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Alcohol Policy

Since it is a Jesuit and Catholic university, Fordham seeks to educate the whole person. Therefore, it provides its students with a value-laden curriculum that challenges them both to stretch themselves intellectually and to develop the capacity for mature moral judgment. We are not content, however, merely to challenge our students in the classroom. Far from it. Realizing that much of their education (perhaps even the majority of it) takes place outside of the classroom, we seek to provide them with a supportive campus environment that will enable them to grow into the full possession of the many talents that they have been given. Since we understand the role that out-of-class activities play in the spiritual, intellectual, moral and social development of our students, the Fordham community has for years been concerned with the adverse effects that alcohol has on the lives—and on the academic performance— of our students. In order to confront the challenges that substance abuse poses to the University’s educational mission, Fordham will continue to offer counseling services and medical referrals to students who present themselves for help. At the same time, the University will continue to challenge its students to lead healthy lives and to develop those mature patterns of behavior that will enable them to become men and women of conscience, competence, compassion, and commitment to the cause of the human family.

-Joseph M. McShane, S.J. President, Fordham University

The purpose of this policy is to establish an environment in which the legal and responsible use of alcohol is the norm, and in which its illegal use and abuse are not tolerated. This occurs through comprehensive alcohol prevention initiatives, which include education, early intervention, environmental management, harm reduction, and assessment strategies.

Alcohol Prevention
Fordham University offers comprehensive substance abuse prevention that begins at New Student Orientation and continues throughout the year. Prevention initiatives include Residential Life floor meetings and Substance Abuse and Prevention Program and Alcohol and Other Drug Education Core Programming for all first-year students, which offer information on the use and abuse of alcohol, and on the law and University policies. New York State Laws on alcohol are published in this handbook. Examples of educational strategies include intensive student leader trainings regarding the applicable laws and University policies, awareness campaigns such as National Collegiate Alcohol Awareness Week and Alcohol Screening Day. The University’s early intervention programs for students identified as at risk of developing an alcohol or addiction disorder are offered through Substance Abuse Prevention, Alcohol and other Drug Education, University Health Services, and Counseling and Psychological Services.

Students who demonstrate a need for more individualized care, or who repeatedly violate the alcohol policy, may be required to participate in an educational screening and brief intervention provided by the Prevention and Support Program at Rose Hill or the Office of Alcohol and Other Drug Education at Lincoln Center. Members of the University community who wish to discuss in confidence matters related to substance abuse are encouraged to contact University Counseling and Psychological Services (CPS). CPS staff members are available as psychologists, consultants, and resource persons. For more information on resources and referral information, please refer to the Drug-Free Campus Guidelines.

University Policy
Although the University’s primary emphasis in this area is prevention, it also recognizes its responsibility to implement and enforce alcohol regulations that are consistent with New York State laws and address the issues of personal health and safety for the community.

This policy, as part of Fordham’s overall alcohol prevention efforts, aims to increase awareness of the primary and secondary impact alcohol abuse can create, promote safety at social events, and encourage the responsible use of alcohol when permitted.

University policy includes but is not limited to the following provisions, whether they occur on or off-campus:

  • No person under the age of twenty-one may possess, consume, or be in the presence of alcohol (except in officially-designated spaces and/or at approved events organized in compliance with this Alcohol Policy).
  • Fordham University prohibits inappropriate and dangerous behavior that is a direct result of alcohol consumption, including intoxication. Any student who is observed to be intoxicated may have their conduct documented and adjudicated through the Student Conduct Process. Upon the outcome of that meeting, the student may be found in violation of the alcohol policy regardless of their age.
  • The University prohibits the possession of items used for common distribution of alcohol in volume on leased or owned University property. Such items include, but are not limited to, kegs and other large-volume containers
  • Drinking games and other activities that encourage rapid consumption of alcohol are violations of the alcohol policy, including unauthorized games not involving alcohol but mimicking these activities, and the use of devices (e.g. funnels, shot glasses, beer pong tables, etc.) which, by their very nature, promote abusive and potentially dangerous alcohol consumption. The University prohibits organizing and/or participating in activities that encourage excessive drinking (e.g. beer pong, drinking games or contests, etc.). Charging a fee when hosting parties is strictly prohibited. Possession of bars, bar signs, shot glasses and/or empty alcohol containers, even for decorative purposes, is also prohibited.
  • The University prohibits the possession and consumption of alcohol within public areas and administrative and academic buildings without permission from the authorized University official. For students, student clubs, organizations, and groups, as well as events and activities that are advertised to and/or open to students the campus Dean of Students or their designated representative, will provide approval after a review. Any reservation of space at the University for an event including alcohol service must disclose this element at the time of reservation, must be received at least one month prior to the planned date, and receive approval from the campus Dean od Students prior. Alcoholic beverages are not allowed in any area of any freshman Residence Hall as well as the hallways, or other public areas of any residential area. Any event planned for lounge areas in upper-class halls must be approved and adhere to the relevant requirements of this policy under Facilities.
  • It is prohibited for an underage student to be in the presence of any other person legally or illegally possessing, consuming or selling alcoholic beverages, except when authorized at an approved event.
  • It is prohibited for anyone over the age of twenty-one to consume/possess alcoholic beverages in the presence of individuals under the age of twenty-one, except when authorized at an approved event.
  • Alcohol may not be provided to any person who is underage. For purposes of this regulation, “provide” means to sell, lend, give, make available, exchange, barter or furnish in any way. In Residence Halls, the relevant student social host policy will apply if alcohol is available in student rooms. Hosts and/or event planners and sponsors are responsible for misconduct if they passively allow prohibited alcohol use.
  • Individuals who are twenty-one years of age or older may possess and consume beverages containing alcohol in their rooms in University residential units (refer for specific policies to the Office of Residential Life handbooks) or at officially-sponsored and approved events. However, conduct resulting from the consumption of alcohol that is in any way illegal or in violation of this or any other policy is prohibited.
  • Students are not permitted to possess or produce false identification or identification that alters one’s age.
  • Fordham University expects all students to understand the consequences of driving under the influence of alcohol and to abide by state law.
  • Students who procure alcoholic beverages for, or who serve alcoholic beverages to underage persons, who present or falsify documents for this purpose, and/or who contribute in any way to illegal alcohol consumption, are not conducting themselves in a responsible manner. Further, a student who contributes in any way, however minor, to the intoxication of another person should be aware that they can be held personally liable for any injury or damage the intoxicated person causes or in which he or she becomes involved. For more information regarding New York State General Obligations Law, please refer to the Drug-Free Campus Guidelines section of the Student Handbook.

State Laws
A Fordham University education includes due respect for the laws of the State of New York. The University cannot condone or remain neutral to the breach of such laws. Each student must assume full personal responsibility for his or her compliance with all state laws, including, but not limited to, the New York State Alcoholic Beverage Control Law and the New York State General Obligations Law (portions of which are reproduced in the Drug Free Campus Guidelines section in this handbook), and with the University policy on alcohol which, under certain circumstances, may be more restrictive than state law.

Alcohol in Various Facilities

Alcoholic beverages are not permitted in the student cafeterias of the University. Any exceptions to this policy must be approved in advance by the Dean of Students or designate as well as Dining Services and abide by the approval procedures outlined in this policy.

Residence Halls
Private Rooms in the Residence Halls
Students living in the residence halls are individually responsible for compliance with the laws of the State of New York regarding the possession, sale, and distribution of alcoholic beverages. Each student is also responsible for compliance with University policy which, under certain circumstances, may be more restrictive than state law.

In the residence halls, University policy has been developed to foster an environment that promotes the intellectual, moral and religious development of its students. Individuals of legal drinking age may possess and/or consume alcohol in their rooms/suites, provided all roommates/suitemates, present or absent, are of legal drinking age. However, the possession and/or consumption of alcohol in first year halls by any-students, regardless of age is prohibited. University disciplinary action may be taken should drinking in private rooms become a public event, i.e., because of noise, the number of people, or intoxication. Reasonable amounts of alcohol are allowed in private rooms of students over the age of 21. Excessive amounts of alcohol and/or alcohol discovered at events and activities violating the Alcohol Policy may be confiscated at the discretion of the Residential Life staff and/or the Department of Public Safety For additional and more specific guidelines on limits to alcohol allowed in private rooms, please see the Office of Residential Life Handbook.

Lounges and Other Public Areas of the Residence Halls
Alcoholic beverages are not allowed in the lounges and other public areas of the residence halls except under the following two circumstances:

  1. Alcoholic beverages may be allowed at officially-approved residence hall parties held in common areas of residence halls whose populations are predominantly over the legal drinking age provided the party is limited to those who are of legal drinking age. A member of the residence hall staff and the public safety staff must always be present at such parties.
  2. Alcoholic beverages may be allowed at planned dance parties or dinners held in common areas of residence halls whose populations are predominantly over the legal drinking age. Food service bartenders and drink tickets are required at such events and alcoholic beverages may be served to persons of legal drinking age with proper identification. Persons at such events who are not of legal drinking age are not permitted to possess or consume alcoholic beverages.

General Facilities and Premises
Sponsors of events which are held on other University premises at which alcoholic beverages are served must first obtain approval from the authorized University official. Events planned by students, student clubs, organizations, and groups as well as events and activities that are advertised to and/or open to students are submitted through the space reservation process to the campus Dean of Students or their designated representative for approval after review. Permission from the campus Dean of Student’s Office is required for alcoholic beverages to be served in any public areas of the campus and event reservation requests must indicate that alcohol is intended to be served. The possession/consumption of alcohol in the public areas of the campus is prohibited, with the exception of officially approved events. University-sponsored events for trustees, alumni, parents, and faculty may be exempted through the space reservation process managed by the campus Office of Student Involvement on a case-by-case basis from some of the regulations below, except number 8 (adherence to state law).

Registered Events with Alcohol Service
Events and activities sponsored by student groups, clubs, and organizations, in which alcohol is sold/served must first be approved through the space reservation process managed by the campus Office for Student Involvement. The process of registering social events is intended to create thought in the planning process. The registration process also offers an opportunity for registrants to receive important information such as copies of the University alcohol policy and state law, fact sheets on alcohol, and event planning recommendations.

Regulations for Registered Events:

  1. Events at which alcohol is planned to be served (as described above) must be approved by the Dean of Students or designate via the space reservation process managed by the Office for Student Involvement no less than one month before they are to be held and before publicity is distributed, including online and through social media.
  2. Entities which sponsor social events also share the responsibility to assure good behavior at their events and activities and may have to assure that staff are assigned to work the event.
  3. Signs clearly stating state law pertaining to alcohol consumption must be conspicuously evident at the event entrance, registration area, drink ticket purchase area, and/or bar.
  4. Student groups, organizations, or clubs which sponsor an event where alcohol is sold/served may not use University funds including student activities monies to purchase or provide by any means alcoholic beverages for the event without specific approval by the Dean of Students or designate and in accordance with the policies and procedures contained in this section of the University Regulations.
  5. Neither direct nor implied reference to the intended availability of alcoholic beverages may be made in any publicity in connection with the activity without specific approval by the Dean of Students or designate and in accordance with the policies and procedures contained in this section of the University Regulations.
  6. In order to minimize the risk of excessive consumption, intoxication, and mitigate the harmful effects of alcohol, food must be provided at events and activities at which alcohol is served and non-alcoholic beverages must also be prominently evident and equally available.
  7. Alcoholic beverages may not be removed from the designated area of the event by guests and participants.
  8. In accordance with New York State Law and this policy, alcoholic beverages will only be served to persons 21 years of age or older who have proper identification.
  9. Whenever alcoholic beverages are to be served at an event, the sponsoring group must purchase the alcohol through Dining Services' catering area and hire a bartender provided through Dining Services.
  10. The Dining Services bartender, as well as the staff sponsoring/organizing the event, are responsible to assure that alcoholic beverages are served to only those persons 21 years of age or older. Due to the wide availability of false identification, Fordham University identification cards matched to the University-provided list of student birthdays is the minimum standard to establish that student purchasers or consumers of alcohol are of-age. The campus Office for Student Involvement can furnish a list for this purpose to the sponsoring group.
  11. Events at which of-age and underage individuals will be present must use a system to differentiate those who may legally purchase and consume alcohol from those who may not. The campus Office for Student Involvement can assist with various options including wristbands and drink tickets.
  12. Access to events and activities at which alcohol is approved to be served must be controlled in order to assure that those not of legal drinking age cannot gain access to alcohol.
  13. Event participants may not serve themselves or others alcoholic beverages. Only one alcoholic beverage at a time may be served to each individual attending the event. Reasonable limits on total alcohol purchase will be set according to the overall duration of the event. Drink tickets will be sold at the entrance to the event.
  14. Sponsoring organizations will be responsible for hiring Department of Public Safety staff for any event at which alcohol is served. One Department of Public Safety guard per 50 guests is recommended. A minimum of 2 guards is required at dances or large-scale social events at which alcohol will not be served. The group sponsoring the event must pay all contract guard-costs.
  15. Sponsoring groups must see to it that guests conduct themselves according to the University Regulations, the University Code of Conduct and/or Residential Life policy.
  16. Sponsors must ensure that the serving of alcoholic beverages ceases at least one-half hour prior to the scheduled end of the registered activity.

Penalties for violations of the above regulations pertaining to Registered Events include:

  • Fines up to $200
  • University disciplinary action
  • Loss, curtailment, or elimination of social privileges
  • Loss of event registration on campus