The persuasive drink culture that dominates in Irish colleges is brought to the surface this week in light of the fifth annual Arthur’s Day celebration

Drinks giants Diageo’s marketing scheme that is Arthur’s Day has been put under the microscope by the Royal College of Physicians Ireland as they host meetings this week in a bid to publicise the dark side of the Guinness event.

There is an extensive amount of health risks surrounding heavy drinking and there is no doubt that A&E wards all over the country will be overflowing on Thursday night.

A study conducted by the HSE in 2011 shows alcohol is the number one public health issue facing college campuses and 48% of students engage in binge drinking at least once a week.

Doctors have emphasised the long -term damage of extensive drinking and highlight drinking to be an epidemic in this country, being more affordable and acceptable than ever.

Excess

Arthur’s Day undoubtedly promotes excessive drinking and college students are definitely the target audience with promotional nightclub offers all over campuses this week not to mention the annual celebration falling on a week night every year appealing predominantly to a student lifestyle.

The college environment alone exacerbates the problem of binge drinking as it has become an inescapable element of college life.

Arthur’s Day is advertised almost on the same scale as St Patrick's Day when it is simply a marketing gimmick to boost drink sales.

It is probably one of the most ridiculed yet celebrated events of the year. There is a certain responsibility that must be taken on board especially among young students.

Pace yourself

It’s not all bad as the annual celebration promotes hundreds of Irish musical acts, certainly increases business for Irish bars and pubs and is, of course, a bit of fun.

The celebrations kick off a minute before 6pm and lots of acts don’t start until later in the evening meaning it is crucial to pace yourself this Arthur’s Day as the HSE says Irish college students are the highest binge drinkers in a study of 21 international student populations with females now equal to males for binge drinking.