Cheers, beers and school years

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It starts with a Friday night. A group of friends gather around, the excitement growing for the big party they’re attending down the street. The stress of schoolwork and everyday life pushed aside, they’re ready for the time of their lives. Partying can allow for great memories to be made, but there are often consequences to be suffered.

According to a state-wide student survey, the Missouri Assessment of College Behavior, 71 percent of Maryville University students choose not to drink alcohol because they have too many personal responsibilities. But 82 percent of students admitted to drinking just to have fun with friends. Knowing how the use of alcohol while attending parties plays a role in one’s life is crucial to maintaining a healthy balance.

Director of Health and Wellness at Maryville, Pam Culliton believes in the importance of becoming knowledgeable about how the use of alcohol can affect a person. She recommends participating in an easy, personalized and anonymous learning tool, e-CHUG, to provide feedback on individual drinking patterns, risk patterns and one’s aspirations and goals. Completing e-CHUG allows participants to enter into a raffle for $25 to be deposited into their OneCard account.

Culliton said, “Typically, freshman drink the most. Then, sophomores a little less, juniors a little less and seniors a little less. Partly because the fun has worn off and because they have too much stuff to do. They’re the ones paying for it now.”

While some may find the environment of a party unappealing, to others, it’s a rush. To Freshman Brandon Novak, a typical party starts with “pre-gaming with the boys,” and ends with a 3 a.m. Taco Bell run. Partying allows him to meet new people, both girls and boys.

Novak has met some of the most relevant people in his life today from going to parties back in high school. What started as a group of three guys hitting up the biggest parties on the weekends, expanded quickly into a larger group of 20, in turn claiming the imaginary-frat name, “Shell Kappa Alpha.”

“I’m the funny guy at a party; I say weird and outlandish things that make people piss their pants laughing,” Novak said, “I will do anything you ask me to unless it’s life-threatening. If it can potentially cause an injury, I might do it, but it depends on the injury.”

Novak believes partying allows one to forget about everyday worries of school and the future.  Novak said, “Partying lets me live in the here and now and have a good time with my life.” If it weren’t for attending parties, Novak believes he wouldn’t have become the person he is today.

While Novak loves partying, he recognizes the consequences that often come about. When asked about the negatives, he said, “Hangovers, one night stands you’ll potentially regret, and blacking out, to name a few.

Cierra Frields, freshman, avoids the party scene, straying from the consequences that come with attending. Frields said, “I’d rather spend my time watching Netflix, catching up on homework, hanging out with my boyfriend, or even at my job, Kaldi’s. I know I could potentially be kicked out of the Physical Therapy program, and that makes it not worth it. Partying just isn’t my scene.”

Whether you lean towards the party scene or away from it, parties happen all around. Although parties can be fun, it’s important to recognize the potential risks they entail.

Want to participate in the anonymous learning tool, e-CHUG, for the chance to win $25 deposited into your OneCard account? Visit their website to enter the raffle.


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