PSU news by
Penn State's student blog



University to Take Action in Attempt to Curb Drinking Problem

It is safe to say that the 2009-2010 academic year wasn’t a great one regarding alcohol-related problems. Starting with the Princeton Review naming Penn State the #1 party school to Joe Dado’s death to about a dozen alcohol-related sexual assaults to record-setting crime on State Patty’s Day, it has become apparent that something needs to change regarding drinking on campus and downtown. If University Vice President  for Student Affairs, Damon Sims, and Borough Manager Tom Fountaine have their way, things will change. In a discussion with the Centre Daily Times, Sims and Fountaine remarked at how the drinking culture at Penn State is not unique across the country, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t a problem. Tensions between the residents of the Borough and the students at the University are at an all-time high, and the University wants to change that.

Starting in the Fall the University will increase the amount of counseling that students who end up in the emergency room for alcohol overdoses receive. The University will implement BASICS — Brief Alcohol Screening and Intervention for College Students — an alcohol intervention program given to students who are treated for overdoses. Students will be required to pay $200 for the program or face the University’s judicial system. In addition, the University will send letters to parents of incoming students urging them to discuss excessive consumption of alcohol with their children, and is considering implementing a policy that will require students previously ejected from Beaver Stadium for drunken behavior to pass a breathalyzer test before being admitted to football games. Many other Universities across the country already have this program in place.

The town is taking action too, looking to increase the number of bathrooms available at night to minimize public urination, and is in talks with state legislators to raise the fine for summary offenses over $400 for the first time in 40 years. They are also pushing the idea of block parties being held in the fall for students and residents to interact, Centre County Public Issues Forum cochairwoman Lou Ann Evans believes that “you’re less likely to throw beer bottles on Mrs. Smith’s lawn if you know Mrs. Smith.” The State College Police Department is looking at programs to curb issues in the fraternity-laden Highlands district, such programs could involve increased patrols by officers as well as a potential student auxiliary program being implemented, similar to the one found on campus.

It’s clear that the Borough and the University are serious about cutting back on the drinking problems that plagued last year. Some of these policies are certain to be unpopular with the student population, but perhaps that’s exactly what is needed to stop these issues and cool the tension between Town and Gown.

[Photo Credit: Annemarie Mountz for Penn State Live]

About the Author

Chase Tralka

Chase Tralka is a Senior majoring in Information Sciences and Technology with a minor in Security and Risk Analysis. He is from Northern New Jersey and is involved in far too many organizations to list here. He enjoys photography, cycling, and listening to obscure free jazz music.


More by Chase

Three Words: For the Glory

When I sat back one night in January thinking about my time at Penn State, I tried to come up with a single word that would adequately describe my experiences here. As I attempted to determine what that magic word might be, my mind began to grasp the absurdity of that challenge. How could I possibly distill four years of my life, countless friendships, and untold numbers of memories, down to a single word? An impossible task to be sure. So instead, I took the easier road and went with three words: For the Glory.

Distinguished Speakers Chosen to Speak at Commencement Ceremonies

PSU Contacts Minnesota-Duluth’s Hockey Coach


Shea Moyer Lifts Penn State Women’s Soccer Past West Virginia 1-0

Sophomore midfielder Shea Moyer scored the game-winning goal in the 80th minute of a rainy season opener at Jeffrey Field.

Penn State Women’s Soccer Poised For Strong 2018 Season

Incoming Penn State Track & Field Athlete Kristian Marche Shot To Death In Philadelphia

Former Women’s Gymnastics Coach Files Lawsuit Against Penn State Over Handling Of Abuse Allegations

Men’s Soccer Trio, Reading United Win PDL Eastern Conference Title, Fall Short Of National Championship

Student Life

Student Body President Cody Heaton Welcomes Class of 2022 At Convocation

UPUA President Cody Heaton welcomed the incoming Class of 2022 Saturday evening with an inspiring speech.

Start The Semester Off Right With These Welcome Week Activities

Nike Releases New Penn State Sneakers

Plans Submitted For New KFC In State College

Developers have submitted preliminary land development plans to build a new KFC restaurant at 1780 S. Atherton St. in State College.

Join Onward State: Fall 2018 Application

Onward State is hiring for the fall semester and we’d love to have you join us.

Penn State Officially Welcomes Class Of 2022 At Convocation

The Class of 2022 joined the Penn State family Saturday evening at Convocation.

Be the first to know

  • Top posts and the best Penn State stories

Thank you for subscribing.

Something went wrong.

Assessing Penn State’s Front Seven Following Tuesday’s Medical Retirements

Penn State’s defensive line rotation will be shaken up following Ryan Buchholz’s medical retirement from football, while the coaching staff is letting the linebackers duel it out during camp.

Send this to a friend