Throughout middle school and high school, we’re told all about peer pressure and the many ways we can resist it. We hear slogans like “Just say NO!” and “Say nope to dope!” but are these realistic solutions to real-life situations? By the time most students graduate high school, they have likely been in a situation involving peer pressure. Students feel the need to conform to the ideas of their friends, especially if low self-esteem issues are involved. In college, the effects of peer pressure can be amplified many times more than in high school or middle school because there are far more opportunities for independence. Before college, our lives as students are largely controlled by adults and parents. It becomes more difficult to decide what choices to make though once you’re on your own.
Though alcohol is permitted on college campuses, there are rules that are meant to prevent alcohol consumption from getting too far out of control. Quite contrary to what students are told in middle and high school health classes, the pressure to drink is not very prevalent. That is not say that it doesn’t exist though. Sometimes, resisting peer pressure is as simple as saying “no”, but with fraternities, sororities, and parties, saying no can become much more difficult. Middle and high school education systems likely mean well by scaring students about the dangers of giving into peer pressure, but they contradict themselves by making it seem terribly simple for everyone to resist. So how can college students survive on a campus rampant with so many different pressures to be something they aren’t? Many colleges, including Moore, have created programs specifically designed to combat the problem of peer pressure before it even arises. They invite parents and students alike to take part so that there is a partnership and an understanding between students and their parents, as well as an understanding between students and the university. Peer pressure doesn’t have to take over your life; there are people who are willing to help and many ways that you can resist it.