Boredom can often be a factor while studying, so every once and a while every student needs activities to break the monotony.’ Students who want to let loose on their free time might want to check out www.hammered.org.
According to the official site, Hammered helps students organize and highlight fun alternatives to alcohol and other drug use.
Hammered was created by Ken Procaccianti, a former Northeastern University student in Boston who was ‘looking for something to do.’ Before the site, Hammered began as an organized chapter Procaccianti started within his college. Procaccianti used simple flyers to spread the word about Hammered not expecting much, but the concept proved to have a healthy following.
‘I expected 15 or 17 people but 75 or 80 students came in,’ said Procaccianti, who admits he was shocked when it took off.
The website has recently been launched by the founder and has garnered a decent amount of support due to word-of-mouth and social networks.’
Positive organizations like Hammered could be seen as beneficial. A study conducted by the National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse (CASA) says that nearly half of America’s 5.4 million full-time college students abuse drugs and or alcohol at least once a month. Some of the reasons why the numbers for substance abuse is so high among American college students are due to social acceptance of binge drinking and drug use.
Procaccianti, who doesn’t drink or do drugs, didn’t want people like himself to feel pressured into using substances recreationally just to interact with their peers.
‘I wanted to create something that would be inclusive, where students can have fun without drinking or doing drugs,’ said Procaccianti.
The site itself has a clean and simple interface that’s very intuitive. The homepage set-up shows events and places occurring on or around a given date. There’s a list of different cities across the nation with corresponding event links to them. The way the site works is students can search for an event nearest to them along with other events in their surrounding areas. The Hammered homepage gives people the choice to: do stuff, add stuff, tag stuff, start a chapter and of course, learn what Hammered is all about.
The site also gives students the unique option to add events that may be happening in their area and post them on the site. For example, if tacos were being given away for free at a restaurant somewhere in Northridge, one click on the activity gives people information on exactly where it will take place, when and who posted it. Hammered also has an online store that sells ironic tee shirts, mugs and other memorabilia. All the money earned from these items are used to support the site.
Norma Alvarez, a junior biology major, finds the site to be a good thing.
‘I think that Hammered is an alternative,’ Alvarez said ‘People would be more encouraged to be more straight edged and not get pressured into doing drugs.’
Procaccianti said the most important thing about this student organization is that it takes a sense of humor towards an alternative lifestyle and doesn’t come off as ‘preachy,’ but rather, he wanted to create ‘something that was refreshing.’
Carlos Diaz, a junior business major, likes the idea of Hammered because it was something he felt he could promote.
‘I think it’s kind of cool,’ Diaz said ‘There is other stuff to do besides drinking.’
Diaz is the vice president of Phi Delta Theta, one of the dry housing fraternities on campus, which means they cannot have alcohol on their property.
Through MySpace and Facebook, Hammered has the ability to teach broader audiences how to avoid substance abuse and how to form more chapters on university campuses.’ CSUN, unfortunately, doesn’t have a chapter on hammered.org yet, but Procaccianti encourages that anyone is welcome to join and create one.