Amherst Wire

To drink or not to drink?

That is the question.

Julia Economou, Contributor

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Students gather at the University of Massachusetts UPub, where the beer is cold and the music is loud. The UPub remains the only bar on campus where students (who are of legal age) can sit down and drink, and on a typical afternoon, every table is taken.

But after a look around, it is clear that students not only have drinks set down in front of them, but also their laptops.

Vimeo / UMass Journalism – via Iframely

In a study done in 2012 at the University of Illinois at Chicago, psychologists found that drinking alcohol actually helps the brain’s creative thinking process.

The experiment compared the differences in creative ability between someone with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of .075 and that of a sober person.

Results concluded that when it came to the creative thinking process, intoxicated men did better than sober men. However, alcohol neither increases nor decreases work ethic in terms of memorization skills, whereas a sober person’s memory gradually increases.

Chris McGoldrick, a graduate student at UMass says, “I feel more relaxed and less stressed when I have a drink or two, which makes it easier for me to get stuff done.” 

But not all students feel this way about drinking “on the job.” Erika Moburg, an undergraduate UMass student, sticks to the old fashioned way of staying focused.

“I would rather reward myself with a drink than have one during the day. I’m more comfortable with drinking a coffee, than indulging in alcohol,” says Moburg.

Email Julia Economou at [email protected], or follow her on Twitter @Julia_Economou. 

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To drink or not to drink?