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Study finds off-campus party hosts drink more than party-goers

Whether it’s beer, wine or liquor, a new study says that off-campus-party hosts tend to drink more alcoholic drinks than their guests.

The study also found that on any given weekend, at least 10 percent of students could be hosting a party.

Natalie Milliron, a first-year in business marketing, said this research is definitely in line with her personal experiences.

“Whenever, I go to (off-campus) parties, I would say the people who host them are going pretty crazy,” Milliron said.

Random samples of students were given online surveys on high- and low-risk weekends between 2005-2007, said Cynthia Buettner, assistant professor in the College of Education and Human Ecology and lead author of the study.

Buettner said the research focused on party hosts because it was an audience that had not been closely studied. And the results are not too surprising, Buettner said.

Off-campus party hosts consumed an average of nine drinks while those on campus consumed an average of 4.5 drinks.

Research found that people hosting on-campus parties drink less than those attending.

The average number of drinks consumed by attendees at on- and off-campus parties was about the same: 7.5 drinks.

Students hosting parties on campus might worry about university-sanctioned consequences while off-campus hosts are less likely to do so, Buettner said.

“We know from research that one of the things that makes a difference in people’s drinking is whether they think that the policies and laws around drinking will be enforced and how likely they are to be caught,” she said.

While he agrees with the findings, Tommy Glace, a first-year in radiation therapy, said it all depends on the situation.

“If somebody has all these people in their house they might (not drink) to watch what people are doing,” Glace said. “But it depends on the person.”

Milliron said she agrees there might be something to be said for staying sober if you’re hosting a party.

“I’ve actually had a bunch of friends who have had stuff stolen because they just don’t know what’s going on,” Milliron said.

On the other hand, safety could also be a factor that would encourage off-campus party hosts to drink more heavily.

“When you go to parties, you can’t drink to the point where you can pass out, you have to walk home,” Milliron said. “But (off-campus party hosts) can just pass out and go upstairs or go to bed.”

Max Layman, a third-year in mechanical engineering, hosts large parties once or twice a quarter with his roommates and said some party hosts drink to be social.

“If you’re having a party, you want to enjoy it,” Layman said.

Layman said money might also be an issue for off-campus hosts. If you have a party and buy alcohol, you’re probably going to drink some of it because you paid for it, Layman said.

Buettner said she hopes students who do host are aware of the risks.

“(As a party host), you’re less likely to be able to control the party at your place because you’ve had too much to drink,” Buettner said. “All of the risks that go along with drinking too much are just increased if you’re a party host off campus.”

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