How common is underage drinking in college?
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How common is underage drinking in college?

You know well that underage drinking is illegal, and your 18-year-old child knows this as well. However, they’re heading off to college, and you can’t help but think of your own time in college. There was certainly a lot of underage drinking and partying that seemingly happened every weekend. 

You’re not sure how worried you should be, but you’re interested in how common these infractions are. Is it just a general perception that underage drinking happens all the time, perhaps enforced by movies and TV shows, or is this a serious issue that your child may encounter? How common is it?

Most students drink

The truth is that most students drink, and data backs it up. In 2019, the National Survey on Drug Use and Health found that 52.5% of students who qualified as full-time members of the university would drink. Granted, this did consider those from 18 to 22, so some were drinking legally, but it’s still a telling stat. 

Plus, this survey only asked them if they had consumed alcohol in the month before the survey. It stands to reason that some students had not consumed alcohol in the past month but had used it at some point in college. This would suggest that the total number of students who drink, which is already the majority, is even greater than the survey showed. 

Plus, roughly one out of three students admitted to binge drinking, which is quickly consuming alcohol with the express goal of becoming intoxicated. 

Your child’s defense options

If your child does get involved in drug and alcohol use at college and ends up facing charges, you need to know what defense options they have.