Prevention & Education Partnership PEP Talks
NYU Langone’s Prevention and Education Partnership (PEP) trains and mobilizes doctors, trainees, and other medical professionals to deliver PEP Talks, our innovative drug education curriculum for middle school and high school students.
PEP instructors from the Ronald O. Perelman Department of Emergency Medicine, as well as a growing number of NYU Langone departments and partner institutions, reach classrooms and auditoriums all over the city.
We offer PEP Talks training to members of NYU Langone and local institutions.
PEP Talks engage medical professionals in conversations with teens about the risks of legal substances, such as alcohol, nicotine, and prescription opioids; and illicit substances, such as marijuana, synthetic cannabinoids, amphetamines, and heroin.
Since 2015, we have achieved the following:
- partnered with the New York City (NYC) Department of Education
- partnered with the NYC Poison Control Center, part of the NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene
- engaged schools throughout all five boroughs
- trained more than 500 medical students, residents, fellows, faculty, and substance use counselors
- delivered hundreds of PEP Talks
- taught thousands of middle school and high school students in NYC public schools
Learn more about our impact on local communities.
Upcoming PEP Talks
If you’re interested in scheduling a PEP Talk at your school, or if you’re a medical professional interested in giving a PEP Talk, please contact us.
PEP Talks Curriculum
Our modular substance use prevention curriculum encourages open and honest conversations among teens and medical professionals about the substances today’s teens are most likely to encounter. We offer the following PEP Talks modules.
Alcohol and Xanax
Alcohol remains the most widely used substance among young people. This PEP Talk reveals how alcohol and benzodiazepines (such as Xanax®) act similarly in the brain, demonstrates how easy it is to overdose on alcoholic beverages, and explains why both substances are harmful and highly addictive.
With an average of six deaths per day in the United States caused by alcohol poisoning alone, effective education around drinking responsibly remains as important as ever.
Heroin and Prescription Opioids
Opioid overdose is a leading cause of preventable death in the United States and a leading cause of death among teens. This PEP Talk compares heroin with prescription opioids, explains why overdose so frequently results in death, and offers instruction on how to identify and treat an opioid overdose with naloxone.
By educating teens on the risks of prescription opioid misuse as a gateway to opioid dependence, addiction, and overdose, we can be prepared to combat the greatest public health crisis of our time.
Marijuana, Edibles, and Synthetic Cannabinoids
As many as one in four high school students admits to using marijuana in some form. This PEP Talk describes the impact of marijuana use on the teenage brain, demonstrates why people frequently overdose on edibles, and highlights the dramatic differences between marijuana and synthetic cannabinoids (known as K2).
With legalization or decriminalization a new reality in many states, open conversations are necessary to deliver vital information to a population unknowingly at risk.
Nicotine, Vaping, and JUUL
In 2018, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration declared that teen vaping is an epidemic. This PEP Talk underscores nicotine’s addictive potential, describes the harms associated with vaping, and details how JUUL has taken lessons from Big Tobacco in advertising its products directly to young people.
As new studies find serious harms associated with vaping, it is increasingly important to debunk the widely held belief among teens that vaping is harmless.