The UA student population is reaching an all-time high, but alcohol consumption rates have declined significantly, according to the Campus Health Service.
Across the nation, students can be pressured into drinking, and a lack of education about alcohol consumption and risk reduction strategies can contribute to binge drinking. The UA offers programs that continue to grow, such as Brief Alcohol Screening and Intervention for College Students.
Campus Health research confirms that alcohol-related protective strategies, such as having a designated driver or setting a limit on the number of drinks an individual will drink in one night, has increased among UA students. According to Campus Health, between 2002 and 2012, statistics highlighted the progress seen from the programs offered at the UA.
According to Campus Health, the average number of drinks consumed per week decreased from 7.6 to 4.4, heavy episodic drinking decreased from 13.5 percent to 6.1 percent and there was an increase from 36 percent to 51 percent in students who set a limit on the number of drinks they planned to consume. Campus Health also documented that the percentage of students who didn’t consume alcohol in the past 30 days increased from 23 percent to 31 percent.
Salafsky said a minority of students drink the majority of the alcohol. About 80 percent of alcohol is consumed by 20 percent of the student population, according to Salafsky.
Hollyn Forney, a marketing sophomore, chooses not to drink but said that her personal decisions don’t stop her from having an enjoyable time with her friends.
The UA has also created programs that specifically cater to Greek Life to educate members about alcohol use. Fraternities and sororities engage in programs that require every member to complete an educational class.
Campus Health is now offering eCHECKUP TO GO, an interactive web survey about a person’s drinking habits that all freshmen are required to complete.
“When people think of college, they think of movies like ‘American Pie’ or ‘Animal House,’” said Travis Roser, engineering sophomore. “Drinking becomes a social norm.”
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