The Princeton Review listed Syracuse University as the nation’s #1 party school this year. Every year these decidedly unscientific rankings cause a buzz of attention, some welcome, and some cringe-worthy. These rankings can be a momentary PR nightmare, but can also be the impetus for  taking a serious look at  college  life beyond academics.

An editorial in response to Syracuse’s ignominious recognition, notes Chancellor Syverud’s admonition to faculty and staff to take seriously activities that derail student success, with high risk alcohol and drug use being the priority concern. Even more importantly, the editorial draws the link between alcohol us and sexual victimization,

“It would be easier to laugh off the party school ranking
if not for another troubling crosscurrent on U.S. campuses –
the issue of how colleges and universities handle reports of sexual assault.
A White House task force recently said
one in five women are sexually abused while at college,
and that the abuse often occurs while women were incapacitated due to alcohol or drug use.
While excessive drinking is never an excuse
for perpetrator to commit rape
or a reason to blame a victim of rape
– no always means no —
 its role in sexual assault cannot be ignored.
I’m glad they’re taking this conversation to a higher plateau than whether the school is a party school to making the connection of a culture of alcohol excess and it link to sexual victimization. It’s an issue that’s increasingly of concern on college campuses. The summer vacation is winding to an end and many families are preparing to pack the car and take their son or daughter to college (some for the first time away from home), so this week’s blog posts will focus on issues relating to college, safety and campus sexual assault. With all the new experiences college affords, sexual assault shouldn’t be one. Before you pack up the car packing up the car, set aside time to have an open and honest talk about how to stay safe.