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Substance Use and Abuse Resources

The College strives to make a breadth of resources available to students in order to allow them the space to make decisions about their own bodies and the substances they choose to use. Click on the following questions to jump directly to answers that will guide students in their decisions around alcohol and other drug use.

What Does It Mean to Be Moderate, Safe, and Responsible?
When Might Drinking Be a Concern?
Where Can I Find Drug and Alcohol Support Resources On Campus?
Where Can I Find Drug and Alcohol Support Resources Off Campus?

What Does It Mean to Be Moderate, Safe, and Responsible?

For students who choose to drink, it is important to be aware of how alcohol affects you, as everyone has a different tolerance level and responds differently to varying amounts or types of alcohol. A good general guideline to follow is to consume one drink or less per hour, which in many people maintains BAC (blood alcohol content) at around 0.05, although individuals may experience higher or lower BAC depending on their weight, eating habits, etc. At this level, you may experience a "buzz" while also avoiding many of the more negative effects of alcohol consumption. Other suggestions for drinking safely are:

  • Eat before you drink.
  • Stay hydrated (with water).
  • Set a limit for yourself ahead of time.
  • Watch out for your friends and ask them to watch out for you.
  • Have a designated driver, a place to stay, or a plan to get home (if applicable).

When Might Drinking Be a Concern?

Using substances can be social and enjoyable for some people, but it can also become problematic for others and/or have a negative impact on those around them. If you have questions or concerns about your own drinking or drug use, or someone else's, you are encouraged to seek confidential assistance from health and counseling services or seek other resources listed in this section for support. You may also take a 10-minute anonymous alcohol screening to get feedback on your drinking at If a residence advisor, house staff, or anyone else becomes concerned about your substance use, please be aware that they may initiate a conversation with you to address that concern.

The following behaviors may indicate unhealthy use of substances:

  • Frequency of use (i.e., several times a week)
  • Excessive use (with alcohol this means binge drinking, as defined by reaching a BAC of 0.08 or above. For most adults, this corresponds to consuming four or more [if you're female-bodied] and five or more [if you're male-bodied] drinks in a two-hour period. This is based on a standard drink equivalent of one 12-oz. beer, one 5-oz. glass of wine, or one 1.5-oz. shot of spirits.)
  • Negative consequences (e.g., has a negative impact on academic work, attendance, relationships, work, health, legal)
  • High-risk, destructive, or out-of-the-ordinary behavior
  • Experiences/expresses cravings or plans center on obtaining/using a substance
  • Possession of large amounts of drugs/alcohol

Where Can I Find Drug and Alcohol Support Resources On Campus?

There are a number of resources available to students, both on and off campus. Students can feel comfortable using confidential resources without concern about potential repercussions. Students may seek different types of support from the resources below. The confidential resources are designated. Furthermore, students do not need to have a problem with substances to take advantage of any of these resources. They may be helpful if you would like:

  • Information on drug and alcohol use and their effects
  • To complete an assessment
  • To discuss concerns about your own or someone else's alcohol or drug use
  • To know your substance-free housing options
  • To seek confidential counseling
  • To talk things through either with another student or with professional staff
  • To find out about groups or other resources
  • To get involved in campus efforts to promote safety and accountability in this area

On Campus

Campus safety and security and student EMTs
For a medical emergency or an immediate safety issue: x1911 (on campus phones) or 413.559.5555
For non-emergencies: 413.559.5424

Health and Counseling Services
For confidential professional counseling, assessment, and medical care:
x5458 (on campus phones) or 413.559.5458

The Wellness Center
For information about drugs and alcohol, resources, and support in recovery:
x5743 (on campus phones) or 413.559.5743

Residence Life
For substance-free housing options:
Assistant Director of Residence Life: x5543 (on campus phones) or 413.559.5743

For support, resources, and problem-solving:
Dakin area coordinator: x5770 (on campus phones) or 413.559.5770
Merrill area coordinator: x5454 (on campus phones) or 413.559.5454
Greenwich and Enfield area coordinator: x5314 (on campus phones) or 413.559.5314
Prescott area coordinator: x5085 (on campus phones) or 413.559.5085

Where Can I Find Drug and Alcohol Support Resources Off Campus?

You may contact the Wellness Center for information about local groups and community resources.

Alcoholics Anonymous (Confidential)

Alanon (Confidential)

Narcotics Anonymous (Confidential)

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Hampshire College
893 West Street
Amherst, MA 01002