- Manage Risk
- Host a Party Without Getting Busted
- Know Your Solo
- BAC Chart Calculator
- Alcohol Appreciation
The best way to manage risk associated with alcohol use is to abstain from drinking. If you decide not to drink, you’ll be in the company of nearly 12,500 MSU students making the same choice. If you decide to drink, know that you will be held accountable to campus rules and laws regarding alcohol.
There are 4 primary factors that will influence how your night turns out:
1. Amount of Consumption
Limiting the number of drinks you have is the best way to avoid a bad night.
- Set your limit before you start drinking and stick to it.
- Always pour your own drinks so you are aware of the contents.
- Stick with one kind of alcohol.
- Keep track of how many drinks you're having.
- Give a friend permission to cut you off when you've had enough.
2. Pace of Consumption
The quicker a drink goes down, the quicker your BAC rises.
- Eat before or while drinking.
- Pace yourself to one or fewer drinks per hour.
- Drink water, juice, or soda between drinks of alchol.
- Avoid "pre-gaming", drinking games, and taking shots.
3. Personal Characteristics
Remember that body weight, size, genetics, and mentality all play a role in how alcohol affects you.
- Even pound for pound, drink for drink, a female's BAC will rise faster than a male's BAC.
- The higher a person's body fat percentage, the quicker BAC will rise.
- Smaller bodies have less ability to dilute alcohol, which equates to a higher BAC.
- Alcohol is absorbed more quickly on an empty stomach.
- Dehydration reduces blood volume and the amount of water in the muscle, so alcohol will be less diluted and BAC rises.
- Tired and stressed people feel the effects of alcohol faster.
Drinking games, tailgates, parties and celebrations can all affect how you drink and what happens.
- Choose a sober designated driver before you go out.
- Know when to leave the party. If the party goes too long, gets too loud, or becomes too big, the police (or in the dorms, RAs) are likely to make an appearance. Your best bet is to leave before they arrive.
- Stay with the same group of friends the whole night.
97% of students use three or more protective strategies (i.e. pacing drinks, staying with friends) to keep themselves safe when drinking.*
Help Your Friends Party Smart:
Partying is first and foremost about being with friends. Keep that in mind and watch out for each other!
- Never leave a friend alone at a party or bar. If you start out the night together, end the night together.
- If you see your friend drinking too much, too fast, help them slow down. Bring them a non-alcoholic beverage (water), get them something to eat, ask them to help you slow down, or get them to do something that takes the focus off of alcohol (i.e. dance, go for a walk). Your friend will surely appreciate your efforts later, even if they don’t right then.
- Trust your gut! If at any time you feel that a friend may be in medical trouble, they probably are.
- If you are unable to wake your friend, if they have pale or clammy skin, or they are breathing too slowly, it is a medical emergency - get help immediately
- Call 911
- Place your friend on their side
- Stay with them until help arrives.
Medical Amnesty will protect you and your friends
from legal trouble.
Be a Good Neighbor:
- As a courtesy, let your neighbors know you are having a party.
- Remember, noise travels far. Avoid pointing speakers outside or playing music too loudly inside. Large crowds generate a lot of noise as well.
- Pick up any trash on your lawn immediately following the party. You’ll make your neighbors happy and avoid a party litter fine.
- If a neighbor approaches you with concerns about your party, listen to them calmly and accommodate their wishes to the best of your ability.
Be a Good Host:
- Understand the party host is responsible and liable for anything that happens as a result of your party. It is in your best interest to keep your guests safe and out of trouble. Serve food throughout the night, make sure all alcohol is labeled (no jungle juice), and have non-alcoholic drinks on hand and accessible to everyone.
- Don’t let anyone under the age of 21 drink at your party. It places everyone at your party, especially the host, at risk for legal trouble.
- Help your guests get home safely. Don’t let anyone drive home without a designated driver.
- Identify one or two people to act as ‘Party Monitors’. Their job is to stay sober, help guests get home safely (be designated driver, call for taxis), interact calmly with the police and neighbors, and monitor noise levels.
- Know all of the people attending the party. This is the best way to avoid thefts, fights, and other similar negative situations. Try introducing yourself to everyone at your party as a way to remove any sense of anonymity that a party-goer might have.
Know the Law:
It is against the law to:
- Sell alcoholic beverages or charge money for cups, have a cover charge, a music fee, etc. where alcohol is being served, without a liquor license issued by the State of Michigan.
- Provide or sell alcohol to people under 21.
- Have open alcohol in any place open to the public in the City of East Lansing, including the sidewalk or the street.
- Have a party that gets too loud, meaning it can be heard from the street or adjacent property. It is important to monitor noise. Police are under no obligation to give a warning and fines can range from $250 to $1,000. If there are other contributing factors at your party (outdoor drinking games, common source of alcohol, overcrowding, etc.) the severity of the violation and fines will go up.
The KNOW YOUR SOLO activity provides conversation and education about alcohol concentration, standard drink size, and the ways in which speed of consumption, gender, and weight impact blood alcohol content. To learn how to host your own KNOW YOUR SOLO program, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Ever had an interest in how beer and wine is made? Michigan State University Food Science & Human Nutrition offer Brewing and Distilled Beverage Courses.click here.