The first month or two at college can set the tone for a student’s success or lay the path to disaster. Freshmen who believe that fitting in at college equals heavy drinking often have their college career get off to a very bumpy start.
Alcohol consumption on university campuses is a long-standing but growing concern around the country. Negative behaviors associated with over-consumption of alcohol have become a focus for school policymakers.
Fall term is well underway on college campuses all across the country. Incoming freshmen and returning college students are once again away from home, charged with the duty of cramming their still-developing minds with learning. Along with tremendous educational opportunities, students are also faced with some serious decisions about how to spend their independence from home. For many college students a return to school means more opportunities to get together with friends and drink large amounts of alcohol.
Sexual assault is a significant issue on college and university campuses nationwide, and unfortunately one that does not get the attention it deserves. While the popular perception of academic institutions is often of “ivory towers” where young adults are sheltered from the harsher realities, research shows that college women are actually at greater risk for sexual assault and rape in the United States than women their age overall, and in the population in general.
While drinking is not the root cause of domestic violence, it does factor frequently in the cases of women and men who are abused by someone in their home. The National Coalition against Domestic Violence (NCADV) states that one in four women will be involved in domestic violence at one point in their lifetime. Nearly one-quarter to half of all the cases of domestic violence are initiated after someone has used alcohol or drugs.
Among the dangers and risks associated with binge drinking, says a recent article, is a connection to a higher likelihood of sexual assault. The study, conducted by researchers at the University of Buffalo, is one of only a few to examine the ways young adult women change their attitudes toward alcohol at college and if these changes are related to a higher possibility of being involved in a sexual assault.
A recent study was conducted on the effects of pub closing hours in 18 different Norwegian cities to see if there was any change in the amount of violence regarding operating hours. The study found that with an extension of closing time, violence increased by 16 percent and usually averaged around 20 instances of violence per night based on 100,000 people annually.
According to Medical News Today, the results showed that hours of operation in the bars and pubs affected overall incidents of violence. If hours were increased, the violence increased and if the operating hours decreased, so did the violence.
Alcohol and violence often go hand in hand, sometimes with deadly results. University of Virginia student and lacrosse player George Huguely has been charged with the murder of his former girlfriend, fellow classmate and lacrosse player Yeardley Love, who was killed during a violent altercation.
Alcohol, with its ability to suppress inhibitions and provide a stimulant effect, can often encourage behaviors that may not otherwise happen. While this effect is often associated with crazy drinking games and wild party behavior, sometimes the result is far more sinister.