ATLANTA (Feb. 23, 2011) - Georgia State sent a group to the 20th annual APPLE Conference, held Jan. 28-30, in Austin, Texas.

GSU was one of nearly 50 schools participating in the three-day conference. The APPLE (Athletic Prevention Programming and Leadership Education) was developed by the Center for Alcohol and Substance Education (CASE) at the University of Virginia to assist in promoting student-athlete institution-specific action plans. Another conference was held in Charlottesville, Va.

Representing GSU was Michael Davis from the football team and Jamiee Freeman from the volleyball team. Academic Advisor Jessica Summey led the group. Also joining in were Rueben Carter, a student assistant worker, and Nick Robinson, a student who is an NCAA Choices representative.

The conference is the leading national training symposium dedicated to substance abuse prevention and health promotion. It is funded by a grant from the NCAA Committee on Competitive Safeguards and Medical Aspects of Sports.

This event was held at the Hyatt Regency Lost Pines in Austin, Texas.

Returning from the conference, GSU's APPLE team plans to make inroads into applying the knowledge gained to the athletics department policies and procedures already in place.

Freeman filed this report for GeorgiaStateSports.com:

During the Apple Conference that was held in Austin Texas, our GSU APPLE team got to meet with other schools and student-athletes from all across the country.

Despite where we came from, we were all at the conference with the same goal in mind: to resolve alcohol and drug abuse within the student-athlete community.

One of the major ideas of the conference was to not necessarily say "no alcohol is bad, but more so to teach our student-athletes how to be responsible with alcohol".

Alcohol is the number one abused substance on college campuses and our APPLE teams were given the task to come up with a plan for GSU in order to cut back on the abuse.

There were different breakout sessions which were composed of other student-athlete panelists educating us on different techniques they have used in the past.

Our GSU group decided that we would focus on our previous policies that have been instituted by our Athletic Department.

I thought that I knew everything I needed to know about drug and alcohol abuse before going to this conference, but I learned a great amount and now hope to share it with others at GSU.