As the semester winds down, follow 5 key tips to celebrate smartly

Monday, April 29, 2024 As the semester winds down, follow 5 key tips to celebrate smartly

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by Jon Gayer, assistant director for alcohol and drug education

The semester is winding down. Summer is on the horizon. Warmer weather, outdoor concerts, and freedom are calling.

In the coming weeks, Cinco de Mayo, Kentucky Derby viewing parties, and graduation bashes are all awesome opportunities to make memories with your friends.

We want you to enjoy the epic end-of-semester experiences – so remember to prioritize safety and well-being along the way. By celebrating responsibly, you can actually maximize the fun during this time. Here are the top tips to keep in mind, no matter how you choose to unwind.

Plan ahead.

If you choose to drink or use drugs, it's important to know your limits and stick to a plan. This includes budgeting for drinks or cannabis products, entertainment, having a designated driver, or arranging safe rides home. Avoid impulsive decisions that could lead to risky situations.

Prioritize Your Health.

Alternate non-alcoholic drinks throughout the night. Eat before or during celebrations to avoid drinking on an empty stomach. Get enough sleep so you can make clear decisions.

Responsible gambling.

While it is the season for popular horse races, NHL playoffs, and NBA playoffs, remember to only bet what you can afford to lose. Set limits and stick to them. Avoid online gambling sites that make it easy to overspend. Consider using cash at casinos to avoid reckless betting and leave if you are ahead.

Look out for each other.

Buddy up! Go out with friends, look after each other, and have a plan for getting home safely together. Don't allow friends who are under the influence to drive.

Focus on fun - not just the finish line.

The end of the semester is a time to celebrate accomplishments and connections made. Make memories that are positive and healthy. Prioritize your well-being so you can return to campus refreshed.


Make plans to get a free Alcohol and Other Drugs presentation/program for your RSO, chapter, or group. It's not too late for this spring semester or plan ahead for the next fall. Connect with Jon Gayer, assistant director for alcohol and drug education, at and 402-472-2583.

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