Binge drinking, says Dartmouth College, is a public health challenge that we can all help address.
The approach comes as a new way to help stop dangerous and deadly binge drinking, which destroys lives on almost every national campus. Many universities are working to fight the problem with awareness campaigns, student groups and other measures, but Dartmouth College, says a recent article on The Washington Post, is taking a research-based approach.
Dartmouth President Dr. Jim Yong Kim is leading an example it is hoped other colleges can follow by addressing binge drinking with scientific research and results that can be analyzed and distributed. Called Learning Collaborative on High-Risk Drinking, Dartmouth will encourage other universities to become a part of the project.
Several colleges and universities have agreed to participate in the research on binge drinking, such as Duke, Princeton and Stanford. Many of these universities have taken similar measures in recent years to help save lives lost to binge drinking, including working with police and officials to tighten drinking activities at bars. They have also worked with apartment landlords and student groups, who can also play a role in helping prevent students from drinking binges.
For males, a binge drinking episode is consuming five alcoholic beverages in a two-hour timeframe, and the level considered binge drinking is four beverages for females.
At some universities, the message about binge drinking is directed for new students and freshmen, including courses designed to teach students about the risks and effects of alcohol. The efforts seem to be paying off, with binge drinking levels at Frostburg State University declining 16 percent over a twelve-year period.
Project participants and Dartmouth project leaders hope taking a research-based approach will help encourage campuses to change student perceptions toward binge drinking.