As college students around the country settle in for the spring semester, a new infographic from 12Keys provides an interesting picture of the role alcohol plays on campus.
Big Drinking on Campus
In 2012, an estimated 21.6 million students enrolled in fall classes and 80% of them had an alcoholic drink at some point. Of those students who drank, roughly 50% showed binge drinking tendencies. That’s 8.5 million students, or more people than there are in the entire state of Virginia.
Think being an athlete deters students from drinking? Think again. Nearly 90% of athletes have reported drinking.
Female students tend to consume 4 drinks per week versus male students, who drink more than double the amount at 9 drinks a week. Persons become at-risk drinkers, or those most likely to become alcoholic, when the number of drinks per week climb. In at-risk women, the number of drinks per week is 7 per week; for men the number is 14.
Reasons to Be Concerned About College Drinking
Excessive drinking by college students can have major consequences. Each year:
- A quarter of students have issues with academics as a result of drinking. They miss class, fall behind and suffer from poor and failing grades.
- Roughly 600,000 students are injured unintentionally while under the influence of alcohol. About 690,000 individuals of college age report having been assaulted by someone who was drinking.
- More than 1,800 college students die from alcohol related incidents and injuries.
Parents and teens need to have honest conversations about the reality of alcohol and drug misuse before students head off to college. Being away from home means more freedom and independence, and when students have sound information about the dangers of alcohol misuse they are more likely to make better choices.
If parents and students avoided “party schools” and colleges that fail to address alcohol issues, would administrators take college drinking more seriously?