Heavy alcohol consumption a problem at most universities, says NS report

August 30, 2012

"Harmful drinking by university students is a problem for most, if not every, university," states a report by the Nova Scotia Department of Health and Wellness in response to an Acadia University student's alcohol-related death last year. "The university environment has a significant role in shaping student behaviours, and as such, the campus context needs to be altered so that it does not support a heavy drinking culture." One estimate observes that nearly 90% of Canadian university students drink alcohol, while 32% reported drinking heavily at least once a month; the percentage was higher in Nova Scotia (51%). "The current evidence supports universities taking a comprehensive approach that includes collaborating with the local community to raise awareness and implement local solutions; implementing interventions that will alter the drinking environment on campus; and implementing interventions that will reduce student demand for alcohol. Population level policies are also needed to reduce overall prevalence of drinking and to de-normalize overconsumption and this will require working with the provincial and federal governments." Acadia announced yesterday new alcohol policies to curb binge-drinking. University Affairs | Acadia News Release | CBC | Report