What Faculty and Staff Can Do

Support Prevention Efforts on Campus

Students often assume heavy and frequent drinking or drug use in college is normal and acceptable. These assumptions can lead to abuse and misuse. By adopting some of the suggestions listed below, you can help create a healthier campus culture.

In Class and Around Campus

  • Share accurate norms about NU students’ drinking behavior: about 1 in 4 choose not to drink; about half report consuming at low risk levels or not at all; most drink on two or fewer occasions per week. 
  • Avoid joking about heavy drinking. This normalizes risky drinking behavior and may appear to condone it.
  • Avoid enabling the behavior (e.g., accepting excuses, pushing back deadlines and ignoring problems caused by drinking or drug use). Shielding a person from consequences indirectly allows them to continue drinking or using drugs in problematic ways.
  • Announce on- or off-campus events to promote school spirit, community engagement and alternatives to the party/bar scene.
  • Become familiar with the University’s alcohol policies.
  • In situations where you are with students in the presence of alcohol, let university policy and state law be your guide.

In the Classroom

  • Schedule classes, quizzes and deadlines on Mondays through Fridays. This discourages students from drinking heavily on weekday nights.
  • Make it clear that students’ participation in class is important, and that alcohol impairment in the classroom is unacceptable.
  • Assign group projects. Working in groups is one way for students to build relationships outside the classroom without alcohol.
  • Integrate the subject matter of alcohol and other drug abuse into your courses when possible.