We know you’ve heard enough grumbling about the AU alcohol policy to last you a lifetime. Bear with us, however, because we at the Andersonian believe that this issue warrants one last call to action—specifically, a call to the administration.
While some students might be under the impression that the current policy exists only to pacify Church of God patrons and donors, such is not the case. According to the University higher-ups, the heart behind the alcohol stringency is to lessen the chances of assault-related crime on campus—an intention that we can both respect and appreciate.
What we struggle with is the notion that, off campus, students who are legally of age are still subjected to such narrow confines.
Administration recently added a clause to the policy that enabled students the freedom to drink while in the presence of their parents, which begs the question, if we are viewed as adults in the eyes of the law, why doesn’t our university see us in the same light? Why do we still need dear old mom and dad’s permission to engage in so-called adult activities?
It is our firm belief that AU has aptly equipped its graduates for all of the challenges and realities of the “real world”—all except for one. While we are now considered responsible for managing our finances, locking down a job and networking with other professionals, we lack the ability to navigate normal social interactions in an alcohol-friendly environment.
By prohibiting students in such an ironclad manner, the temptation to drink in excess is not only heightened, but the social skills that surround drinking culture are not properly developed. We certainly do not believe that successful bar-hopping is a necessary skill for aptly navigating the adult world. Still, however, casual after-work drinks with coworkers or work-related social functions are a part of many occupations—a part that AU students will be woefully unprepared to handle with class and poise.
So what are we asking for, exactly? We absolutely support the protections allotted students under the stipulations of maintaining a dry campus. Alcohol-free dorms and apartments foster safe environments and community atmospheres for students who don’t wish to participate in such activities or who are not of the legal age.
Rather, we would like to be treated like the adults that AU faculty and staff claim that we are and expect us to act like. We would like to be considered competent enough to make mature decisions about drinking, and in doing so, learn to navigate the ensuing circumstances—an ability that we will have to master post-graduation either way.