Some people credit the Freshman 15 to stress eating at the dining hall or not having your mom watch over your shoulder to stop you from eating too much chocolate before bed. I think much of it can be credited to alcohol. Now this isn't the only reason I went through my college experience without drinking underage, but it was a factor.
I have a bubbly personality. In fact, one could classify me as an extrovert. I lost track of the number of times people have come up to me with a wide grin and asked "How drunk are you right now?" or "How much did you drink last night? You were wild!" and the number of times I look back head cocked with a quizzical expression on my face answering "Only thing I was drinking was water".
This isn't some thread that is anti-alcohol. I actually enjoy alcohol a lot. I love cocktails and whiskey is my absolute favorite beverage aside from water, but I spent 95% of my college experience away from alcohol. Why is that? I just didn't need it. The friends I hung out with didn't drink much and didn't pre-game before events. We already had our natural high energy personalities to carry us throughout the day and into the night. And even with that, some of my friends were naturally introverts as well, but still wouldn't be found frequenting a bar.
I didn't lose friends because I wasn't a heavy college drinker. In fact, you could still find me at BYOs, house parties, and various city events but never with a drink in hand until after 21 and even then very rarely. What discouraged me from drinking a lot? The price and my personality. I didn't need it to have fun and I didn't want to waste clothes and food money on a drink because they did get expensive.
So how will you navigate college if you don't like the taste of alcohol or you just don't drink at all or you don't drink frequently? It helps to have some friends who have similar convictions as you so you can find other things to do to pass the time in a fun way. Just because you don't drink doesn't mean you can't have fun or even go to the same events. But have a buddy, it makes it more fun!