Students Expect to Drink Term Paper

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Students expect to drink when they get to college. It is one of the main socializing factors that college students look forward to, whether they are aged 21 or younger, they expect that drinking will be a part of their college life. They look for ward to drinking at football and other sports games, drinking with their fraternity brothers, having sex while drinking, going on Spring Break and drinking themselves until they don't know what they are doing and bingeing on beer with fellow students.

Parents sometimes tell tales of their drinking exploits which they remember fondly from their college days. This romanticizes behavior that, even then was not really "normal." Entertaining students with stories of drinking back in "the good old days" appears to give parental approval to dangerous alcohol consumption.

Although there is not an epidemic of drinking today, and not all students drink heavily, alcohol is actually a large factor in negative experiences during the college years (ages 18-24). Riots, deaths related to drinking, violence, injury, unplanned sex, sexual assault, sexually transmitted disease and interrupted studies are all negative results of drinking by college students. Violating a city, state or federal law can result in a permanent criminal record and, since background checks are increasing, employment can be denied as a result of alcohol-related convictions in college.

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Some of the legal complications of drinking under the age of 21 are: possessing alcohol, beer or spiritous liquor, having an open container of alcohol in a public place or car and possessing a fake ID (which is a 4th degree felony). It is also illegal in many states for a person under to operate a motor vehicle with a blood content of.02 or higher.

Term Paper on Students Expect to Drink When They Get Assignment

In a 1999 research study, Ralph Hingson and his associates examined the magnitude of alcohol-related deaths among U.S. college students, aged 18-24. They estimated the number of deaths by examining traffic and unintentional injury deaths in 1998, reported by the Highway Traffic Safety Administration and the Centers for Disease Control (CDC). They estimated that over 1,400 students enrolled in 2- and 4-year colleges died in 1998 from alcohol-related injury deaths and other health problems, including motor vehicle crashes. In 1999, the next year, over 2 million of the 8 million college students in the United States drove under the influence of alcohol and "over 3 million rode with a drinking driver. Over 500,000 full-time 4-year college students were unintentionally injured under the influence of alcohol and over 600,000 were hit or assaulted by another student who had been drinking." (Hingson 2)

Hingson and his associates agreed that there is an urgent need for expanding alcohol treatment and prevention programs in colleges to reduce harm caused to U.S. college students and other young adults by alcohol-related crimes and accidents.

Crime and violence on college campuses have a strong connection to alcohol. Alcohol-related crime has a 95% connection to violent crime and 90% of reported campus rapes involve alcohol use by the victom or perpetrator, while 80% of campus vandalism occurs because of drinking.

Even before they leave home, students should understand that no one condones breaking the law. Parents of college students should openly and clearly express disapproval of underage drinking and dangerous alcohol consumption. And, if they drink, parents should present a positive role model in the responsible use of alcohol.

College students die every year from alcohol poisoning. Parents and schools discourage dangerous drinking when students participate in drinking games, fraternity hazing, or in other ways. Parents should ask their sons and daughters to show courage and intervene when they see someone putting their life at risk through participation in dangerous drinking, because of the prevalence of death in such "sports." Nothing is more tragic than an unconscious student being left to die while others either fail to recognize that the student is in jeopardy or fail to call for help due to fear of getting the student in trouble.

Students who drink can affect the behavior of those who do not, ranging from interrupted study time to unwanted sexual advances or sexual assault. Students may confront these problems directly by discussing them with the offender. If that fails, they should notify some authority.

Things are different today than they were in college students' parents generation. Today 52% of college drinkers drink with the sole intent to get intoxicated. "21 for 21" is the coming-of-age ritual, though consuming 21 shots can be lethal, killing the drinker with alcohol poisoning. (A Message 2)

Parents have a big influence on whether a teen or college student will drink. In a study by Frances Sessa, she found that commuting first year male college students' frequency of use of alcohol and marijuana were influenced by the amount of parental monitoring, or perceived parental monitoring by commuting students, but parental influence had no effect on residential students. (Sessa 1)

Unfortunately, drinking often occurs earlier than college and teens are very likely to have already drunk alcohol by the time they have reached college than to try it the first time in college. Teens who smoke cigarettes are more likely to drink alcohol. Teens who smoke and drink are more likely to use marijuana. And those who use all three are more likely to use other illicit drugs. Although the drugs change over time, alcohol is still the most widely used substance among teens in America, followed by tobacco and marijuana.

When students overestimate the use of alcohol by their peers in their college expectations, they tend to use more alcohol themselves. However, when students find out the truth about how much alcohol is actually used by college students, through baseline data retrieved from school surveys, perceptions change.

A recent survey found that University of Oregon students thought 96% of their peers drink alcohol at least once a week, when the actual rate was 52%. Students are very much influenced by their peers and try to drink up to what they perceive to be the norm. Confronting misperceptions about alcohol use is vital. Results in this type of program indicate a significant decrease in misperceptions about college drinking, along with positive plans for behavior (Ott 45).

Students who mistakenly think that college is largely a time to have fun have low expectations regarding academic achievement. National studies conducted have shown that partying may contribute as much to a student's decline in grades as the difficulty of his or her academic work. If students know their parents expect good grades from them, they have less time to get in trouble with alcohol since they are likely to be more devoted to their studies.

College traditions often include drinking, which has developed into a kind of culture, with beliefs and customs entrenched in every level of college students' environments. Customs handed down through ages of former college drinkers reinforce students' expectation that alcohol is a necessary ingredient for social success. These beliefs and the expectations they engender exert a powerful influence over students' behavior concerning drinking alcohol.

Customs that promote college drinking are also implanted at many levels of students' surroundings at college. The walls of college sports arenas have advertisements from alcohol sponsors. Alumni continue the alcohol tradition, perhaps less a little less enthusiastically than during their own college years, at sports events and alumni social events. Communities permit commercial stores and restaurants near campus to serve or sell alcohol, and these depend on the college clientele for their remaining in business.

Students derive their expectations of alcohol from their college surroundings and from each other, as they face insecurity and the task of establishing themselves as a success in a new social environment. Environmental and peer influences unite to produce a culture of drinking. This culture actively promotes drinking, or passively promotes it, through tolerance, or even tacit approval, of… [END OF PREVIEW] . . . READ MORE

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How to Cite "Students Expect to Drink" Term Paper in a Bibliography:

APA Style

Students Expect to Drink.  (2007, January 8).  Retrieved April 7, 2020, from

MLA Format

"Students Expect to Drink."  8 January 2007.  Web.  7 April 2020. <>.

Chicago Style

"Students Expect to Drink."  January 8, 2007.  Accessed April 7, 2020.