Carlow University is committed to promoting the health and well-being of all our students. As part of this commitment, Carlow complies with and upholds all federal, state and local laws that regulate or prohibit the manufacture, possession, sale, use, abuse or distribution of alcohol or controlled substances. Carlow University has adopted the following policy to help create an environment that promotes and reinforces healthy, responsible living, respect for community standards, the responsibility of the individual within the wider community, and the intellectual, social, emotional, spiritual, ethical and physical well-being of its community members. The University prohibits the manufacture, possession, use, or dispensing of alcohol by students, residents or guests in the University’s residence halls, regardless of age. Violations of such laws and/or University policies that come to the attention of University officials will be addressed through the Student Code of Conduct process or through prosecution in the courts, or both. There may occasionally be University-sponsored events on or off campus at which alcohol is served. These events are conducted in accordance with federal, state and local laws and must be specifically approved by the President or an appropriate member of the President’s Cabinet. Events for which students are the primary participants or audience will not serve alcohol.

Alcoholic beverages or any other controlled substance found in a residence hall room shall be considered, in the absence of clear evidence to the contrary, to belong to all occupants of the room, and the Student Code of Conduct will apply equally. Alcoholic beverages or any other controlled substance which are brought to a residence hall room by a visitor or guest shall, in the absence of clear evidence to the contrary, be considered to belong to the occupant(s) of the room who are present at the time of the infraction. If it is determined that alcoholic beverages or any other controlled substance have been brought into the residence hall by a visitor or guest, that individual may no longer be permitted access to the residence halls, and his/her host may be held responsible for the alcohol violation.

According to federal law, the University has the right to notify a student’s parents whenever the University determines that a student has violated the University’s alcohol and drug policy.

Please note that the policy and guidelines are applicable to the Carlow campus and to University activities off-campus.

Specific Alcohol and/or Drug Student Code of Conduct Violations May Include

06.01 Unauthorized Possession and/or Use of Alcohol and/or Other Drugs 

06.02 Open Container of Alcohol in Unauthorized Area 

06.03 On Campus Possession of Kegs or Other Large Containers of Alcohol 

06.04 Suppling Alcohol to Minors 

06.05 Hosting Persons While in Possession and/or Use of Alcohol and/or Other Drugs 

06.06 Excessive Consumption of Alcohol 

06.07 Possession of Drug Paraphernalia  

06.99 Other Alcohol and/or Other Drug Violation 

The University emphasizes that anyone who is seriously intoxicated should seek or be provided medical attention. The safety and health of students is the overriding concern of the University. In cases of intoxication and/or alcohol poisoning, individuals are strongly encouraged to call the Carlow University Police Department (412.578.6007) for assistance. In order to encourage those who may be in danger from alcohol poisoning or alcohol-related injury to get proper assistance, a student seeking medical treatment for her/ his alcohol abuse, or a student assisting another student in obtaining such medical treatment, will have such assistance be considered a mitigating factor in favor of the reporting party in any subsequent Student Code of Conduct proceedings.


The University’s approach to drug and alcohol sanctions is to help the student examine her/his behavior and learn from the experience, so as to make more appropriate choices in the future.

First-Time Offenders – Drug and Alcohol

The Carlow University Police Department will be summoned and an internal Carlow University citation will be issued. The University citation carries with it conduct consequences that could include fines, participation in educational programs, restitution, community service or other sanctions. In any situation in which the alcohol policy violation occurs together with an additional violation of the University’s Code of Conduct Policy, the individual may be charged with all conduct violations applicable to the conduct. If the student is living in a residence hall, she/he must meet with the Assistant Director of Campus Life. Violators will be placed on residential probation for the rest of the semester and will receive further sanctions for any residence hall violation.

Second-Time Offenders – Drug and Alcohol

Carlow University Police will be summoned and a state citation for the offense(s) will be issued by the police officer. Among other things, the student could be charged with disorderly conduct and public intoxication in addition to underage drinking. Under Pennsylvania law, for a person under the age of 21, the penalty for the first offense of underage drinking includes suspension of driving privileges for 90 days. (see 18 Pa. C.S.A. § 6310.4). Students who are found responsible for a second drug and alcohol offense will face stiffer sanctions as a result of the University conduct process, which could include removal from the residence halls, community service, and work with the Frances Warde Wellness Center. The University may notify a student’s parents following the University’s determination that a second violation of the University’s alcohol policy has occurred.

Third-Time Offenders – Drug and Alcohol

Students cited for a third drug and alcohol policy violation could face suspension from the University and removal from the residence hall. If the student remains in school (or, if suspended, upon the student’s return from suspension), further consequences will be determined through the conduct process that must be met to remain enrolled. The University may notify a student’s parents following determination that another violation of the University’s drug or alcohol policy has occurred. For a third alcohol offense, a State citation also will be issued.  See No. 1 above under Second-Time Offenders.

The Vice President for Student Affairs and Dean of Students has the discretion to impose more severe conduct action than described above, as he/she deems appropriate on a case-by-case basis.


In addition to penalties that may be imposed by the University for violations of the Drug and Alcohol policy, there are separate penalties which the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania may impose for the possession, sale or delivery of a controlled substance. For example:

The penalty for the sale or delivery, or possession with the intent to deliver, of a Schedule I or II drug, which is a narcotic, includes up to 15 years imprisonment and/or a $250,000.00 fine. (Pennsylvania follows the federal schedule for classification of controlled substances).

The penalty for the sale, delivery or distribution of phencyclidines (PCP), methamphetamines, coca and its derivatives, and marijuana in excess of 1,000 pounds includes up to 10 years imprisonment and/or a $100,000.00 fine. The penalty for the sale, delivery, or distribution of any other Schedule I, II, or III drug not listed above is up to five years imprisonment and/or a $15,000.00 fine.

The penalty for the sale, delivery or distribution of any Schedule IV drug includes up to three years imprisonment and/or a $10,000.00 fine.

The penalty for the sale, delivery, or distribution of any Schedule V drug includes up to one year imprisonment and/ or a $1,000.00 fine.

Penalties for unauthorized possession of a controlled substance include up to one year imprisonment and/or a a $5,000.00 fine for the first offense. Penalties for possession of a small amount of marijuana for personal use or with the intent to distribute but not to sell or the distribution of a small amount of marijuana but not sale include up to 30 days in prison and/or a fine not to exceed $500.00.

Penalties for the intentional purchase or knowing receipt in commerce by any person of any controlled substance, other drug or device from any person not authorized by law to sell, distribute, dispense or otherwise deal in such controlled substance, other drug or device include up to three years imprisonment and/or a fine not to exceed $5,000.00.


Federal penalties and sanctions for illegal possession of a controlled substance include the following:

First conviction: up to 1 year in prison, fine of $1,000.00  to $100,000.00, or both

Second conviction: at least 15 days and up to 2 years imprisonment, $5,000.00 to $250,000.00 fine, or both

After two drug convictions: at least 90 days and up to 3 years in prison, $5,000.00 to $250,000.00 fine, or both

Special federal sentencing provisions for possession of crack cocaine include a mandatory prison term of at least 5 years and up to 20 years, fine of up to $250,000.00, or both, for a first conviction if the amount of crack exceeds 5 grams, for a second conviction if amount exceeds 3 grams, and for a third or subsequent conviction if the amount exceeds 1 gram.

Additional federal sanctions may also apply including forfeiture of vehicles used to transport controlled substances, denial of federal benefits including student loans, grants, and contracts and denial or revocation of federal licenses and benefits.


Users may have impaired judgment, balance, coordination and/or sight, which may lead to increased risk of accidents and injuries. For example, alcohol-related traffic accidents are the leading cause of death for teens. Other risks include, dependence, hallucinations, fatal overdose, blacking out or becoming unconscious, nausea, vomiting and even death by aspiration of vomit.

Over time, users may experience long-term health risks, including, for example, increased blood pressure, increased risk of heart attack, interference with brain development, brain damage resulting in permanent psychosis, cancer of the mouth, esophagus or stomach, liver damage (cirrhosis, alcohol hepatitis, cancer), ulcers, pancreatitis, birth defects, testicular atrophy and breast enlargement (in males), increased risk of breast cancer (in females). Prolonged, excessive drinking can shorten life span by 10 to 12 years.


Many resources are available both on and off campus for students struggling with substance abuse issues. For more information, please contact the Director of Health Services at 412.578.6174; the Director of Wellness and Fitness Services at 412.578.6042; or the University Mental Health Counselors at 412.578.6306  or 412.578.8731.

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