Alcohol and Other Drug Policy

Reviewed By: Administrative Council on December 15, 2003
Approved By: Albert K. Karnig, President on December 16, 2003
Reviewed By: Administrative Council on April 23, 2007
Approved By: Albert K. Karnig, President on May 18, 2007
Reviewed By: Administrative Council
Approved By: Albert K. Karnig, President

Source / Authority

Inquiries regarding sales or serving of alcohol --- Contact University Enterprises Corporation Executive Director (909-537-3549) 
Inquiries regarding alcohol use in residence halls --- Contact Vice President for Student Affairs (909-537-5185) 
Inquiries regarding approval of Alcohol Use Permits --- Contact University Police Chief (909-537-5165) 
Inquiries regarding laws applicable to alcohol use --- Contact University Police Chief (909-537-5165) 
Inquiries regarding alcohol-related advertising --- Contact Associate Vice President for Strategic Communications (909-537-5007)


In July 2001, the CSU Board of Trustees approved a resolution to adopt and institute the recommendations made by the CSU Alcohol Policies and Prevention Programs Committee. The Committee made ten specific recommendations such as requiring each campus to develop comprehensive alcohol policies, promoting awareness of the policy on campus, requiring each campus to develop an alcohol advisory council, requiring each campus to gather data about alcohol use and programs, and requiring campuses to establish alcohol awareness training and treatment programs. This policy is part of the campus response to the CSU Board of Trustees Resolution #REP 07-01-03.

The University administration recognizes the consumption of alcoholic beverages as part of the American culture. It is also recognized that the majority of the students within the CSU, as well as faculty and staff, are of legal drinking age and use alcohol responsibly. For that reason, it is consistent with campus policy to allow for the sale and advertising of alcoholic beverages on the campus as long as it is done legally and within guidelines that promote responsible use.

The unlawful possession, use, manufacture, distribution, or sale of illicit drugs or drug-related paraphernalia, or alcohol, and the misuse of legal pharmaceutical drugs is prohibited by CSUSB.

It is also recognized that alcohol abuse and drug use/ abuse is a threat to the health and academic success of CSU students. Consistent with the University Strategic Plan, the administration desires to provide a safe and secure environment for all CSUSB faculty, staff and students. This policy is intended to help enforce laws relating to the alcohol and drug use and promote related education and risk reduction efforts.


Sale or Consumption of Alcoholic Beverages On Campus

Sales or consumption of alcoholic beverages is limited to beer and wine. No distilled alcohol is authorized to be sold or consumed on campus. Only the University Enterprises Corporation Dining Services Department is authorized to conduct the sale and/or service of alcoholic beverages. University Enterprises Corporation shall maintain the proper licenses which give the authority to sell beer or wine and shall adhere to all laws applicable to the sale and consumption of alcoholic beverages.

On a routine basis, beer and wine may be sold only in the Commons or Santos Manuel Student Union "Pub." University Enterprises Corporation shall develop and adhere to a policy in which all University Enterprises Corporation employees who sell and serve alcohol receive proper and adequate training including periodic refresher training. The University Enterprises Corporation Executive Director shall be responsible for the proper licensing and training.

Sales of Alcoholic Beverages

  • Promotion of alcoholic beverages should not encourage any form of alcohol abuse nor place emphasis on quantity and frequency of use.

The sale of alcoholic beverages shall never be used as a source of fund raising.

Restriction Of The Possession Advertising Or Consumption Of Alcoholic Beverages In Campus Residence Halls

No alcoholic beverages or alcoholic beverage advertising are allowed in campus residence halls.

Special Events

The consumption of beer or wine shall not be the main focus of any event. With approval and prescribed control, only beer or wine may be served at special events along with substantial food such as a meal or heavy hors d'oeuvres. Non-alcoholic beverages must also be offered and be displayed as prominently as the alcoholic beverages.

Alcohol may not be sold, served or consumed at events sponsored by student organizations. If alcohol is served at events where students are present, the normal controls regarding service will apply.

The following conditions shall apply to the sale or consumption of beer or wine at special events:

  • An Alcohol Use Permit must be obtained through Special Events and Guest Services and approved by the Vice President for Administration and Finance or his/her designee.
  • A full time CSUSB management employee administrator, or his/her designee, or faculty member must make application of the permit.
  • A full time management employee/administrator, or his/her designee or faculty member must assume responsibility for the conduct of the event and be present during the entire period in which the alcohol is consumed.
  • Beer and/or wine may be purchased and served by faculty or staff at small events which are not attended by the public or students. A permit will be required, and the individual signing the permit application shall be held accountable for the conduct of the event.
  • Except as noted above, alcohol may only be served by University Enterprises Corporation. If a special license is required, it shall be obtained by University Enterprises Corporation.
  • A specific location must be designated as the area in which the alcohol will be consumed. Alcohol will not be allowed to leave this area.
  • A certificate of insurance may be required for events in which alcohol is present. If required, the University will be named as insured on the certificate. The event sponsor is responsible for the certificate of insurance, including cost, prior to the event.

Special Event at Palm Desert Campus

The Dean of the Palm Desert Campus will approve the Permit to Serve Alcoholic Beverages for special events to be held at the Palm Desert Campus, and will forward the permit to the University Police Chief for approval. The Dean or a member of his/her management staff will attend the entire event at which alcoholic beverages are served.

Promotion, Advertising

The event or social occasion should be the focus for promotion and advertising. Promotion and advertising for any event, on or off campus, may not include alcoholic beverage logos, names, or other depictions for the purpose of alcohol sales, nor promote or advertise the serving or sale of alcohol.

Alcohol Advertising

In addition, the advertising of alcoholic beverages on the campus, including athletic events in university owned or operated facilities is permissible, but alcohol advertising should not encourage any form of alcohol abuse nor place emphasis on quantity and frequency of use.  For the purposes of this policy, alcoholic beverages refer to beer and wine.  Any such advertising must comply with the following policy guidelines that are consistent with the "Guidelines for Beverage Alcohol Marketing" distributed by the National Inter-Association Task Force on Alcohol Issues, a higher education coalition dedicated to the responsible use and advertising of alcoholic beverages:

  • Any promotional displays or messages shall incorporate clear language and encourage only responsible and legal use of alcoholic beverages.  Such messages shall be at least as prominent as any other message content such as product slogans or listed attributes of a particular product.
  • Advertising from local retailers or distributors that promote "drink specials" (e.g., 2 for 1 drinks, half-price happy hour drinks, etc.) should not be accepted or posted.
  • Beverage alcohol advertising on campus or in institutional media should not portray drinking as a solution to personal or academic problems, or as necessary to personal, social, sexual, or academic success.
  • Beverage alcohol marketers/distributors must support campus alcohol awareness programs that encourage and inform students about the responsible use or non-use of beer, wine, or distilled spirits.
  • Alcohol beverage promotions permitted by the university may not incorporate students or employees (including coaches, faculty, etc.) as active participants in a promotional message.
  • In all promotions, alcohol beverage trademarks or logos must be clearly subordinate to the sponsored event itself.
  • Promotional activities should not be associated with existing campus events or programs without the prior knowledge or consent of the president.
  • The name of an alcoholic beverage product may not be connected to the name of a university event or a facility (e.g., XYZ wine golf tournament, etc.).
  • The university's name or department or any related nickname may not be utilized in a way that implies a product endorsement by the university (e.g., XYZ Beer -- beverage of choice for CSUSB fans).
  • Alcoholic beverages should not be provided as free awards to individual students, campus organizations or other members of the academic community.
  • University departments and organizations may not distribute clothing, posters, or other promotional items that utilize the university symbol in combination with an alcoholic beverage trademark or logo.
  • Any alcohol promotional material connected with any university athletic event (e.g., media guide game programs) must receive prior written approval by the athletic director and the president.
  • Promotional materials associated with any other university program (other than athletics) must be approved by the vice president for student affairs.
  • This policy does not restrict the amount or content of alcohol advertising, purchased independently through commercial radio or TV companies, during broadcasts of athletic events.  However, broadcasters under contract with a CSU institution should strongly be urged to follow the above provisions when accepting commercials that promote alcoholic beverages.
  • Student newspaper publications should also be encouraged to follow the above provisions for any advertising messages for alcoholic beverage companies/distributors.

Laws Applicable To Alcohol Beverages And Controlled Substances

The following is not a comprehensive list and summarizes only a few laws that govern alcoholic beverages and controlled substances. Laws may change over time and individuals are expected to be aware of current federal, state, and local laws.

Federal Laws Governing Controlled Substances

(See United States Code 21, Sections 811, 844, 853, 881)

  • The unlawful possession, use, manufacture, sale, or distribution of alcohol or all scheduled (illicit) drugs may lead to prosecution, and depending on the nature of the offense, may be categorized as a misdemeanor or felony and may be punished by fine and/or imprisonment.
  • Examples of illicit drugs include narcotics, barbiturates, amphetamines, cocaine, cannabis, hallucinogens, and synthetic drugs, e.g. PCP.
  • First offense penalties for the illegal possession of a controlled substance range from up to 1 year in prison and a fine of at least $1,000 but not more than $250,000, or both. Second and subsequent convictions can include increased imprisonment and fines.
  • Depending on the amount, first offense maximum penalties for trafficking marijuana range from 5 years in prison and a fine of $250,000 to life imprisonment and a fine of $4 million.
  • Depending on the amount, first offense maximum penalties for trafficking class I and II controlled substances (methamphetamine, heroin, cocaine, cocaine base, PCP, LSD, fentanyl, etc.) range from 5 years to life imprisonment and fines from $2 to $4 million.
  • Property including vehicles, vessels, aircraft, money, securities, or other things of value which are used in, intended for use in, or traceable to transactions that involve controlled substances in violation of federal law are subject to forfeiture to the United States.
  • Persons convicted of possession or distribution of controlled substances can be barred from receiving benefits from any and all federal programs including student grants and loans, except some long term drug treatment programs.

The federal Drug-Free Workplace Act of 1988 (41 U.S.C. 701) requires that University employees directly engaged in the performance of work on a Federal contract or grant shall abide by this Policy as a condition of employment and shall notify the Principal Investigator and/or the Chair of the sponsoring department or unit within five days if they are convicted of any criminal drug statute violation occurring in the workplace or while on University business. In turn, the Principal Investigator or Chair shall notify the administrative head of the Office of Research and Sponsored Programs. That administrator is then obligated to notify the Federal contracting or granting agency within ten days of receiving notice of such conviction, and to take appropriate corrective action or require the employee to participate satisfactorily in an approved drug abuse assistance rehabilitation program. 

California Law Governing Controlled Substances

California law regarding controlled substances is, in many respects, similar to federal law. Violations can result in imprisonment, fine, or both.

California Law Governing Marijuana

Possession of not more than 28.5 grams (1 ounce) of marijuana is a misdemeanor, which is punishable by a fine of not more than $100.00. Possession of more than 28.5 grams of marijuana shall be punished by imprisonment in the county jail for a period no more than six months or by a fine of not more than $500.00, or by both. The cultivation, the possession for sale, or the sale of marijuana constitutes a felony. A felony conviction can involve serving time in a state prison. (California Health and Safety Code sections 11357- 11362.9)

The California Compassionate Use Act of 1996 removed state-level criminal penalties for the use, possession, and cultivation of marijuana for personal medical purposes approved by a physician for qualified patients and/or their primary caregivers. (California Health and Safety Code section 11362.5) California’s Compassionate Use Act conflicts with federal laws governing controlled substances. The California State University, including San Bernardino, receives federal funding in the form of student financial aid and grants that would be in jeopardy if those federal laws did not take precedent in our policies. Thus, the use and possession of marijuana in any form or amount violates the CSU Student Conduct Code and the California Compassionate Use Act does not apply at the California State University San Bernardino.

California Law Governing Alcoholic Beverages

  • No person may sell, furnish, give, or cause to be sold, furnished or given away, any alcoholic beverage to a person under the age of 21, and no person under the age of 21 may purchase alcoholic beverages (California Business and Professions Code section 25658).
  • It is unlawful for any person under the age of 21 to possess alcoholic beverages on any street or highway or in any place open to public view (California Business and Professions Code section 25662).
  • It is a misdemeanor to sell, furnish, or give away an alcoholic beverage to any person under the age of 21 (California Business and Professions Code 25658) or to any one obviously intoxicated (California Business and Professions Code section 25602).
  • It is unlawful for any person to drink while driving, or to have an open container of an alcoholic beverage in a moving vehicle. With a blood alcohol level of .08 or higher, a driver is presumed under the influence of alcohol. Between .04% and .08% a person may be found guilty of driving under the influence (California Vehicle Code section 23152).
  • It is unlawful for any person under the age of 21, who has 0.05 percent or more by weight of alcohol in their blood, to drive a vehicle (California Vehicle Code section 23140). 

Other California Laws

Every person who is found in any public place under the influence of intoxicating liquor, any drug, controlled substance or any combination of any of the above and is in such a condition that that person is unable to exercise care for their own safety or the safety of others is guilty of a misdemeanor (California Penal Code section 647(f)).

Health Risks Associated With The Use Of Alcohol And Other Drugs

The following information is meant to be used as a guide to inform you of potential drug and alcohol problems. This information should not be used as a diagnostic tool, nor is the information definitive of substance abuse. If you have concerns about a person’s behavior, please visit the Alcohol and Drug Education web page.


Alcohol is a depressant that reduces activity in the central nervous system. It can decrease heart rate, lower blood pressure, and decrease respiration rate. Alcohol intoxication lowers inhibitions, impairs judgment, slows reaction times and causes loss of fine motor coordination. 
When a person drinks too much, their capacity to process information and make safe decisions is impaired. The risks associated with alcohol misuse include hangover, overdose and addiction. Alcohol misuse and abuse places you at increased risk for physical injury, driving under the influence, sexual assault and other violent behavior. Misusing alcohol can also have a negative impact on academic success, work performance, friendships and family relationships.

Numerous health risks are associated with drinking. Alcohol can interact with many over-the-counter, prescription, and illegal drugs, intensifying the effects of these drugs and leading to potential organ failure or death. Long-term excessive drinking can lead to a variety of health problems such as: decreased brain function; impaired sensation, memory lapses or blackouts, organ damage, and addiction. Research indicates that adult children of alcoholics have as much as a four to six times greater risk of becoming an alcoholic or having a problem with other drugs.

Excessive drinking can result in alcohol poisoning. On average, it takes over an hour to eliminate the alcohol content of one drink from the body. Nothing can speed up this process- not even coffee or cold showers. Drinking too much or drinking a large quantity of alcohol quickly raises one’s blood alcohol content to the point where their body cannot effectively process the alcohol. This can result in overdose and possibly coma or death.


Effects of THC (the active ingredient in marijuana) vary depending on the person, setting, dose, and/or expectation of the user. Marijuana can make it harder to function and succeed in an academic or work setting, particularly when tasks require close attention and thoughtful decision-making. Using marijuana may impair one’s short-term memory, reading comprehension, and capacity to solve verbal and mathematical problems. Increased heart rate and uncomfortable feelings such as paranoia and panic are often experienced with marijuana use. Additionally, regular use may lead to “a motivational syndrome” with symptoms of listlessness, fatigue, inattention, withdrawal and apathy, making it difficult to achieve academic and personal goals.

Coordination is greatly affected by marijuana use since it slows reflexes and impairs visual perception. Driving while under the influence (or being driven by someone else under the influence) can be as dangerous as driving under the influence of alcohol. Regular use can lead to a variety of health problems such as elevated blood pressure and decreased body temperature; irritation of the mouth, throat, and lungs, and aggravation of asthma, bronchitis, and emphysema; chronic lung disease and cancer. Additionally, one can test positive for marijuana up to 3 months after use.


Inhaling fumes (also known as “huffing”) from chemicals such as paint thinners, glue, gasoline, propane, butane, nitrous oxide, and others can be extremely risky and can cause death. Other health consequences include loss of inhibition, loss of motor coordination and/or muscle weakness, headache, nausea or vomiting, cramps, slurred speech, wheezing, unconsciousness, depression, memory impairment, and/or damage to heart and nervous system.

Ecstasy (MDMA):

Ecstasy (MDMA) is a hallucinogenic-amphetamine that can lead to a variety of physical problems such as cardiac difficulties, dangerously high body temperature, severe thirst and heat exhaustion, sensory distortion and heightened arousal. Even with limited use, it can permanently alter serotonin levels in your brain, which can increase the risk of chronic depression.


Anabolic steroids are synthetic versions of the hormone testosterone. Used medically to supplement normal hormonal levels after injury or disease, others use steroids to gain an edge (albeit illegally) in athletic endeavors. Steroid use can lead to a variety of health problems including high blood pressure, liver disease and cancer. Male users experience testicular atrophy, breast growth, impotence, sexual dysfunction, acne, and aggression (‘roid rage). Female users experience enlarged clitoris, deepened voice, male pattern baldness, and acne. Most of these effects are permanent even after steroid use has ended.


Cocaine is a highly addictive stimulant that can lead to serious health problems such as heart attack, respiratory failure, strokes, seizure, and/or death. Common effects of cocaine include damaged nasal tissues, malnutrition, intense anxiety and anger, violent behavior, restlessness, fear, paranoia, depression, and hallucinations.


Amphetamines are highly addictive stimulants that can have severe health consequences, including death. Even limited use can lead to many physical symptoms including increased heart rate and blood pressure; heart, brain, and lung damage, stroke, chronic fatigue and malnutrition. Psychological effects include anxiety, depression, mood swings, hallucinations, paranoia and psychosis.


LSD (acid) can dramatically alter one’s thought processes, mood, and perceptions. Initial effects of LSD are mostly physical and include dilated pupils, muscular weakness, rapid reflexes, decreased appetite, increased blood pressure and increased body temperature. As effects continue, the user begins to experience visual and other sensory distortion, which can result in unusual or frightening hallucinations. LSD can trigger more serious problems such as psychosis for individuals with a history of psychological problems. Effects may recur days or weeks later without further use (flashbacks).


Heroin is a highly addictive opiate that can be lethal in high doses. Health effects of heroin use include drowsiness and loss of appetite, addiction with severe withdrawal symptoms, impaired mental functioning, slowing of reflexes and physical activity; infection, hepatitis, and HIV (from needle sharing), or death from overdose.

Predatory Drugs:

These drugs are given to another person without them knowing, usually by slipping the drug into a drink. Rohypnol (aka. Roofies), is a potent tranquilizer that has been used to facilitate sexual assaults. Effects of the drug occur 20 to 30 minutes after ingestion and leave the person feeling drowsy, dizzy, and disoriented, rendering them helpless and immobile. In addition to these sedative effects, impaired balance and/or speech, and memory loss are common. Like rohypnol, GHB has also been associated with sexual assault. In its clear liquid form, it can easily be slipped into someone’s drink. Effects of the drug can be felt in 15-20 minutes and include dizziness, heavy drowsiness, and confusion.

Some people use GHB to enhance the effects of alcohol or other drugs. This combination can be especially life-threatening due to synergistic effects of the drugs. GHB use can lead to a variety of physical problems such as dizziness, nausea, breathing problems, memory loss, seizures, unconsciousness, and in some cases, death. Originally used as an animal tranquilizer, ketamine is now used as a club drug due to its hallucinogenic effects. Many negative effects can result from ketamine use including vomiting, numbness, loss of muscle control, paranoia, and aggression. In larger doses, effects may include convulsions, decreased oxygen to the brain, coma and even death. Individuals who use ketamine are at increased risk for sexual and physical assault since their loss of muscle control and mental state make them vulnerable to assault.