Invest in students like Stephanie

Invest in students like Stephanie

We know there are many worthy organizations vying for your attention as you consider making year-end gifts, and that Students for Sensible Drug Policy is just one of them. That’s why I wanted to take a moment to remind you that when you give to SSDP, you’re also making an investment in the future. You see, students often come to us with minimal advocacy experience and a passion for dismantling the War on Drugs, but they graduate having developed organizing and reform skills that will continue to serve their communities for the rest of their lives. 

Stephanie Izquieta is one of those students. Now a senior, Stephanie founded the Binghamton University, State University of New York chapter in her junior year. She has served as president since fall of 2013, and has grown the chapter to a strong and active 15 members. Among her efforts, Stephanie focuses on campus coalition building, and specifically hopes to help build bridges between the drug policy reform community and the Latino community which is so often disproportionately impacted by the War on Drugs.

Stephanie Izquieta

“Sensible drug policy is about so much more than reducing the negative consequences associated with drug use. It’s about the opportunity to combat ignorance with information by helping others make better, safer choices. And when that opportunity comes, we should take it.”

Binghamton University has enacted a marijuana and alcohol equalization policy, which reduces the penalty for using marijuana on campus so that such infractions are punished no more harshly than campus alcohol use infractions. Campus marijuana policy violations can have lasting detrimental effects on a young person’s life: disciplinary records, loss of housing, loss of scholarships, and drug testing are only a few of the obstacles created by draconian campus policies that punish marijuana more harshly than alcohol. By reducing these sanctions, we’re able to keep students focused on their education. The SSDP members are currently planning an educational campaign to disseminate information about the new policy to fellow students. 

Stephanie serves on the Boards of Directors for Students for Sensible Drug Policy and the Student Net Alliance, empowering students to protect their interests online. She is also the TEDx director at Binghamton University, a Google Student Ambassador for her university, and a McNair Scholar, and served as a summer intern with the Drug Policy Alliance. 

When she graduates this spring, Stephanie hopes to work in the drug policy reform movement for a few years to gain on-the-ground experience prior to commencing graduate studies in Crime and Drug Policy. Make an investment in Stephanie, students across the country just like her, and the future of drug policy reform with your gift of any amount to SSDP today. 

P.S.  In case you missed it, we got some exciting news yesterday! An anonymous donor from California is so excited about the Campus Campaign that they pledged to match every dollar raised for the 2015-2016 campaign, up to $50,000! Make your gift online today to double your impact and support the Campus Campaign!