A party school is a school typically located in a large city (or city in which a large population of the residents is college students) that tends to have high enrollment, a prominent Greek presence and a sizable number of student-led organizations, according to professor and writer Rayelle Davis. These factors combined equate to an environment welcoming of parties. From the 140+ student-run organizations to the incredibly active Greek life, Mercer seems to align with many aspects of a party school. However, many students fail to consider Mercer a party school because of its discouragement of party culture.
The term party school comes with the implication of alcohol (and sometimes drug) use, which Mercer absolutely forbids. Mercer observes a dry-campus rule, meaning that alcohol is not allowed on campus under any circumstances. The rule is very popular among private colleges and institutions located throughout the Midwest and southern United States. Rules like these can come with severe punishments for the possession of alcohol such as club suspension, fines and sometimes legal action.
“Mercer prides itself on being a dry campus. I have only been to about 5-10 parties at Mercer and that is because there aren’t many to go to,” Alexis Oladipo ‘25 says.
Additionally, Mercer places an extreme emphasis on education. In fact, nursing, engineering and biomedical sciences are three of the most popular majors at Mercer. Said majors require students to dedicate extensive amounts of time to studying and research, which allows little time for partying. Many students are tied down with academic priorities, on-campus jobs and volunteer work efforts.
“I don’t consider Mercer to be a party school because I feel like not only do the students prioritize their schoolwork and grades over everything, but Mercer also has rules set in place to prevent partying from happening on campus,” Isabella Baca ’25 said.
In the students' eyes, the party scene at Mercer tends to be underwhelming. Many students shared the consensus of Mercer parties not being worthwhile.
“Even though we have our fair share of parties, compared to other schools, Mercer’s party scene isn’t all that," Robin Serrant ‘25 said.
Although Mercer does house its fair share of parties, it is by no means a party school. Many Mercerians focus their energy on other things and the dry-campus rule makes it extremely hard to throw traditional college parties on campus. If you're looking to party for the next four years, it is safe to say that you should seek that out at another college or university.