Did it Stick?

On the day of the assembly, the disturbing realistic scene of a teen drinking and driving accident shocked Seton and Elder students. Seeing classmates involved in the mock accident and even in a body bag really made a big impact on everyone. After the mock accident, the statistics and images shown from texting or drinking and driving were awful. Those images especially stuck with the students. Courtney Schira was involved in making the scene as powerful as it was. She was the girl that was put into the body bag. She said, “It was a pretty surreal feeling. I knew I was able to get out of the body bag but it was still somewhat scary knowing this is what can happen if you drive distracted. I think it gave me a new perspective on distracted driving than any video or story ever will since I was actually put in the situation.” Right after an assembly like that everybody says they will never text and drive or drink and drive. Or that they would stop texting and driving or drinking and driving. But a week and a half removed from the assembly I wanted to find out if the assembly was still influencing our driving. I know I still remember those images every time I feel the need to pick up my phone when I’m driving. Some of the students I talked to said that the assembly has changed them for good, but some admitted that its impact has faded away, and they’ve fallen back into their old habits. Tyler Nieberding said, “The assembly taught me to be more careful when I’m driving. I try to stay more aware of the people driving around me and keep good distance. I will always wear my seat belt now.” Anthony Stacklin said, “It’s a constant reminder in the back of my mind about the consequences of poor driving.” Some students who wished to remain unnamed said, “It has sort of just faded away, the presentation was gruesome but it’s hard to get out of habits.” “For me it changed me for a few days, but I just kinda fell back into my old habits. It’s a lot harder to change your driving than most people think.” Students at Seton had the same split reactions that Elder students had. Emily Hayhow, a senior from Seton, is still being impacted by what she saw during the assembly. Emily said, “ It definitely still influences my driving. I am more aware of the way I drive and I am more cautious when it comes to other drivers. Because of the assembly I am more responsible when behind the wheel.” Taylor Kuhl, a senior at Seton high school also said, “It has actually has made me alot more aware. When I do pick up my phone to text while driving, the assembly hits me right away and I put my phone away, usually in my purse or the glove compartment.” A student at Seton who didn’t want to be named said, “I really am trying to cutdown on my texting and driving, but it’s just a bad habit. Hopefully I keep getting better and better with it.” None of the students who thought the assembly’s impact has faded wanted to be named, but their opinions still need to be heard. “I just kind of pushed it to the back of my mind. I try not to think about it.” “Honestly, for me it just faded with time.” “It’s just so hard to break habits that I’ve been doing for the past two years. From all the students I talked to, I feel like the assembly was a success. There is no way that one assembly can change everybody. But just preventing a portion of the students from creating bad habits, or continuing them can save lives. So I feel contributing part of a day to this cause was completely worth it.