No more drinking ‘games’

Exeter, according to the Guardian, has banned them following the death of a student as part of a society initiation.

A previous post referred to the problems of the Freshers’ Week drinking culture and the Government’s concerns. The initiation ritual, here involving golfers (perhaps surprisingly?), remains a deeply unpleasant extension of this.

A coroner’s inquest yesterday heard that [the student] took part in a drinking initiation for the golf society that involved downing a cocktail of shots, followed by pure spirits. The inquest heard that [he] was violently sick after the challenge, which was part of a three-hour pub crawl in his first month of university. [The student] joined the society days after he started at Exeter in October 2006. As part of the initiation, he and other new members were taken on a pub crawl on November 28, 2006, visiting nine bars. The students, some in fancy dress, downed strong drinks with extra “penalty” shots if they failed to drink them in less than 30 seconds.

…a fellow student claimed that [the student] drank four vodkas, three pints of cider, a glass of wine and numerous sambucas before downing a pint of spirits.

Just awful.

3 thoughts on “No more drinking ‘games’

  1. While everyone can understand how tragic this particular case is, it would be even more tragic if universities were to use this as an example to institute any kind of further regulation of students’ social lives.

    Societies here at Nottingham are *already* banned from coercing their members to drink, and must provide non-alcoholic beverages at any event where alcohol is available. I don’t particularly see what the point of this post is given this fact. The University must not start attempting to meddle in the private lives of its students, and I fear that hearing the Registrar concentrate on these kinds of issues indicates that he is attempting to do just so. Stop trying to make an issue where there quite honestly is not one.

  2. I really don’t think the Registrar is likely to attempt to ‘medddle in the private lives of students’. He uses his blog to comment on stories linked to HE. No more, no less. Your comments are a massive over-reaction.

  3. Maybe yes, maybe no. But in the same way that you wouldn’t want a Government minister making an issue out of every news story that comes out, you should expect the same of someone who wields such power in our (smaller) community.

    Rightly or wrongly, these comments are the views of someone who has the power to exert a considerable influence on the institution and we all have a right to voice our (dis)agreement with them. If this was a completely detached third party then there would be no problem.

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