Objectives: We tested whether higher levels of social capital on college campuses protected against individual risks of binge drinking.
Methods: We used a nationally representative survey of 17,592 young people enrolled at 140 4-year colleges. Social capital was operationalized as individuals' average time committed to volunteering in the past month aggregated to the campus level.
Results: In multivariate analyses controlling for individual volunteering, sociodemographics, and several college characteristics, individuals from campuses with higher-than-average levels of social capital had a 26% lower individual risk for binge drinking (P < .001) than their peers at other schools.
Conclusions: Social capital may play an important role in preventing binge drinking in the college setting.