Thinking While Drinking

Photo by Shannon Deuel

It’s not a secret what a lot of college kids like to do on the weekends here in State College, or any college town for that matter. A common past time among college students is shooting back the liquid magic — alcohol. Although it can lead to some of the best nights, it can also lead to our worst nights. Valley encourages you to be safe when drinking. Here are some tips to ensure a smart, safe night out.

Don’t Drink on an Empty Stomach

Always eat a hearty meal before a night of drinking. Kelsey White, a general science major, says she has a better night when she has a big meal.

“I find I feel better and more in control when I drink on a full stomach,” says White. “The body doesn’t metabolize the alcohol, so moderation and eating beforehand is important.”

One An Hour

When the night begins and your friends are shooting it back, it can be tempting to take as many shots as possible, but stop right there. Sure, you may not realize the alcohol’s effect, but according to Bradford Health Services, it takes about 30 minutes for the effects of alcohol to kick in. So take your drinks slow and steady, and your night will end in a happier place.

Water, water, water!

Towards the end of the night, start drinking water. Drinking a water bottle before bed can nix the hangover the next day. Drinking water is an extremely simple solution to keep you hydrated and feeling good after a night out.

Buddy System

Anytime you’re venturing out on the town, don’t venture alone. Always have at least one friend with you the whole time. This will keep you and your friends safe and out of bad situations. Have an agreement with your friends that you’ll watch out for their safety if they watch out for yours.

Don’t Set It Down

Do not set your drink down at a party. It doesn’t matter where you are or whom you’re with, the smart choice is to keep your drink in your hands. If you do set it down, leave it. Get a new drink. Unfortunately, we live in a world where it’s not safe to leave your drink alone.

Never Ever Drink and Drive

Just don’t do it. Ever. You’ll put yourself and others on the road at risk. According to the Penn State Student Affairs Office of Student Conduct, “the maximum legal blood alcohol concentration when driving is 0.08 percent for persons over 21 years of age, but students may be charged with DUI below this level if signs of impairment are present. Depending on the weight of the student, a BAC of 0.08 percent may be reached with as few as 1.5 drinks.” It is important to follow this law in order to keep yourself and others safe. You can find more rules, regulations and facts about alcohol consumption at Penn State on the Penn State Student Affairs Office of Student Conduct website.

It’s important to watch out for yourself and others around you when drinking. It’s good to have fun and enjoy your time in college, but do it responsibly.

Valley does not support underage drinking. Please remember to always drink responsibly.