WSU cracks down on student boozing

SEATTLE -- Binge drinking and drug experimentation are problems that plague a number of college campuses nationwide, but Washington State University, long known as a "party school," is taking steps to curb such behavior by intensifying its alcohol and drug policies and expanding mandatory drug and alcohol education for incoming freshmen, the school's newspaper reported Monday.

Aiming to stop binge drinking and other high-risk behaviors among students before classes start on Aug. 19, many students will be aware of the changes made at the direction of WSU President Elson S. Floyd, WSU News said.

Last year, Floyd convened a 17-member task force comprised of faculty, staff, students and community members to make recommendation on how to reduce high-risk drinking and drug use. The task force looked at WSU and campuses nationwide.

Some of the recommended changes include increasing alcohol-free floors in dorms, parental notification the first time an underage student is found to be drinking and identifying at-risk students who would then be screened for alcohol abuse.

The school will also work with students on how to recognize the signs of alcohol poisoning.

According to WSU News, a national survey of campuses by Bowling Green State University showed that colleges that had such first-time infraction policies in place reported a decrease in alcohol-related problems.

The task force's complete report is available here.