Columbia College recognizes the negative health effects associated with the use, possession, and distribution of controlled and/or illicit substances, and their detrimental impact on the quality of the educational environment. Therefore, all members of the College community share in the responsibility of protecting the campus environment by exemplifying high standards of professional and personal conduct.
This policy applies to all members of the College community.
Policy on Alcohol and Controlled and/or Illicit Substances
Columbia College prohibits the manufacture, possession, use, distribution, and sale of alcohol and controlled and/or illicit substances by Columbia College students and employees, regardless of age, on College-owned property and at College sponsored or supervised events or activities.
- Public intoxication on campus property is expressly prohibited. Those conditions considered to indicate intoxication include but are not limited to affected manner or disposition, speech, muscular movements, general appearance or behavior as apparent to the observer.
- Containers that contain alcohol as well as empty alcohol containers are prohibited on campus and in the residence halls. Possession of empty alcohol containers will be regarded as a violation of this policy.
- Campus displays or advertisements that support or promote alcohol or drug use, possession, manufacture or distribution are prohibited.
- Behavior resulting from intoxication or the illegal use of controlled or illicit drugs will incur disciplinary action.
- Possession of drug paraphernalia and misuse of prescription drugs will be regarded as violations of this policy.
- Alcohol and other controlled and/or illicit substances possessed or consumed in violation of this policy are subject to confiscation.
The President retains the authority to make exceptions to this policy with regard to alcohol, including granting permission to serve alcoholic beverages at College functions where meals are served. Requests for exceptions to the policy must be submitted to the President in writing prior to the event and will be considered on an individual basis. Notification of the President’s decision will be made in writing to the person(s) making the request.
It is the responsibility of students, faculty, and staff to know and uphold the Columbia College Alcohol and Other Drugs Policy. In accordance, students and employees must be held accountable for their personal behavior. Excessive use, manufacture, possession or distribution of alcohol and/or controlled or illicit substances and the associated behavioral problems will be the basis for disciplinary action.
Columbia College has made the decision to notify parents/guardians of students, under the age of twenty-one (21), who have been found responsible for violating the Alcohol and Other Drugs Policy by the campus judicial system following a final determination.
Representatives of the College will cooperate with outside authorities in their efforts to enforce existing laws regarding alcohol and/or controlled or illicit substances.
Standards of Conduct
Violations of Columbia College rules and regulations pertaining to alcohol and/or controlled or illicit substances can result in disciplinary action up to and including dismissal for students and termination for employees. Additionally, in conjunction with or in lieu of the imposition of any disciplinary sanctions, students and employees may also be referred to appropriate local, state or federal law enforcement agencies for arrest and prosecution and/or be required to complete an appropriate treatment or rehabilitation program.
In accordance with the mandates of the Drug Free Workplace Act of 1988, and as a condition of employment at Columbia College, all employees (including student employees) must notify their supervisor of any criminal drug statute condition for a violation occurring in the workplace no later than five (5) days after such a conviction. Employees undergoing treatment for alcohol or drug abuse must meet all standards of conduct and job performance.
Any Columbia College student or employee found possessing, manufacturing or distributing controlled and/or illicit substances or unlawfully possessing or attempting to possess alcohol or driving a motor vehicle while under the influence is violating local, state, and federal laws. It is unlawful under state law to purchase or otherwise provide alcohol to a minor.
Federal law prohibits, among other things, the manufacturing, distributing, selling, and possession of controlled substances as outlined in 21 United States Code, Sections 801 through 971. Depending on the amount, first offense maximum penalties for trafficking marijuana ranged from up to five (5) years’ imprisonment and a fine of up to $250,000 to imprisonment for life and a fine of $4 million. Depending on the amount, first offense maximum penalties for trafficking other controlled substances (e.g., methamphetamine, heroin, cocaine, cocaine base, PCP, LSD, fentanyl and fentanyl analogue) range from five (5) years to life imprisonment and fines range from $2 million to $4 million. First offense penalties and sanctions for the illegal possession of small amounts of controlled substances, including marijuana, ranged from up to one (1) year in prison or a fine of at least $1,000. Penalties are more severe for subsequent offenses.
Federal Aid Eligibility and Drug Conviction(s)
Federal aid eligibility may be suspended if the offense occurred while the student was receiving federal student aid (grants, loans, or work-study). A student may regain eligibility early by completing an approved drug rehabilitation program and by passing two (2) unannounced drug tests administered by the approved drug rehabilitation program.
If convicted of a drug-related offense after the student submitted their FAFSA form, the student may lose eligibility for federal student aid, and be liable for returning any financial aid received during the period of ineligibility.
Good Samaritan Policy
The College is committed to the safety and well-being of all members of the College community. This policy is intended to encourage students to seek assistance from appropriate sources in the event of a health, medical or safety emergency by alleviating the threat of disciplinary action by the College if a student’s conduct would otherwise violate the College’s Alcohol and Other Drugs Policy. Specifically, in situations involving a threat or danger to the health or safety of any individual, students are encouraged and expected to seek appropriate medical attention for themselves and others as soon as possible as long as it is safe to do so.
Alcohol and other drugs are associated with many health risks. The use and abuse of alcohol and other drugs may have negative effects on one’s school or work performance and personal relationships. Some common health risks are addiction; damage to liver, heart, and to a developing fetus; accidents as a result of impaired judgment; and unwanted sexual activity that could result in sexual assault or sexually transmitted infections.
For more information about the health risks associated with particular types of drugs and alcohol, please visit the National Institute on Drug Abuse's page,Commonly Abused Drugs Charts.