Alcohol is a common drug that can be extremely dangerous when consumed in excess. Like all drugs, alcohol is more harmful for young people than it is for adults, making it a significant issue for students in both high school and college.
Whether or not you choose to drink, it is important to learn about alcohol's effects and risks, safety strategies to reduce harm, and how to help a peer in the event of an alcohol-related medical emergency.
In cases of an on-campus emergency, call Brandeis University Public Safety at 781-736-3333. They will send an officer and Brandeis Emergency Medical Corps (BEMCo) to assist you. BEMCo is Brandeis University's emergency medical first response service. Learn more about what to do in an alcohol-related emergency.
- 38% of Brandeis undergraduate students are non-drinkers.*
- 50% of Brandeis first year students are non-drinkers.*
- 23% of Brandeis undergraduate students have never consumed alcohol.
- 79% of Brandeis undergraduate students reported having 4 drinks or fewer the last time they partied or socialized.
Brandeis First Year Students
Data from the Intro to Navigating Health and Safety online training tells us that 66% of the fall 2019 incoming class are non-drinkers.*
*The non-drinker category includes both students who have never consumed alcohol, and those who have consumed alcohol but not in the last 30 days. Because last 30-day use is predictive of a person's general behavior, we can categorize those who have not drank in the last 30 days as non-drinkers.
If you do choose to drink, the following strategies can help you reduce the likelihood of a negative or dangerous experience:
- Set a limit and keep track: Set a limit, and count your drinks throughout the night. When you hit your limit, it's time to stop!
- Pace and space your drinks: Pacing yourself helps you stay in control. Try sticking to 1 drink per hour. You can also alternate between alcoholic beverages and water.
- Eat before and while drinking: Having food in your stomach will help moderate the absorption of alcohol into your bloodstream, so that your Blood Alcohol Level will rise gradually and it will be easier to stay in control.
- Stick to wine and beer: Hard alcohol has a high percentage of alcohol by volume, and can be a lot more
dangerous than wine or beer - especially if you're doing shots.
- Avoid jungle juice: Punch, or "jungle juice", is often very strong and there’s no way to tell (or taste) how much alcohol is in your cup.
- Feeling Hungry, Angry, Lonely, or Tired? H.A.L.T. Alcohol can amplify negative feelings, and make it more difficult to regulate your emotions.
- Stay together all night: When you stay with the same group of friends throughout the night, you'll be able to take care of each other and make sure that everyone in your group gets home safely.
- Do not mix alcohol with other drugs or medications, especially other depressants. This can be very dangerous.
Alcohol poisoning can be fatal. If someone has had too much to drink or hurt themselves while drinking, call for help immediately and stay with the person until help arrives. In cases of a potential head injury, even if the person regains consciousness, he or she must be evaluated immediately. When in doubt — call for help!
- On-campus call BEMCo/Brandeis Campus Police 781-736-3333
- Off-campus call 911
Brandeis' Medical Amnesty Policy
Brandeis is a community of care that promotes students' health and safety. Our Medical Amnesty Policy exists to encourage students to call for help in the event of an alcohol or drug-related medical emergency.
If a friend or peer needs assistance, call Public Safety for help immediately at 781-736-3333 and remain with the student until help arrives. If you are off campus, call 911. If this happens, the Amnesty Policy will apply and neither you nor the person needing help will be referred to the student conduct process.
Learn more about the Medical Amnesty Policy in Student Rights and Responsibilities.
Both Massachusetts state law and Brandeis community standards of behavior require individuals to be 21 years old before they may drink or serve alcohol.
The policies are outlined in Brandeis University Rights and Responsibilities.
BTW Peer Educator: Talk to a BTW Peer Educator for more information about alcohol safety and resources.
- Brandeis Counseling Center's - Alcohol and Other Drug Services: For confidential support, explore the alcohol and other drug services provided by Brandeis Counseling Center.
- Massachusetts Drug Abuse Treatment Center listing
- Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) Young People's Meetings - Boston, MA
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The Office of Health and Wellness Promotion is located in the Shapiro Campus Center, room 247.