By Allison Panetta and Ada Maxwell
Staff Writer and Op/Ed Editor, respectively
Surprise! College students drink alcohol. Our weeks are hard and long, our weekends are precious to us. While, we do believe that there are many other ways to let go and have fun on the weekends, drinking is a consistent part of many students’ college experiences.
We only go to college once. After we graduate, we will have real jobs and real lives; we cannot be experimenting with alcohol then. By that time in our lives, we hope to have gotten out our weird, childish, and primitive desire to party and drink. The only way for us to get to that point though, is to experience drinking in college and learn from those experiences.
We have visited friends at schools of both comparable and larger size than ours, and trust us, the parties at these schools are much bigger and much less regulated than the parties here at Goucher. Compared to these other schools, Goucher is not so bad. We have visited schools where it is common for up to three kegs to be at any given party. Don’t worry, this community isn’t begging for a keg stand Olympics, just a little more leeway in the current regulations.
Every Goucher student travels abroad. What do most of them do while they are in a different country? drink under the age of 21, and drink much more than they would at Goucher. It would be safer to drink for the first time here in the bubble of our campus than in a new foreign country where you may not even speak the language. When students travel abroad, where drinking is much less regulated than it is at Goucher, they should know their limits and know how to drink responsibly. Goucher should put effort into creating a safe community that educates its population and teaches students how to be responsible for themselves and their friends.
While we understand that the purpose of Public Safety and the rules concerning drinking games and taking shots of alcohol are to keep us safe but, we think that less attention should be paid to specific circumstances and more attention to safe drinking habits. Shots are served at bars and drinking games are often played with water in cups. It seems silly to think about the fact that we, the students of Goucher, are paying to be told what we can and can not do with alcohol and are paying public safety officers to break up our fun.
Generally, we appreciate the concern, but we think the whole campus would benefit more from community building and alcohol education that teaches more about realistic drinking safety than about not drinking at all. Instead of talking about maximum numbers of drinks per night, we should be educated about how to know your own limit and how to tell when to stop drinking for yourself. Unlike what is stated in President Ungar’s e-mail, more than just gender determines how much alcohol one can consume in an evening. Body weight and how much a person has had to eat that day are among other factors.
College is a time in our lives when we are expected by society to drink, to learn our limits, and to get our crazy days over with before joining the real world. From our experiences, Goucher students are tame when compared to students from other colleges. We think the best way to “deal” with the alcohol situation here at Goucher is to relax a little bit, to promote community responsibility, and to educate students about how to learn and explore their limits safely. So please, let college students be college students.