Alcohol Policy

1.00 Philosophy

California State University, Monterey Bay recognizes that the abuse of alcohol is detrimental to the educational mission of the University, as well as to individual members of the University community. All members of the University community have a stake in ensuring that alcohol is used in a responsible manner. To achieve this end, CSUMB has developed a comprehensive policy to address potential and/or actual problems with inappropriate use.

2.00 Purpose

The purpose of this policy is to address the legal and responsible use of alcohol. It is intended to reflect the University’s commitment to the principles, goals, and ideals described in the CSUMB Founding Vision, its core values, and to adhere to Executive Order 1109 of the CSU Chancellor's Office. Through wide dissemination of this policy, the University community will be informed of its contents, as required by the Drug-Free Workplace Act of 1988 and Drug-Free Schools and Campuses Act of 1989.

3.00 Scope

The CSUMB Alcohol Policy governs the possession, use, sale, and marketing of alcoholic beverages on campus or at University-sponsored events. This policy complies with local, state, and federal laws and clarifies sanctions and procedures for addressing instances of illegal or inappropriate use of alcohol.

Students, faculty, staff, guests, off-campus contractors and sponsors of University events, both as individuals and organizations, shall operate within the scope of the law and University policies and regulations when on campus or at University events.

The policy establishes parameters within which approval for use can occur and identifies administrative units responsible for handling policy and legal violations.  Policies of individual departments or campus organizations shall be in compliance with this Alcohol Policy and may impose more stringent standards.  Examples of these departments and campus organizations include Student Housing and Residential Life, Student Activities (e.g., Greek Letter Organizations and other student clubs and organizations), the Office of Student Conduct, and the Athletics Department. 

4.00 Definitions

Appropriate Vice President:  the Vice President of the area responsible for the event [for example, the Vice President for Student Affairs for students].  For the University Corporation, the Executive Director shall be considered the Appropriate Vice President.

Campus: for the purposes of this policy references to "campus" includes buildings and grounds located on the main CSUMB campus, and any buildings or facilities leased or operated by CSUMB or by a CSUMB auxiliary (e.g., Salinas City Center, Ryan Ranch, etc.); East Campus housing development Schoonover Park is excluded, except for the University House.

Recognized Group: a university department or an organization which has been recognized by the university.

University Event:  an official event sponsored by a Recognized Group and authorized by the University

University Sanctioned: an official event sponsored by a university department or recognized organization.

5.00 Adverse Effects of Inappropriate Use of Alcohol on the Campus Community

The following information is provided in accordance with the Drug-Free Workplace Act of 1988 and Drug-Free Schools and Communities Act of 1989.

  • The excessive use and abuse of alcohol pose numerous risks to the health and well being of individuals and the campus community. Examples of these risks include:  Excessive consumption of alcohol is associated with diminished academic performance. On the average, the more often a student drinks excessively, the lower his their grades.
  • Alcohol abuse may result in a variety of health and psychological problems for individuals who drink. In the short term, it may contribute to inappropriate risk-taking, which can result in violence, accidental injuries, deaths, unintended pregnancies, and sexually transmitted infections. In the long term, it may result in addiction, social and family losses, and physical deterioration.
  • Alcohol abuse has a direct effect on others. It is associated with violent and disruptive behavior that threatens others' safety, comfort, emotional well-being, and ability to function. The University also recognizes that alcohol use is prevalent in reports of crime experienced on campus, particularly sexual violence. The University encourages students to report such crimes, and will not take disciplinary action against individuals, including an under-age individuals, who report being the victim of a crime while under the influence of alcohol.

6.00 Campus Environment

The University expects its faculty, staff, and student employees to report to any work assignment unimpaired by the effects of alcohol and/or in condition to perform their duties safely and effectively. Students are also expected to be unimpaired in the classroom or while engaged in academic activities.

7.00 Authority

The appropriate Vice President (or designee) is the responsible University official for administration of this policy for events being sponsored by that division of the University or primarily involving employees of that division and will approve the use of alcohol at an event.  Approval to use alcohol at a University event shall be acquired prior to the event and documented on the form attached to this policy and available on the University's website.

8.00 Enforcement of Laws & Regulations

In the State of California, individuals 21 years of age or older may legally purchase, possess, and consume alcoholic beverages. All State laws are applicable to California State University, Monterey Bay, and to all individuals on the properties of the University.

The Business and Professions Code and related statutes control the sale, consumption, and possession of alcoholic beverages.

The California State Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC) Board is responsible for interpretation and enforcement of the laws regarding the consumption, sale, or possession of alcoholic beverages.

The University Police Department is responsible for enforcing local and state laws and responding to civil code and criminal code violations in its jurisdiction.

9.00 Use of Alcoholic Beverages

Except as indicated by this policy or California state law, it is prohibited for any person to sell, offer for sale, give away, or furnish another person in any manner, or consume any alcoholic beverage on the CSUMB campus. California state law imposes criminal penalties for the possession or use of alcoholic beverages by persons less than 21 years of age and for persons who furnish, give, sell, or cause to be sold, furnished or given away, any alcoholic beverage to a person under the age of 21. [State Alcoholic Beverage Control Act, Sections 25658 – 25665.]

9.10 Sale of Alcoholic Beverages on Campus

The sale of distilled spirits and/or malted liquor is NOT permitted on campus. Only beer and/or wine can be sold in accordance with applicable campus regulations, policies of the Trustees of the California State University, or applicable State laws. Permission to sell alcoholic beverages on campus is usually limited to the recognized campus food service agent and must stay in designated areas. Each individual 21 years of age or older shall only be allowed to purchase two alcoholic drinks at any one time.  The sale and/or service of alcohol to persons who are thought to be intoxicated is prohibited.

9.20 Service of Alcoholic Beverages on Campus

Beer and/or wine may be served on special occasions with prior approval at functions sponsored by approved student, faculty, staff, or administrative organizations, or by campus-related or off-campus organizations contracting for the use of University facilities. These alcoholic beverages will be permitted only in conjunction with food service, and will not be permitted before 4:00 pm on weekdays during academic terms. Servers shall check valid government issued picture identification to ensure that no guest under 21 years of age is offered or served alcohol. Non-alcoholic beverages must be as readily available as the alcoholic beverages being served; and, where practical, alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages must be served in the same manner.

9.2.1 Responsibility of Event/Activity Sponsors of University Events

When alcohol is to be served as part of a University Event of a Recognized Group (whether on or off campus), such group is responsible for ensuring that all provisions of this policy and all applicable state laws are enforced. The sponsoring group shall also be responsible for keeping the event area free of litter.

9.2.2 Responsibility of Event/Activity Participants

Participants will not be allowed to bring alcoholic beverages to any event, and/or exit an event in possession of open alcoholic beverage containers.

9.2.3 Responsibility of Contracted Users of the Campus

When alcohol is to be served as part of an event in University facilities, University Affairs, Conferences, and Events will include the Alcohol Approval  Form among the agreements completed in the contract process. The contracted user is responsible for ensuring that all provisions of this policy and applicable state laws are complied with and enforced. 

10.00 Marketing and Advertising

The advertising and promotion by co-sponsoring merchandisers of alcohol should focus on the event or activity being held, not on the products. Advertising of alcoholic beverages is limited to beer and wine only; advertisements for distilled spirits is not permitted.  Advertising from retailers or distributors that promote "drink specials" (e.g., 2 for 1, half-price happy hour drinks, etc.) are not allowed.

Any alcohol promotional material connected with any University athletic event (e.g., media guide game programs, off-campus billboards, etc.) must receive prior written approval by the Athletic Director and the President, or their designees. Promotional materials associated with any other University program (other than athletics) must be approved in writing by the Vice President for Student Affairs, or designee.

Alcohol beverage promotions permitted by the University may not incorporate quotes from or photos or other likenesses of students, student-athletes, employees (including coaches, faculty, etc.) or campus mascots as active participants in a promotional message.

Alcohol beverage marketers/distributors must help promote campus alcohol awareness programs that encourage and inform students about the responsible use or non-use of beer, wine, or distilled spirits (see section 13.00)

This policy does not restrict the amount or content of alcohol advertising purchased independently through commercial radio, TV and media companies, or during broadcasted athletic events.  However, broadcasters under contract with CSUMB should strongly be urged to follow the provisions of this policy when accepting commercials that promote alcoholic beverages.

Student media should also be encouraged to consider following the provisions of this policy for any advertising messages for alcoholic beverage companies/distributors/products.

10.10 Event Sponsorship/Support of Campus Events

Event sponsorship/support of campus events by alcohol beverage manufacturers and distributors is permitted only within the following guidelines:

  • Sponsorship agreements shall be discussed and approved in advance by the University President, or designee.  No sponsorship activities will be permitted without this approval. All corporate contributors shall conform to and comply with all University policies and procedures.
  • When a donation is made to the University in support of a program, event, or facility, the name of the alcohol beverage manufacturer or distributor shall not be connected to the name of the program, event, or facility itself, but may be listed as a contributor.
  • Sponsors shall not provide alcoholic beverages as free incentive awards to individual students, campus organizations, or departments. The consumption of beer or wine should not be the primary purpose of any activity.
  • University departments and organizations shall not distribute promotional clothing, posters, or other promotional items that utilize the University's name, seal, image, logo, or mascot in combination with an alcoholic beverage trademark, logo, or company name, or which imply University's endorsement of their product or company in any way, regardless of whether such promotional items are free or for sale.

10.20 Advertising

  • Advertisements for programs, events, or facilities which contain the name of an alcohol beverage manufacturer or distributor as a sponsor shall be approved prior to production by the appropriate University approving authority, and are permitted only in compliance with this policy.
  • Any advertising, promotional displays, or messages shall incorporate clear language to encourage only responsible and legal use of alcoholic beverages.  Such messages shall be at least as prominent (in content quantity and font size) as any other message content such as product slogans or listed attributes of a particular product. 
  • If the name of an alcohol beverage manufacturer or distributor is printed as a  sponsor, the alcoholic beverage trademark, logo, or company name must be clearly subordinate to the message concerning the event itself.  Event marketing and event advertising sponsored by alcohol beverage manufacturers or distributors shall not encourage any form of alcohol abuse nor should it place emphasis on quantity or frequency of use. Advertising, both on campus and in institutional media, shall not portray drinking as a solution to personal or academic problems or as conducive to personal, social, sexual, athletic, or academic success. In addition, advertisements may not associate alcohol with the performance of tasks that require skilled reactions, such as driving an automobile, or suggest that drinking is the sole purpose or dominant theme of an event.
  • Any advertising sponsored by an alcohol beverage manufacturer or distributor shall not imply that the alcohol is the main focus of the ad.

11.00 Employee Compliance

Any faculty, staff, administrator, or other employee who violates the alcohol policy may be subject to corrective or disciplinary action up to and including the possibility of dismissal, in accordance with appropriate collective bargaining agreements, CSU, and University and/or Corporation policies, and state and federal law.

Employees in violation of the alcohol policy may be required to participate fully in an approved counseling or rehabilitation program.

12.00 Accountability & Sanctions

Students (or student groups) acting in violation of this alcohol policy will be referred to the Office of the Dean of Students, the Office of Student Engagement and Leadership Development and/or the Office of Student Conduct for disciplinary action. All discipline involving students will be handled in accordance with the Chancellor's Executive Order 1098, Student Conduct Procedures for the California State University. Copies of these procedures are available in the Office of the Dean of Students and the Office of Student Conduct. In addition, alcohol related violations of the Business and Professions Code, Penal Code, or other state laws and/or local ordinances will be forwarded to the proper authorities.

The event manager is responsible for handling suspected violations of this policy by invitees, contracted workers, visitors or guests on University property and at University functions.  The University Police Department and/or appropriate local law enforcement are responsible for handling suspected violations of the law.

12.10 Sanctions

In addition to the foregoing, the following sanctions may be imposed for violation of this policy by individuals, students, student organizations, or departments.

12.1.1 Sanctions for Individuals

    • Restitution for any damages resulting from the conduct of the violator;
    • Violators may be required to go through an alcohol education program or other alternative educational sanction; and,
    • The University maintains the right to forward possible violations of federal or state laws, local ordinances, and University regulations, to the proper authorities through the University Police Department

12.1.2 Sanctions for Student Groups/Organizations:

    • Probation for a specified period of time;
    • Restitution for any damages that result from the conduct of the violator;
    • Freezing of funds, if any are available;
    • Report of violations to the national headquarters or offices of the organizations, if such exist;
    • Removal of officers from office; and,
    • Loss of University recognition and access to campus support services.

12.1.3 Sanctions by Department

    • Student Affairs departments or administrative units (e.g., Student Housing and Residential Life or Athletics), or Student Life programs (e.g., Greek Letter Organizations and other student organizations and clubs), may impose additional sanctions for conduct in violation of policies established by that department or administrative unit as well as violations of the Campus Alcohol Policy.

12.20 Exemptions to Sanctions

Individuals who report being the victim of a crime while under the influence of alcohol shall not have disciplinary action taken against them for alcohol consumption.

13.00 Prevention & Assistance Programs

The University provides a variety of services to prevent and address alcohol-related concerns. Educational programs and activities include residence hall education programs, participation in National Collegiate Alcohol Awareness Week, staff and faculty education, and incorporation of alcohol education into the curriculum. Educational resources are available to all members of the campus community through the Campus Health Center and the Personal Growth and Counseling Center. The University supports a variety of campus organizations and activities that promote alcohol-free experiences. All members of the University community are encouraged to participate in relevant alcohol education and awareness activities.

The Personal Growth and Counseling Center provides counseling and referral for students with alcohol related concerns. In addition, consultation is provided to faculty, staff, or students concerned about a student's well-being. However, medical or counseling information regarding a specific student cannot be divulged.

The Employee Assistance Program provides counseling and referral for faculty, staff, and administration regarding substance use concerns. Employees should consult their health care benefit plan to determine coverage for off campus services.

14.00 Treatment Programs & Services

Students in need of assistance due to alcohol related problems may be referred to alcohol education activities, counseling, and/or community agencies. Such activities and assistance may be available through existing University entities such as the Campus Health Center and the Personal Growth and Counseling Center or they may be offered in conjunction with community-based alcohol programs.

Employees in need of assistance due to alcohol related problems may be referred for assistance from campus services such as the Employee Assistance Program or to community agencies.

15.00 Continuous Renewal

This policy shall be reviewed five years from its effective date to determine its effectiveness and appropriateness.  This policy may be reviewed before that time as necessary.

s/President Eduardo M. Ochoa

Effective Date: July 26, 2022

Certification of Process

Reviewed by: Policy Facilitation Team, Human Resources, Student Affairs Leadership Team, Administration and Finance, University Development, Otter Promise, University Foundation, University Corporation at Monterey Bay, Associated Students, Academic Senate Executive Committee, Educational Planning and Policy Committee, Legal Counsel, and Provost.