On September 22-24, over 200 student-athletes and administrators came to Reston, VA, to participate in the second NCAA Division II APPLE Training Institute. They represented thirty-five schools from all across the country, including Alaska and Hawaii. APPLE staff tailored the curriculum to address the specific needs of NCAA Division II student-athletes.
A large majority of the attendees had not attended APPLE before and really valued the opportunity to come together and learn about best practices in substance abuse prevention. One athletics administrator commented "to be honest we had no idea really what to expect heading into this training. But it was one of the best forums I have personally attended. Everyone that joined me loved it. We felt that we left the training with a very good idea of a program that we wanted to implement on our campus. We are so excited to meet again and get our ideas and thoughts on paper and charge forward with our plan."
Seventy-seven percent of schools decided to focus on the Education slice of the APPLE model. Many of these schools plan to implement student-athlete mentor programs at their campus. Other action plans included creating a video contest on alcohol misuse, bystander intervention training and holding monthly educational training for their athletes.
Participants valued the time spent networking with other NCAA Division II attendees. Specifically the student-athletes bonded over their shared experiences. One wrote, "the best aspect of the training was that I got to meet other athletes who compete in Division II athletics."