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J Am Coll Health. 2007 Nov-Dec;56(3):325-32.

Evaluation results of a 21st birthday card program targeting high-risk drinking.

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Office of Survey Research, Michigan State University's (MSU), East Lansing, MI, USA.


The B.R.A.D. Birthday Card initiative was started on the campus of Michigan State University (MSU) in April 1999. MSU administrators send the safe-drinking 21st birthday card (B.R.A.D.) and laminated wallet card to students shortly before their 21st birthday.


To evaluate the effectiveness of the 21st birthday card, MSU and B.R.A.D., Inc, applied for and were awarded a 2-year US Department of Education grant in 2001.


The authors surveyed 1,731 students within 2 weeks of their 21st birthday.


Of all students turning 21 years old during the study, the authors randomly selected students for each group. A control group received no card. All others received the standard B.R.A.D. card or a gender-tailored message card.


Key findings include: 74% of students saved part of the card, 65% shared the card with family or friends, 22% reported thinking about the card during their celebration, 12% reported drinking less because of the card, 15% reported learning something new about alcohol poisoning, and 98% believed that MSU and B.R.A.D. should continue sending cards to students.


Receiving, reading, and recalling the content of the B.R.A.D. card appears to reduce the total number of drinks a celebrant consumes.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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