black university, which has evolved into a fully accessible, racially integrated, and multi-generational institution, located in Institute, W.Va. As a “living laboratory of human relations,” the university is a community of students, staff, and faculty committed to academic growth, service, and preservation of the racial and cultural diversity of the institution. Its mission is to meet the higher education and economic development needs of the state and region through innovative teaching and applied research.
- WVSU –
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