UNCA students equipped with tips on how to party responsibly have a unique opportunity to party positively on and off campus, according to campus officials.
“I think this campus is unique in that there are more opportunities for students to get
involved in organizations where negative types of partying, such as binge drinking, are not the
focus of why students get together, and I think students are very responsible in that way,” said Eric Boyce, assistant vice chancellor for public safety.
Partying carries a negative connotation when binge drinking or an Animal House type atmosphere occurs. Conversely, a positive connotation applies to a party where students get together and behave responsibly, according to Boyce.
Binge drinking occurs when four or more alcoholic drinks are consumed within two
hours, according to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism.
Boyce said responsible drinking includes limiting alcohol consumption, knowing what is in your drink and avoiding drinking and driving. All of these precautions keep people safer.
“You have to do it responsibly, and by responsibly I mean it takes your body one hour to
process a glass of wine, a shot of spirituous liquor or 12 ounces of beer,” Boyce said.
Rosemary Farley, a freshman psychology student, said she first attended a party where people were drinking alcohol and smoking cigarettes in high school.
“It was really exciting and I was really nervous. I remember lying about my previous
experiences because I was nervous,” Farley said.
Her initial idea of a party changed when she got to college. Farley said she now interprets
a party as something that incorporates more than just getting together and drinking or smoking.
A get-together with your closest girlfriends or even getting brunch can be considered a party, she said.
“I just really think partying is defined by the people that go. You can go to a party
with all girls. There doesn’t even necessarily have to be alcohol there,” Farley said.
Partying bears a negative impact when you feel the need to change in order to fit in with the attendees, Farley said.
“There can be social dynamics that make people think they need to do things they don’t
normally do or need to be OK with things they aren’t normally OK with. For example, drugs
they aren’t comfortable with or sexual contact that they aren’t comfortable with,” Farley said.
Kenzi Martin, the community director of South Ridge and West Ridge residence halls, said she recommends having a plan before partying to ensure safety at any type of get-together.
“Always have a plan. Especially if you’re a young lady, even if you’re a young man as
well, because people will take advantage of anybody,” Martin said.
A responsible plan includes preparing a ride home after the party, knowing the
locations of exits, fully charging your phone, using the buddy system and carefully watching
your drink to prevent potential tampering by other guests, Martin said.
“If you leave your drink anywhere and it’s out of your sight more than a second get a new
drink. Don’t continue drinking that drink because that is how you get drugged. Keep your drinks
with you at all times. Take it to the bathroom with you. You aren’t gonna die if you do that,”
When paired with a plan, partying can benefit a person’s social life and self esteem, she
“I think going to parties is great, it builds your confidence. It helps you meet new people
you may have not met,” Martin said.