BU Today

Health & Wellness

Know the consequences before you drink

Know the consequences before you drink alcohol.

Health Matters

For some students, drinking with friends is a way to relax and enjoy themselves, but for others it’s a contest with potentially deadly results, says Beth Grampetro, health and wellness educator for the Office of Residence Life.

“It’s become almost a sport,” she says, but the staggering statistics on the dangers of excessive drinking prove that it is not. According to research by the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, drinking by college students aged 18 to 24 contributes each year to approximately 1,700 deaths, 599,000 injuries, and 97,000 sexual assaults.

“There is no such thing as safe drinking, but there is safer,” says Grampetro, who is organizing events on campus to mark National Collegiate Alcohol Awareness Week October 17 to 21. “It’s important to show students that even though some people think of drinking as a rite of passage in college, it doesn’t necessarily have to be,” she says. “Or if they do choose to drink, drinking to get drunk is not the only option.”

From 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. on October 17, 19, and 21, Grampetro and members of the BU Police Department and the Office of Judicial Affairs will hand out information on drinking, host activities, and give out prizes in the George Sherman Union Link. On Monday, October 17, at 8:30 p.m., in the Warren Towers Cinema Room and on Wednesday, October 19, also at 8:30 p.m., in the Shelton Hall Music Room, she will test students’ knowledge of alcohol and drinking in her presentation “Are You an Alcohol Expert?”

Grampetro knows students are going to do what they want, so her aim is to help them make the best choices they can. “I see myself as being here to provide them with all the information they need to make an informed choice about drinking,” she says. “Whether we are Judicial Affairs or Residence Life, we want to be a united front, telling students, ‘We accept you are going to make your own choices, but before you do, here are some things you should know about what the consequences might be physiologically from drinking, what the city and state laws are, and what the University policy is.’ ”

For more information, e-mail bethg@bu.edu.