Do you know:

  • what counts as a drink?
  • the signs that alcohol is causing harm?
  • how many drinks are in a common container?
  • why “being able to hold your liquor” is a concern?
  • how much UIS adults drink – and where you fit?

To find out, visit the Rethinking Drinking webpage, National Institutes of Health

The Domino Strategy

You count everything – calories, carbs, cell phone minutes.

By simply keeping track of how many drinks you’ve had and the alcohol content of those drinks,

you can dramatically decrease your risk for alcohol related problems.

0-1-2 Guidelines on How to Drink Responsibly

0 – No alcohol for people who are:

  • • Under 21.
  • • Operating any type of vehicle or machinery.
  • • Pregnant, trying to become pregnant or breastfeeding.
  • • Recovering alcoholics or chemically dependent.
  • • Using certain medications.

1 – No more than one standard drink* per day for women.

2 – No more than two standard drinks per day for men.

* 1 standard drink = 12 ounces of beer, 5 ounces of wine or 1.5 ounces of 80–proof distilled spirits.

The THINK campaign began in 2014 after a University of Illinois-Springfield alumnus, Ralph Blackman, gave a donation to the UIS Counseling Center to start an alcohol responsibility, social marketing campaign.  Mr. Blackman is the CEO of the Foundation for Advancing Alcohol Responsibility.  With Mr. Blackman’s generous donation, the Counseling Center and the Young Professional Marketers, organized a core group of students who were willing to take the campaign to the next level.  The goal of the group is to educate the UIS students about responsible drinking.  The initial focus will be directed to the students in the residence halls, and then all students of the University of Illinois-Springfield.  Awareness will be developed through programming, education and events.  Eventually, a goal of the THINK campaign is to create a peer educator program.

Alcohol Refusal Skills

Tips on how to be better equipped to refuse alcohol:

  • Choose positive friends who don’t need alcohol to have fun.
  • Be assertive in turning down the opportunity to drink.
  • Make eye contact when turning down an opportunity to drink.
a group of young people in a circle "putting their hands in"

Statements to use in refusing alcohol:

  • “I have more positive things in to do in my life.”
  • “I don’t need to drink; being sober is a great high.”
  • “I would rather hang out at the rec center or student center.”
  • Say, “No thanks, I don’t need it.”
  • “Sorry, my friends and I have chosen not to drink.”
  • “Sorry, I don’t drink.”
  • “I am on my way to the gym.”
  • “I am saving my money for a new car.”
  • “I am allergic to alcohol.”
  • “No thank you, I am watching my calorie intake.”
  • “Sorry, I am on my way to practice.”
  • “Sorry, I have a test to study for.”
  • “Sorry, I am not 21.”
  • “Sorry, alcohol does not mix with my medication.”

Top Ten Ways To Turn Down A Drink!

  • “No, thank you!” (No explanation necessary; your response can be short, sweet and direct).
  • “I’ve had enough.” (Again, short, to the point and completely acceptable).
  • “Thanks, but I’ve got a ton of work to do later.”
  • “I’d rather get a soda, thanks.”
  • “I’m allergic to alcohol.”
  • “I’m driving tonight.”
  • “I have a game/practice tomorrow.”
  • “I’m O.K. for now.” (BYOC: Bring your own cup and keep it filled with something other than alcohol).
  • “No thanks, I’m taking medication that I cannot drink with.”
  • “I’m dieting; alcohol’s got way too many calories.”

Try Saying No With A Different Twist:

With an invitation:
Leave the door open for the future, “Not now”.

With a friend:
Plan with a friend beforehand what each of you will or will not do. Stay with the plan and stick together. The decision not to drink then becomes a kind of team decision.

With an exit:
Plan to physically relocate if you feel you are in an uncomfortable situation.

Have a quick one liner ready:
“No thanks, I’m still tired from being up late last night”.
“You know that your problem is? You think too much about others. It’s time you start making yourself and your need’s a top priority”.

More Resources

  • Building upon a longstanding history of corporate social responsibility and recognizing the power of collective action, the distilled spirits industry created The Foundation for Advancing Alcohol Responsibility in 1991 as an independent, national, not-for-profit organization.Their mission is to fight drunk driving and underage drinking and to promote responsible decision making regarding beverage alcohol. Their funding companies do not want their products to be misused or consumed illegally.
  • Check out “The Drink Wheel.” Intoximaters Inc. has a “Drink Wheel” form that you can fill out that when completed will instantly compute your estimated blood/breath alcohol concentration (“BAC”) or blood alcohol content. This simulates the breath alcohol testing done by an Intoximeter Alco-Sensor IV that is used in Law Enforcement and Workplace Testing.
  • Alcohol and You:  An Interactive Body.  Virtually every organ system is affected by alcohol. Drinking in moderation may cause problems to one’s body, and drinking heavily over the years can cause irreversible damage. However, most diseases caused by excessive drinking can be prevented.
  • Alcohol abuse kills 75,000 Americans every year.  For the latest alcohol research, studies and statistical data, check out the Alcohol Awareness Council at
  • The Century Council is a leader in the fight against drunk driving and underage drinking and promotes responsible decision making regarding beverage alcohol.  They believe that collective action brings about lasting change. They work with all members of the community – law enforcement, public officials, educators, parents, and students – in the fight against drunk driving and underage drinking.   Helpful resources for parents include:  “Parents, You’re Not Done Yet.”
  • The National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism includes suggestions on how to cut down on drinking.
  • Treatment 4 Addiction is the largest and most frequently updated treatment center directory. The national directory of treatment centers includes the SAMSHA (Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration) database, as well as many private treatment centers, therapists and addiction professionals. It also provides information on types of treatment, addictions and mental health disorders.
  • Alcohol Addiction Center  Get the facts about Alcohol Use Disorder.
  • The National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA) developed the CollegeAIM guide and website to help college students choose wisely.  The site has links to an alcohol calorie calculatoralcohol cost calculator and BAC Calculator.