The fall season is my favorite time of the year. However, recent research from Boston University shows that autumn can be a dangerous time of the year for young people in college.
Boston University reported that during the fall 2014 semester, 112 of their students were transported to local hospitals for acute intoxication. According to university police and student health, this in an uptick compared to the previous fall semester when 89 BU students were transported to the hospital for the same reasons.
Captain Robert Molloy of the university police force noted that he believed the uptick was due to the Halloween holiday falling on a Friday night in 2014. This gave students more of an excuse to party harder than they might have if the holiday fell on a weeknight. According to Captain Molloy, the amount of transports “leveled off as the semester came to a conclusion,” and that they “have been involved in bystander training, where students are urged to call the police for intoxicated students.”
Boston University's research from their Student Health Services shows that the youngest student class, or freshmen, had the largest percentage of hospitalizations at 42 percent. The senior class only made up 6 percent. Juniors were at 18 and Sophomores were responsible for 32 percent. 2 percent of those hospitalized were labeled as other. These numbers show a strong correlation between age and binge drinking.
This data also showed that the majority, 88 percent, of hospitalized students were US citizens and only 12 percent were international students. 57 percent of those treated were also female, compared to males at 43 percent. However, it should be noted that the female student population at BU is higher than males which could account for more women being treated than men.
The BAC, or blood alcohol levels were only collected for 70 of the student transports. However, these students averaged a BAC of 0.19 according to the data. These numbers are considered to be over twice the legal limit for drunk driving laws in the state of Massachusetts.
The fall season does not have to be a dangerous time for our young people. Let's educate them and help them understand that there are always options to have fun that do not involve alcohol.
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