Pressure to drink?

<p>I have just read an article in the Williams Record about an awful bit of freshmen getting drunk during their first weeks at Williams. Is that true? I did plenty of research (I know, weird topic to do research on), but every comment or statistic sounds different.
Is there a group at Williams that chooses not to drink and instead goes hiking, watches movies or whatever?? The idea I got during my visit was going hiking on a Saturday and have a picnic with friends or something linke that :). Sometimes I think students just rather want to sound cool than tell the truth, but I really don't know. I actually love the location of Williams, but maybe it even encourages you to drink if there aren't any other options.
Any comments from students, parents, alumns are appreciated!!!</p>

<p>Because of the Junior Advisor system, there really is no pressure to drink. Most people are understanding if you don't choose to drink and won't treat you any differently for it -- or at least, that's been my experience here. People will obviously choose to drink, but that's up to the individual. And to address your question about groups that provide an alternative, I'm not really sure one exists but I wouldn't doubt it (and if one doesn't, you could always organize one yourself).</p>

<p>From my own experience at Williams, I enjoyed my time during First Days and continue to have fun weekends without having to drink. Williams is really what you make of it.</p>

<p>Honestly, this varies a lot depending on what people you end up with. I can't agree entirely with MD1BJR. In my entry, while there wasn't really pressure to drink per se, there definitely was pressure to continue to drink large quantities after getting started, resulting in a few, in retrospect, kind of dangerous nights. Of course, I also happened to end up in one of the must dysfunctional entries in Williams history, where one of our JAs was an alcoholic and an all around ****ty person and the other, while very nice, just kind of checked out after a few months. Such is the nature of the JA system. Some people end up in wonderful entries, have incredible times, and remain close with their entries for years to come. Others have terrible experiences and end up really resenting their JAs. Most people have relatively pleasant, average experiences. </p>

<p>Beyond that, though, once you've had some time to find your own group of friends and are no longer stuck in the awkward freshman phase, you will have no problem finding people to hang out with. Seriously. A large portion of the campus does drink, so finding people who abstain entirely might be a little tough, but very very few would judge you for choosing not to drink, so long as you return the favor, and clubs are a good way to find fun activities that don't involve alcohol. In particular, you should check out the Williams Outdoor Club (WOC), because it sounds like it's right up your alley. It's a large club, there are a ton of great people in it, and it's all about going hiking, backpacking, rock climbing, or whatever. Williams is in a beautiful location, so you'll definitely find tons of people eager to take advantage of it.</p>

<p>No pressure at all. Everyone is chill with it. Coming from a freshman this year. </p>

<p>Drinking is a big part of the culture here... we're in the middle of no where. But there is no pressure and there's a lot of other things to do. </p>

<p>Sunrise hikes and things of this sort.</p>

<p>sunrise hikes?!?!? I knew applying early was the right choice!! ...and people look at me funny when I tell them these things. Who wouldn't want to live in Williamstown...</p>

<p>Everyone is chill. Between 16 and 18% of Williams grads will end up with a significant problem with alcohol and/or alcoholism sometime after graduation. (Same is true of any other school with a 29% heavy drinking rate.)</p>

<p>wtc - sunrise hikes are a weekly event on Friday morning.</p>