Catholic University — a very fine institution that some of my more oblivious relatives suggested I attend to pursue my love of theater — has come up with an ingenious way to battle the college trend of getting super-hammered and sleeping with that guy you met at that thing or whatever: get rid of co-ed dorms! This is what college president John Garvey announced in a Wall Street Journal editorial today, but don't worry: he's just doing it because women are sluts and men are drunken animals:
I know it's countercultural. More than 90% of college housing is now co-ed. But Christopher Kaczor at Loyola Marymount points to a surprising number of studies showing that students in co-ed dorms (41.5%) report weekly binge drinking more than twice as often as students in single-sex housing (17.6%). Similarly, students in co-ed housing are more likely (55.7%) than students in single-sex dorms (36.8%) to have had a sexual partner in the last year-and more than twice as likely to have had three or more.
The point about sex is no surprise. The point about drinking is. I would have thought that young women would have a civilizing influence on young men. Yet the causal arrow seems to run the other way. Young women are trying to keep up-and young men are encouraging them (maybe because it facilitates hooking up).
Some thoughts: 1. If I lived in a dorm full of guys who had no access to women and were madly sexually frustrated, I'd pinch myself to make sure I wasn't dreaming. 2. This will probably encourage your students to drink, Mr. President. Here is the truth: in life, men and women interact with one another. Sometimes, they screw. And they will do this even if they live in neighboring dorms, as opposed to neighboring rooms. Just make sure they know how to avoid getting chlamydia, and you've done your job.