The rate of alcohol use and the risks that come with it is a public health concern, particularly on college campuses. A study conducted at a university in the U.S. assessed campus alcohol prevention efforts and the outcomes of providing students with alternative late-night activities.
In this study, Late Night Programs (LNP) were held on the last Friday of the month from 10 p.m.-2 a.m. 758 students who attended LNPs completed surveys at the event. University staff orchestrated the LNPs and the surveys, and conducted surveys of 207 students who did not attend the LNPs as well.
In these surveys, students were asked how often in the past 14 days they had consumed alcohol and/or participated in binge drinking. The McMos Model of Alcohol Use Acquisition and Modification was also adapted for the study and students responded to questions measuring their intentions and plans to use alcohol and the changes they are making in their alcohol use.
The results of the study showed that attendance at the 3 LNP events surveyed was associated with lower instances of alcohol use and binge drinking compared to students who did not attend. Those students also showed less alcohol acquisition behaviors. A significant finding was that many students who attended LNPs did not use alcohol at all, however a large portion of the students had been using alcohol for 6 months or more.
This research has limitations, as it is not longitudinal, yet it does provide interesting data in this area and potential for future research. A combination of the use of current data and conducting future research and could increasingly tailor LNPs to college students and effectively deter them from engaging in drinking.
Take Away: Late Night Programs are an important component in deterring college students from participating in alcohol use and/or binge drinking. In the future these programs can be targeted to a wide population of college students to discourage alternate late night events that include drinking.
Talbott, L.L., Wilkinson, L.L. (2018). Late-night alcohol-free programming and implications for alcohol prevention among college students: an application of the MCMOS model. College Student Journal. 52 (3). Pages 384-392.