College Binge Drinking

Nationally, a very large majority, about 80%, of college students use alcohol. The research on college student drinking is interesting in that it shows that more than 70% of college students report that when they drink, they drink four or fewer drinks on any one occasion of drinking. Approximately two out five college students are binge drinkers, according to the most recent Harvard School of Public Health College Alcohol Study. 51% of male students drink five or more drinks in a row. 40% of female students drink four or more drinks in a row. In the United States, one “standard” drink contains roughly 14 grams of pure alcohol, which is found in: 12 ounces of regular beer, which is usually about 5% alcohol. 5 ounces of wine, which is typically about 12% alcohol. 1.5 ounces of distilled spirits, which is about 40% alcohol. So when you drink a long island ice tea, if you do the math thats over one drink of alcohol. A long island ice tea is at least 90% alcohol.


This caught us by surprise. The distinguished Solo cup, a veteran of countless parties has a trick up its sleeve: built in measurement marks.

Each year, drinking affects college students, as well as college communities, and families. The consequences of drinking include:

  • Death: 1,825 college students between the ages of 18 and 24 die each year from alcohol-related unintentional injuries.
  • Assault: More than 690,000 students between the ages of 18 and 24 are assaulted by another student who has been drinking.
  • Sexual Abuse: More than 97,000 students between the ages of 18 and 24 are victims of alcohol-related sexual assault or date rape.
  • Injury: 599,000 students between the ages of 18 and 24 receive unintentional injuries while under the influence of alcohol.
  • Academic Problems: About 25 percent of college students report academic consequences of their drinking including missing class, falling behind, doing poorly on exams or papers, and receiving lower grades overall.
  • Health Problems/Suicide Attempts: More than 150,000 students develop an alcohol-related health problem and between 1.2 and 1.5 percent of students indicate that they tried to commit suicide within the past year due to drinking or drug use.

Virtually all college students experience the effects of college drinking – whether they drink or not.

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