University life is full of great experiences.

But for some reason, a lot of people have the perception that alcohol has to be a part of them all.

Truth is, some people choose to drink and many choose not to drink at all. Whatever you choose, this site is all about keeping it social.

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Do you know what "a drink" means?

Select a beverage and fill the cup to find out.
Hint: the amount of liquid in “a drink” depends on the amount of “pure” alcohol in the beer, wine or spirit.

  • Beer
  • Wine
  • Cooler
  • Spirit

“A drink” of 5% beer
is 341 ml (12 oz)
Vol 0 oz
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It’s all about having a good time without having things go sideways. Here’s how you can get the most out of your night:

Know what’s in your drink.

It’s no fun if you lose track. If you’re eyeballing it or someone else is mixing your drinks, you might not know how much alcohol is in there.

Have a plan.

Knowing what time to meet your friends at the bar is important, but so is planning a safe way home – whether it’s grabbing a cab, walking in a group, rolling with a designated driver or crashing on a friend’s couch. It’s also smart to grab a bite before you go out and have a non-alcoholic drink in between every alcoholic one (energy drinks don’t count, they’re a recipe for nasty).

Look out for your friends.

From time to time some of your friends might cross the line. If you know the signs, you can help. Speaking of friends, you should always have a few around when you’re having a couple. Drinking alone can be a warning sign of high-risk behaviour.

Stash your cash.

“I spent how much last night?” Many of us have heard it. Set a limit and avoid buying rounds when you’re out with a group. It gets expensive fast.

Remind yourself why you’re at university.

It’s probably not to wake up with splitting headaches, wondering what went on last night. It took hard work to get there and you’re working toward your future. Remembering that can help keep things in perspective.

Pace yourself.

Park the chugging. It’s not a race and there is no trophy. Same goes for the drinking games, which make it way too easy to end up under the table before the night gets started. Canada’s Low Risk Drinking Guidelines suggest two drinks every three hours, which is a good way to keep pace with all the night’s fun.

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Set limits.

Too much of anything is never a good idea – especially when it comes to alcohol. So set a limit and stick to it. If you’re wondering about setting the bar, Canada’s Low Risk Drinking Guidelines suggest no more than four drinks at any one time for males and three for females.

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No Pressure.

You are your own person, so do your own thing. You shouldn’t feel pressured to drink. Same thing goes for pressuring others. Insert “If all your friends jumped off a cliff, would you?” quote from your mother here.

It’s the other side of the line – where embarrassing things and worse than embarrassing things could happen. Know the signs:

Slurred speech, blurred vision, blacking out & hangovers.

They’re all dead giveaways that you (or your friends) might have gone over the social line. You should be able to remember all of your night without having to nurse a splitting headache. Way better than having a friend fill you in on how bad your “drunkspeak” or “beer goggles” were.

Mood swings.

Alcohol affects brain chemistry and your brain controls mood. It’s not cool when you go from friendly to nasty or happy to a blubbering mess. Bottom line, drinking shouldn’t change your personality.

Unnecessary risks.

When you get that invincible feeling like you can tightrope walk between telephone poles, take on some dude who is twice your size, or even drive after a few drinks, it’s the alcohol talking. What it won’t tell you is that you’re flirting with serious injury, suspension or even charges and a criminal record.

Ignoring the signs.

If you think a friend might be in trouble, doing nothing is dangerous. The first thing to do is call for help. Here are some things you can do to until help arrives:

  • Try to keep the person awake
  • Give them some water if they can drink it
  • If they’ve passed out, lie them on their side (never on their back)
  • Monitor their breathing
  • Keep them warm


  • Leave someone unattended to sleep it off
  • Put them under a cold shower
  • Let them consume more alcohol

Drinking when you shouldn’t.

Sometimes the only right amount is no amount:

  • Driving a vehicle or operating machinery
  • Taking medication or other drugs that interact with alcohol
  • Performing any kind of dangerous physical activity
  • Living with mental or physical health problems
  • When responsible for the safety of others
  • Making important decisions
  • Living with alcohol dependence
  • Pregnant or planning to become pregnant
  • To cope with stress or anxiety
  • For the sole purpose of getting drunk

Academic troubles.

Whether it’s missing classes because of a hangover or bombing a test because studying took a back seat to partying, sliding grades can lead to failing a class, academic probation or flunking out entirely. If you pay more attention to your Blood Alcohol Content than your GPA, you’re probably not keeping it social.

Alcohol poisoning.

One of the most important things we can do is look out for each other. Watch for signs of confusion, loss of coordination, vomiting, seizures, irregular breathing, blue-tinged skin and unconsciousness. If you spot them, get help. Find a bouncer; call an RA, campus security or 911. Don’t hesitate. You may only get one chance.