Perhaps one of the biggest preconceptions about going to university is that students will be drinking alcohol 24/7. However, a survey conducted by the SU, in partnership with the National Union of Students (NUS), has shown this to be false, at least for students at UEA.
A fresher might be afraid they will be judged if they do not drink, but, according to results from the survey which took place in November last year, 73 percent of UEA students reported they do not think you need to get drunk to have a good time. Additionally, just under a third of students claimed they drink less than once a week. The same amount of students said they take precautionary measures to avoid getting excessively drunk, such as drinking water, avoiding shots, limiting their alcohol intake and predrinks, etc.
The survey was sent across the country so the NUS could attempt to “build a picture of student attitudes and experiences linked to alcohol consumption, and to track long-term trend in attitudes and behaviours.”
There also seems to be a misconception that all university students enjoy being wild and as some would put it, ‘troublemakers’. However, 72 percent of UEA students claimed they do not enjoy socialising with people who are unreasonably intoxicated. Further to this, 90 percent of UEA students said they disagree with suggestion that people who don’t drink don’t know how to have fun.
34 percent of students said they have never felt expected to drink alcohol by their friends, and 71 percent of students said they think about their behaviour while drinking more than they used to.
— uea(su) (@UnionUEA) December 2, 2017
It seems the most popular place for UEA students to drink was in their own home or campus accommodation, with 48 percent of students claiming they drink at home once a week or more. The next most common place UEA students choose to drink is at the union bar and LCR.
SU Welfare, Community and Diversity officer India Edwards said: “These statistics demonstrate that a good proportion of students are aware of and responsible with their drinking habits, but we want to work to make sure that everyone knows their limits and has a great night out – whether they like to drink or not.
“The Alcohol Impact Award is not about stopping students drinking, but creating an environment that’s open to everyone, where no one feels pressured into drinking more than they’re comfortable with and everyone can have a good, safe night out. We’re working in partnership with the University towards the award and reached out to the UEA Medical Centre to gauge their concerns about student drinking.
“They told us that ‘Alcohol problems are common both among young people and in the wider community’ and that they were concerned about the impact excessive drinking sessions could have on students’ health and wellbeing.”
With nine out of ten students agreeing with the claim that the people who are not drinking are the most responsible for safe drinking at university, results from the survey suggest UEA students are safer, better drinkers than most might think.