» Patrick Pierce
As everyone should know, APSU is a dry campus; which means alcohol consumption and possession on university property is not allowed.
It is not just an APSU policy, but also applies to all other Tennessee Board of Regents (TBR) schools and most other schools in Tennessee.
The TBR system includes six different universities across Tennessee, including ETSU, MTSU, TSU, TTU, University of Memphis and APSU. All of these schools and most universities in Tennessee have similar dry campus policies.
Although UT Knoxville also has a dry campus policy, it was still ranked 20 in the nation for college party schools of 2012, according to the Princeton Review.
The dry campus policy has sparked debate over the benefits and drawbacks on college campuses. APSU students voiced their opinions about the policy with a mixed number of responses.
“By APSU being a dry campus, it enables me to focus more on my work and be able to focus in my dorm without having to worry about some wild party going on next door,” said Megan Hart, sophomore biology student.
“It distracts the whole purpose of being here and learning to better yourself for your future by allowing alcohol on campus.”
Taite Hedrick, freshman vet tech major, agreed and said students already have so much going on in their lives, the influence of alcohol would only add to the unnecessary distractions.
Many students on campus struggle keeping up with classes and studying to get the best possible grade, while juggling friends, family and work.
It can become quite stressful and often lead to depression, a common problem for many college students.
Some students drink alcohol as a way to ease the mind, despite not knowing alcohol is a depressant and actually makes the depression worse over time, according to the Radford University alcohol awareness page.
On the other hand, some students disagreed with TBR’s policy of not allowing alcohol on campus.
“I think if campus is wet, it will empower individuals to make responsible decisions. After all, we are trying to prepare ourselves for life and we don’t need ‘Big Brother’ to make those decisions for us,” said Don Tripp, senior geoscience major.
Tripp believes college education is more than going to class, taking exams and walking out with a degree. There are also social aspects to learn while spending your time in a four-year program.
“You’ll have people wander off campus and go to bars because they are going to drink anyway, then wander back onto campus and they may get picked up for public intoxication or worse, a DUI, and I believe it’s best just to leave campus wet,” Tripp said.
David Webb, senior geoscience major, said he agreed with the policy of a dry campus, but believed an exception should be made for sporting events. Webb said beer and football go hand in hand and should be allowed on campus under that exception only.
“There are a lot of people that don’t actually attend APSU for educational purposes and are more interested in just attending sporting events,” Webb said.
The debate on whether or not alcohol should be permitted on campus could go on for a while. As long as APSU remains a TBR school, alcohol will be prohibited at all student functions. However, if things were to change, my views on the matter would remain the same.
I firmly believe a university is an establishment of social and academic learning. I don’t believe it’s necessary to have a social life with alcohol and I know alcohol does not benefit a student in any way when focusing on academics.
If you want to drink alcohol, leave campus. That’s probably the best choice that could be made. Don’t distract others from getting the best education available. As far as drinking at sporting events, do it after the game in celebration of a Governors win.
There’s a place and time to do everything and college students should be responsible enough to make the smart decisions.
Drinking on campus is neither the time nor the place. Leave that for the weekends and remember to drink responsibly.