For many of you new students at UNC-Chapel Hill, college will be a time for experimentation with drugs and alcohol. New freedom provides the opportunity to get drunk at a fraternity party or smoke weed at your buddy’s place off campus without fear of repercussions. Unfortunately, about 400 of you are drug addicts or alcoholics and you probably don’t know it. UNC knows it and they want to help you out.
Dean Blackburn is the director of Student Wellness and Associate Dean of Students. He deals with Tar Heels who seek help in stopping or controlling their alcohol or drug use.
“About 8 to 10 percent of the student population is at risk for ‘substance use disorder’ or dependency,” he told me. “Of those who would fit the criteria, less than half seek help for it. Perhaps because they don’t realize help is possible or that the University understands addiction and supports getting help and recovery without penalty.”
With 18,523 undergraduate students, we can assume that there are about 1,500-1,800 students who fit some criteria for a substance use disorder. Nearly half of them never seek appropriate treatment.
According to the , a third of college students and young adults reported binge drinking — five or more drinks in a row — in the past two weeks. In 2016, about 5 percent of college students reported smoking weed daily. About 10 percent reported misusing Adderall in the past year.