Policies & Regulations

Alcohol and Other Drugs Policy
Number: 14.0060P
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New Policy


Major Revision of Existing Policy

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Minor/Technical Revision of Existing Policy

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Reaffirmation of Existing Policy

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Repealed Policy

Effective Date:
Revised Date: 1/1/2009
Responsible Division/Department:
Department of Health Promotion


The purpose of this policy is to educate the University community regarding the harmful effects associated with the use of alcohol, other drugs and other addictive substances while identifying education and prevention programs offered to students, faculty and staff regarding these matters. The Policy also identifies resources available to those in our community that require assistance in addressing substance abuse and associated behaviors. Thus, it is necessary to promulgate this Alcohol and Other Drug Policy to assist members of the University community in: 

        A. Community members understanding of: 
            1. The harmful and addictive potential associated with the use of alcohol and other drugs 
            2. The consequences of the use, possession, manufacture or sale of illicit drugs 
            3. The consequences of the use, possession, manufacture or sale of drug paraphernalia 
            4. The consequences of the possession of prescription drugs unless dispensed pursuant to Chapter 893 of the Florida Statute 
            5. The consequences of the alteration or sale of prescription drugs 
            6. The unlawful use and possession of alcohol; and 

        B. Community members role as resources to others regarding: 
            1. Preventing alcohol and other drug abuse; and 
            2. Creating and monitoring a safe and drug free environment. 
            3. Addressing the misuse of alcohol and other drugs among members of the University community. 
            4. Provision of information, educational programs and referrals regarding responsible use of alcohol and other legal substances.


For the purposes of this policy, the following definitions (as per Florida Statutes) shall apply: 
        A. Alcohol (or alcoholic beverage): means distilled spirits and any beverage containing 0.5 percent or more alcohol by volume. 
        B. Illicit Drug: means a controlled substance or “designer drug” under provisions of Chapter 893, Florida Statutes.


The University of North Florida expressly prohibits the following by students and employees in or on property owned and controlled by the University of North Florida or off campus when a student or employee is acting as a representative of the University: 

        A. Unlawful manufacture, alteration, distribution, dispensing, possession, or use of any illicit drug 
        B. Unlawful possession or use of a prescription drug regulated under the provisions of Chapter 893, Florida Statutes (controlled substances and “designer drugs”) unless dispensed and used pursuant to prescription or otherwise authorized by law. Manufacture, alteration, delivery, distribution, dispensing, and/or sale of such substances are prohibited unless authorized by law. 
        C. Unlawful purchase, possession, distribution and/or use of alcohol 

The use of alcoholic beverages and/or use, possession, manufacture, sale, or attempted sale of any illicit drug or prescribed drug by members of the University community is at all times subject to federal, state, and county laws, ordinances, and statutes governing these substances. 

Anyone found guilty of violating this policy is subject to specific sanctions and penalties as described herein.


The success of this policy also depends on continued evaluation to measure its effectiveness and to modify the policy where necessary to meet the objectives of this policy 

        A. Guidelines for Alcohol Consumption 
        B. Alcohol and Other Drug Education and Prevention Services 
        C. Evaluation 
        D. Rehabilitation 
        E. Parental Notification 
        F. Sanctions 

    A. Guidelines for Alcohol Consumption 

    1. Overview of Guidelines 

The sale, service, possession, and consumption of alcoholic beverages shall comply with state and federal laws, city and county ordinances, and the licensing agreement with on-campus distributors, which allows for the sale and service of alcoholic beverages. 

Due to the concern for the health and safety of individuals at UNF, the University has formulated the following general guidelines governing the sale and consumption of alcohol on campus: 

        a. Alcoholic beverages may be served at approved events as an amenity to a well-planned and structured program, not as the indispensable and essential program element. 

        b. The sale or service of alcoholic beverages to persons younger than 21 years of age and the possession or consumption of alcoholic beverages by persons younger than 21 years of age is prohibited. 

        c. Possession or consumption of alcoholic beverages is prohibited, except in designated areas or as approved with special events. 

        d. The sale of alcoholic beverages on the University campus may be permitted only in approved areas and only by licensed distributors. 

        e. The sponsor of the event is responsible for providing food and non-alcoholic beverages at any event where alcohol is served. 

        f. Individuals are responsible for their actions regardless of the mental or physical effects of alcohol. 

Specific rules covering the sale, distribution, consumption and location of alcoholic beverages on campus are discussed below. At all times these rules must comply with federal, state and county laws and ordinances. 

    2. Areas 

        a. The following are areas where alcoholic beverages may be served and/or consumed: 

            1. Private rooms of students or individuals over 21 years of age residing in the Osprey Village area of University housing 
            2. University gallery 
            3. Public reception areas, for example, Library Atrium, Robinson Theatre Atrium, President’s Conference Room. 
            4. Classrooms where no academic instruction is scheduled. 
            5. Robinson Student Life Center (except Theatre) 
            6. The Arena 
            7. The Osprey Nest 
            8. Fine Arts Center 
            9. Hayt Golf Learning Center 
            10. Hodges Stadium 
            11. University Center 
            12. Alumni Hall 
            13. UNF Hall 
            14. Approved serving locations within the Student Union 
            15. The University reserves the right to serve alcohol at any location on campus 

        b. Alcoholic beverages may not be served or consumed in the following areas, including but not limited to: 

            1. University Nature Trails and Lakes 
            2. Robinson Theater (except Atrium) 
            3. Thomas G. Carpenter Library (except Atrium) 
            4. Campus parking lots and roads 
            5. All areas of Housing except Osprey Village 

    3. Sale of Alcoholic Beverages 

Only those groups holding the appropriate state license for the sale of alcoholic beverages may sell alcoholic beverages. Individuals and University groups that sponsor events where alcoholic beverages are served are prohibited from charging for the beverages either directly or indirectly without the proper state license. The University controller must approve the obtaining of a license in advance. 

    4. Approval 

    The sponsor of any event where alcoholic beverages will be served or consumed must have the event registered and approved in advance and will be held responsible for the event. 

        a. The approval authorities are as follows: 
            1. Faculty Association and faculty-sponsored events are approved by the Vice President for Academic Affairs. 
            2. University Support Personnel Association, and Administrative and Professional Association events are approved by the Vice President for Administration and Finance. 
            3. Alumni Association and Foundation Board events are approved by the Vice President for Institutional Advancement. 
            4. Osprey Club and Student Government and other student- sponsored events or student organization events are approved by the Vice President for Student and International Affairs.     
            5. Off-campus groups using University facilities are approved by the UNF sponsor and the appropriate Vice President. 
            6. Other groups or individuals are approved by the appropriate Vice President. 
            7. The President or designee also has the right to approve any area. 

    5. Responsibility 

If alcoholic beverages are served for any University function, party, or event, the group or individual responsible for the event must adhere to the following: 

        a. Precautionary measures such as checking I.D.s must be made to ensure that alcoholic beverages are not served to persons who are under 21 years of age or to persons who appear intoxicated. 
        b. A person or persons must be designated as the server(s) and the alcoholic beverage(s) must be placed in such a manner and location that access to it is restricted except through the designated server

        (s). Server(s) must receive training to be made aware of their responsibilities and the legal consequences for violating these responsibilities and specific server actions to limit the use of alcohol. 
        c. The only alcoholic beverages that may be possessed or consumed at campus events are those served at the event. All such alcoholic beverages must be consumed within the facility or space designated

        for the event. 
        d. Nonalcoholic beverages must be available. 
        e. Food must be served concurrently with the serving of alcoholic beverages. Adequate portions will be considered as criteria for event approval. 
        f. An effort should be made to ensure that the amount of alcohol approved for any event must be proportionate to the expected attendance and duration of that event. 
        g. Advertising (including flyers, ads, notices, posters, banners, etc.) must note the availability of nonalcoholic beverages and food as prominently as the alcohol being served. 
        h. Promotional material for any University function, party or event (including those to be held off campus) shall not make reference to the amount of alcoholic beverage available at the event nor feature the

        alcoholic beverage as the predominant aspect of the event. 
        i. Appropriate measures for adequate cleanup of the facility used are required. 
        j. The faculty/staff adviser (or his/her designee) of a student organization must be present throughout the duration of the activity to ensure that the above guidelines are observed and must be made aware of

        his/her responsibilities and the legal consequences of violating these responsibilities. 

    6. Violation of Rules 

Violation of these rules will result in disciplinary sanctions. The University sanctions imposed range from written warnings to expulsion from the University (including expulsion from enrollment for students and termination of employment for faculty, administrators, and staff, if appropriate). Disciplinary action against an employee or student by the University does not preclude the possibility of criminal charges against that individual. 

    7. Reference 

If any member of the University community has questions regarding this policy or its application, these questions may be addressed to the Office of the Vice President for Student and International Affairs. 

    B. Alcohol and Other Drug Education and Prevention Services 

As part of the educational process, the University, via the Department of Health Promotion, will provide on a regular basis, a wide range of activities for the University community to increase their understanding of the harmful effects and potential addiction caused by inappropriate use of alcohol and other drugs. These activities are centered on primary prevention (i.e., education), secondary prevention (i.e., intervention) and tertiary prevention (i.e., support and coping). 

    Specific primary prevention activities will include: 

    - Education efforts by the Department of Health Promotion 
    - Participation in national, state, and regional alcohol and other drug prevention events 
    - Regular dissemination of alcohol and other drug educational literature to the University community 
    - Presentations on alcohol and other drugs information to residential students, academic classes, faculty staff and other campus groups 
    - The maintenance of a computerized drug and alcohol information database 

    Specific secondary prevention activities (i.e., intervention) will include: 

    - Intervention counseling and education 
    - Confidential referrals to treatment and counseling centers     

    Specific tertiary prevention activities (i.e., support and coping) will include: 

    - Sponsorship of Alcoholics Anonymous, Al-Anon meetings and/or other substance-related support groups 

    Specific efforts in the areas of evaluation and research shall focus on each tier of prevention (i.e., primary, secondary, tertiary) and shall be conducted regularly. 

The Department of Health Promotion promotes prevention and education to better enable students, faculty and staff to engage in informed, responsible and healthy decisions regarding the role of alcohol and other drugs in their lives. To assist with this prevention and educational mission, specific information about the most commonly used drugs is presented in Table 1. 

    C. Evaluation 

The purpose of the evaluation component is to ensure the successful achievement of the policy/program objectives. The evaluation component will consist of process and outcome evaluations. 

    1. Process Evaluation

The purpose of the Process Evaluation is to monitor the progress of the policy and program implementation to indicate whether or not revisions are necessary in either the policy or program in order to meet stated objectives.


Process evaluation data will include:

(1) the number and type of prevention activities provided by various campus departments/units to the University community

(2) the number and type of disciplinary sanctions levied on students and campus employees and

(3) the number of students and campus employees provided with a written description of the alcohol and other drug policy and prevention programs.


These data will be documented in the appropriate campus department and units assigned with the responsibility for implementing the respective alcohol and drug policy and prevention program components. 

    2. Outcome Evaluation 

The purpose of the Outcome Evaluation is to determine the effectiveness of the campus alcohol and other drug policy and prevention program components, and to determine alcohol and other drug-related trends to provide suggestions for enhancing the efficacy of policy and programming.


Outcome evaluation data will include:

(1) annual survey of alcohol and other drug-related habits, beliefs, consequences, and perceptions of alcohol and illicit drug use,

(2) quarterly campus police reports of alcohol and other drug-related infractions on campus and

(3) follow-up measures on sanctions levied against students. 

A final aspect of the evaluation process will include the regular convening of the University of North Florida Campus Community Coalition on Substance Abuse Prevention (UNF, COSAP). The purpose of the UNF-COSAP is to review alcohol and other drug prevention programs and make recommendations to the Vice President for Student and International Affairs on prevention programming. The UNF-COSAP therefore serves as a feedback mechanism ensuring the continual assessment and, when necessary, revision and improvement of the campus alcohol and other drug policy and prevention programs. 

    D. Rehabilitation 

This policy is intended to address the use of harmful and addictive substances; however, it is not intended that a community member's abuse of substances will be dealt with in a purely punitive manner. Thus, this policy encourages and allows these individuals to obtain help from a number of internal (i.e., on-campus) and external (i.e., off-campus) sources. Every effort will be made to protect the individual's confidentiality, according to applicable laws, and to foster successful pursuit of academic and/or professional goals in accordance with the University's mission 

        1. Students 

The Counseling Center, Department of Health Promotion and Student Health Services are the primary facilities available to students who have alcohol or other drug abuse or dependency problems. These students are identified through: 
            a. self-referrals 
            b. faculty and staff referrals 
            c. student conduct system referrals 
            d. Drug testing (done by Athletics for student athletes) 

Once identification is made, an assessment of the student’s condition is made through the appropriate campus resource (i.e., Counseling Center, The Department of Health Promotion, or Student Health Services) to determine the level of intervention and treatment necessary to ameliorate the situation. If this assessment reveals that the scope of the problem is beyond the capability of these centers, the student will be referred to the appropriate community agency. 

        2. Faculty and Staff 

Since the Counseling Center, Department of Health Promotion, and Student Health Services are primarily for students, employees are treated in these facilities only on an emergency basis. Employees with a chemical dependency may be identified through: 
            a. self-referrals 
            b. supervisors 
            c. involvement in the criminal justice system 

They will be required to either take advantage of the Employee Assistance Program (EAP), made available through the Office of Human Resources, or to seek help from community agencies. A comprehensive list of these agencies, including names and telephone numbers, is available through the Department of Health Promotion. The employee may choose to use one of these agencies rather than the EAP.

Rehabilitation is the preferred goal for employees or students who exhibit chemical dependency problems, and every effort will be made to assist with rehabilitation. However, if any subsequent work performance or disruptive behavior adversely affects the overall well being of the University community, then sanctions may be applied as explained under section IV. F. Sanctions for Violation of Policy . 

    E. Parental Notification Policy 

This policy is for alcohol offenses committed by students under the age of 21. This portion of the Policy identifies specific violations of the Policy where a student's parent, guardian, or emergency contact as listed with the University will be notified of the Policy violation. Any notifications made pursuant to this Policy will be made in compliance with Federal and State student privacy laws. 

Parents will be notified if the student has been found responsible under the Student Conduct Code for: 

    1. A violation involving illegal drugs 
    2. A serious alcohol violation. Serious alcohol violations include, but are not limited to, an incident involving alcohol which is determined to be life threatening to the student, threatening to the community,

    involving aggressive and/or belligerent behavior, operating a vehicle under the influence, or involving other significant violations of the Student Code of Conduct or the law (i.e., felony violations of the law involving alcohol). 
    3. A second alcohol violation 

    F. Sanctions for Violation of Policy

The unlawful manufacture, distribution, dispensing, possession or use of an illicit drug, or prescription drug regulated under the provisions of Chapter 893, Florida Statues, or the unlawful use or possession of alcohol is wrong, harmful, and prohibited in and on UNF owned and controlled property or as part of any of its activities. No employee or student is to report to work, class or any University function while under the influence of alcohol or other drugs. Violation of this policy will subject the individual not only to University sanctions but also to potential criminal prosecution by the appropriate authorities.


Additionally, a violation of this policy may result in a referral for evaluation and possible treatment for a substance related disorder, or referral for prosecution consistent with local, state, and federal law. 

Disciplinary action against an employee or student by the University does not preclude the possibility of criminal charges against that individual. The filing of criminal charges similarly does not preclude action by the University. 

    1. Penalties 

The penalties imposed for violating this policy range from written warnings with probationary status to expulsion from enrollment and termination of employment. The choice of sanction will depend on the individual circumstances of the case, including any extenuating circumstances. Specific penalties for faculty, administration, staff, and students can be found within the areas responsible for each constituency: 

            a. For faculty: The Office of Academic Affairs 
            b. For administrators and staff: The Office of Human Resources 
            c. For students: The Office of the Vice President for Student and International Affairs / Student Conduct Office 

    2. Suspension Pending Final Disposition 

The University reserves the right to suspend a faculty member, administrator, staff or student between the time of the initial charges and the impending hearing. This suspension action will be subject to the applicable personnel rules and will be invoked only if in the opinion of campus administrators the continued presence of this individual poses a clear and immediate danger to himself/herself and/or other members of the University community. Under such circumstances a formal hearing must be held within a requisite number of school/working days, determined by the areas responsible for each constituency, to lift the suspension or impose more severe sanctions.


The University has an obligation to educate its community regarding the harmful effects and legal consequences associated with alcohol and other drug use. Special attention has been paid to providing a balance between educational and punitive components. A series of educational and prevention programs are offered to the University community, while at the same time alerting members to the consequences of noncompliance. It is hoped that all members of the University community will strive to promote behaviors that are compatible with the educational mission of the University, including the establishment of healthy and responsible norms.