Tech hosts National Collegiate Alcohol Awareness week
By Tana Thompson, Staff Writer
October 19, 2021
National Collegiate Alcohol Awareness Week began Monday, Oct. 18 and ends Friday, Oct. 22. Colleges across the country are aiming to help students become more aware of alcohol abuse, drunk driving and how to make healthier decisions.
Mia Chu, a Risk Intervention and Safety Education alcohol and drugs committee chair, said this week’s mission is to raise awareness on alcohol and alcoholism, encourage safe drinking practices and to remind students of the different options they have. If students are of legal age and choose to drink, events this week will show them how to do that safely.
“Alcohol is very normalized and it is everywhere,” Chu said. “It’s easier to access and I think a lot of students may have symptoms of alcoholism and they might not even know it. I would say it’s prevalent because it’s just such a common drug and a lot of students, being away from home for the first time, have access to it when they didn’t really before.”
Loni Crosby, an administrator and adviser for student activities, said students have an idea of college and believe they are supposed to drink and party while they are here.
A one-time event where a student thinks it is okay to drink could lead to a lifetime of addiction, Crosby said.
“I don’t think that college students plan to drink but they see it as expected in college,” Crosby said. “It can lead to a situation where they have an addiction that lasts for years due to that personality or genetic code where they have addictions. College is not a place to just come party and drink, it’s a place to learn and have good experiences.”
Adam Orlov, a fourth-year agricultural economics student from Lufkin, said students can be affected mentally and physically by alcohol. It can make a student depressed or bring them anxiety, and it can cause damage to a person’s liver, cardiovascular system, brain or cause cancer.
Trevor Wilkinson, a second-year honors sciences and humanities and English student from Clyde, said it is inevitable that college students drink.
“I think college is a very stressful and chaotic time and I think some students drink to try and make their problems go away, others simply do it to have fun, and some do it to fit in,” Wilkinson said.
Tech offers resources on campus for students who are addicted to alcohol, like the Student Health Center, where students can go to Student Counseling and visit the Center for Addiction and Recovery, Crosby said.
The Student Activities Board also directs events for alcohol awareness and promotes the resources Tech offers, Crosby said.
“Tech offers an abundance of resources for students who are addicted to alcohol,” Wilkinson said. “RISE has so many programs to get students back on track as well as counseling.”
National Collegiate Alcohol Awareness Week sheds light on the bad things that alcohol can cause and helps students understand that alcohol can be dangerous for their bodies, future goals and aspirations, Wilkinson said.
The sponsors of National Collegiate Alcohol Awareness Week will be hosting events everyday. More information on events can be found on the Student Activities Board website.