Today is my 21st birthday. This day makes me reflect on an unfortunate college trend—binge drinking (not that I will engage in any excessive activities today!). According to CollegeDrinkingPrevention.gov, 31 percent of college students meet criteria for a diagnosis of alcohol abuse and 6 percent for a diagnosis of alcohol dependence.
Just this weekend, my roommate Meri got a call from a friend who was hosting a party. He needed Meri to bring a 17-year-old, who the friend didn’t know, to the hospital. At first, the party attendees did not want to bring him to the hospital because they did not want to get in trouble. Luckily, Meri realized that death would probably be a more significant charge than supplying alcohol to a minor. When my roommate got to the hospital, the doctors said this kid had five to fifteen minutes left to live.
CollegeDrinkingPrevention.gov said that 1,700 college students between ages 18 to 24 die each year from alcohol-related unintentional injuries, including car accidents. These sobering statistics may not be new to you, but I hope that they will remind you to continue monitoring your own and your friends’ drinking. It could be the difference between life and death.