EANABS & other non-alcohol party options for students

Kara Powell | Feb 28, 2011

When I went to college (yes, back in the day), our university required that every on campus party offer EANABS: Equally Attractive Non Alcoholic Beverages. Often that meant that the nearest water fountain had a sign over it labeled “EANABS”. That probably didn’t fit the criteria of “equally attractive”.

As we’ve studied college students in our College Transition Project/Sticky Faith work, we are continually struck by all the drinking on campuses. So I was pleased to read this Wall Street Journal article about “college parties minus the beer”.

As the teenagers we care about get older, we HAVE to talk to them about how they are going to handle the party scene, both in high school and college. We need to ask them questions like:

What parties will they go to, and not go to?

When they go to a party, what will they drink?

Will they drink anything they didn’t open themselves (i.e., opening their own can or bottle)? No matter what it is they are drinking, whether it’s water or beer, they HAVE to open it themselves. The horror stories of students being unknowingly drugged because someone slipped something into the drink they handed them abound.

How will they handle a situation if a friend who has a car seems intoxicated?

How will they handle that same situation if that same friend is supposed to drive them home?

The drinking questions are so complicated; we have to move beyond “Just Say No” in our discussions with kids.

Kara Powell

Dr. Kara Powell is the Executive Director of the Fuller Youth Institute (FYI), a faculty member at Fuller Theological Seminary, and Fuller's Chief of Leadership Formation. Named by Christianity Today as one of “50 Women You Should Know,” Kara serves as a Youth and Family Strategist for Orange, and also speaks regularly at parenting and leadership conferences. Kara is the author or coauthor of a number of books, including Growing Young, Growing With, The Sticky Faith Guide for Your Family, Sticky Faith Curriculum, Can I Ask That?, Deep Justice Journeys, Deep Justice in a Broken World, Deep Ministry in a Shallow World, and the Good Sex Youth Ministry Curriculum. Kara lives with her husband Dave and their three children, Nathan, Krista, and Jessica, in Southern California.


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