Do college settings encourage drinking? Probably, students say

For many, the col­lege set­ting encour­ages edu­ca­tion through its aca­d­e­mic resources and pro­vides for social con­nect­ed­ness with career seek­ers alike — but for some, it can act as a moti­va­tor for alco­hol consumption.

“I think stu­dents have more free­dom [at col­lege] than at home, depend­ing on how they use their time,” said Kristy McGif­fert, Health Edu­ca­tor at UWS, as she weighed the effects col­lege set­tings can have on stu­dents’ poten­tial desire to con­sume alcohol.

Eight UWS stu­dents were asked recently whether they thought col­lege set­tings encour­age stu­dent alco­hol con­sump­tion. Their thoughts were sim­i­lar in many ways, as they all deter­mined col­lege set­tings to encour­age stu­dent alco­hol con­sump­tion to some extent.

“It encour­ages it more than it goes against,” said stu­dent Zach Brun­ner, who noted the sale of alco­hol at Jacket Java as “encour­ag­ing it somewhat.”

“When you’re at col­lege, you want to fit in—you’re up for some things you wouldn’t nor­mally do,” another stu­dent explained.

Ash­ley Web­ster, also a stu­dent, explained her impres­sion that substance-free cam­puses have “even more promi­nent” stu­dent use of alco­hol than other cam­puses. – “[To] be rebels,” she referred to as one pos­si­ble explanation.

Recently there was an alcohol-awareness effort put on at UWS by the Stu­dent Health and Coun­sel­ing Ser­vices, where stu­dents and any­one else had the chance to talk with those involved with the SHCS and view the alcohol-related infor­ma­tion dis­played at their tables.

“They like the pro­mo­tion we do,” said McGif­fert, who’s involved with the SHCS. “A lot of times they take the info,” then explain their inten­tions involv­ing it, such as putting it up on the fridge, she explained.

The deci­sion to drink alco­hol can be a dif­fer­ence maker for whether stu­dents receive pass­ing or fail­ing grades. Accord­ing to a flier dis­played at one of SHCS’s tables, “A” stu­dents con­sume an aver­age of between zero and 4.21 drinks per week, while “D” and “F” stu­dents aver­age 9.97 drinks per week.

“We have to think of cre­ative ways to get stu­dents’ atten­tion,” explained McGif­fert. “Stu­dents are impacted in dif­fer­ent ways—[we try to] have an impact on them.”

Print Friendly