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Grad Students Also Are Affected by Ban

[The Tech received a copy of the following open letter to graduate students.]

By now, you should be aware of the campus-wide reassessment of MIT's alcohol policy. Though the review was motivated by the recent tragic incident involving an undergraduate, undergraduates are not the only ones affected. President Charles M. Vest has even suspended alcohol at faculty and corporation events which he hosts. The possibility of a campus-wide ban on alcohol would affect all of us.

It is therefore essential that we all help out. We, the older and ostensibly wiser students on campus, should offer our insight. You all were undergraduates at one time I ask you to let me know what policies have - or have not - been effective at other campuses across the nation in dealing with alcohol problems. As the Graduate Student Council president, I represent you to the administration at meetings with deans and faculty members. Help me and the GSC recommend successful policies to the administration.

Many people have commented that policy will not be enough. MIT can ban alcohol, and Cambridge can crack down on underage drinkers, but there will probably always be some students who drink irresponsibly. I ask you to help me determine the practices at your schools that helped you recognize your responsibilities to ensure the safety of friends and housemates. Were there specific things that helped you realize the dangers of binge drinking? Were there procedures in place to prevent excessive drinking or take care of students who have had too much?

In the spirit of the voluntary one-month moratorium on alcohol, the GSC has changed this Friday's social to an ice cream social. In addition, the two campus pubs, the Muddy Charles and the Thirsty Ear, are collaborating to produce a brochure discussing responsible drinking and the dangers of alcohol.

Further, the GSC is forming an an ad hoc committee on its own alcohol policy. The committee will address issues like Friday socials, the Formal Ball, and the Muddy Charles, as well as Funding Board allocations for parties with alcohol. If you are interested in serving on this committee or have comments to submit to the committee, please contact me at

Geoffrey J. Coram G

President, Graduate Student Council