What You Need To Know About Drugs And Alcohol At San Francisco State University

This is an archived copy of the 2016-2017 bulletin. To access the most recent version of the bulletin, please visit bulletin.sfsu.edu. Any changes will appear on our errata page.

San Francisco State University is committed to a safe and healthy environment for the campus community. The use of alcohol and other drugs should not interfere with the university's educational mission.

The university expects every student, faculty member, staff member, and administrator to be aware of and comply with all local, state, and federal laws regarding the unlawful possession, distribution, or use of illegal drugs and alcohol.

It is the policy of San Francisco State University that the unlawful manufacture, distribution, dispensation, possession, or use of illegal drugs on the university campus, or at any university-sponsored event off campus, is prohibited. No one may use illegal substances, or abuse legal substances, including alcohol, in a manner which impairs performance of assigned tasks. A more complete description of these regulations is contained in University Directive #89-12 (The Alcohol and Drug Policy) and University Directive #90-15 (Policy on Substance Abuse in the Workplace) which are available at Human Resources Office, the Office of Faculty Affairs, the Office of the Dean of Students.

State Laws regarding driving while under the influence of alcohol

  • An arresting officer can take the license from any driver suspected to be driving under the influence who refuses to take a blood alcohol concentration test.
  • Anyone under 21 found in possession of alcohol can have their driver's license taken away, even if the under age person was not drinking, drunk, or driving.

Disciplinary Action

STUDENTS: The manufacture, distribution, possession, or use of illegal drugs or illegal use of alcohol will normally result in either probation, suspension, or dismissal from the university.

EMPLOYEES: Those found to be in violation of university policy may be subject to corrective action, up to and including dismissal, or may be required, at the discretion of the university, to participate satisfactorily in an approved counseling or rehabilitation program. All members of the campus may be subject to criminal prosecution for violation of applicable local, state, or federal laws.

Consider the Following:

After drinking, have you ever engaged in unplanned sexual activity? All alcohol [beer, wine, and hard liquor] decreases people's ability to use good judgment and act according to their own desires if they've been drinking beyond their capacity. People practice less safe sex when under the influence, more unintended pregnancies occur, more regretted sex and acquaintance rapes occur, and more diseases are transmitted sexually.

Have you ever taken speed or stimulants (methamphetamine or prescription drugs such as Ritalin) to help you stay awake to meet a deadline? The initial effect of speed is increased alertness, increased sense of well-being, and ability to stay awake. Most uppers are short acting (6-12 hours). As the drug wears off, withdrawal sets in. The user is irritable, disinterested in the tasks at hand, needs sleep, and can be agitated--just around the time you need to be at your best. In addition, meth is particularly hard on the body. It contains toxic substances and is extremely stressful on the heart.

How much can I drink and still be legal on the road? Many factors influence your blood alcohol level--such as body weight, gender, amount consumed, amount of food eaten, mood, body temperature, and previous drinking experience. As little as one drink may produce blood levels greater than the legal limit. The safest and smartest approach is to ask a non-drinking friend to drive if you drink, or designate a driver who will not drink.

Do you use cocaine to give you an "edge" in your studies or at work? Most people start using cocaine because it makes them feel "more" something--more confident, more alert, more attractive, more intelligent, more energetic. But these effects of the drug last only a few minutes, and leave the user feeling worse than they felt before. This sets up a cycle of craving the drug to feel good again, and repeated use to avoid feeling bad. Eventually, not only do you lose your "edge," but you can't even stay in the game. Cocaine can cause dramatic changes in blood pressure, as well as heart and breathing rates. One-time, occasional use or using small amounts have all been known to cause breathing to stop, stroke, or death. Crack is an especially addictive form of cocaine.

Do you smoke marijuana to forget problems with your studies or work responsibilities? If your answer is yes, the drug may be working better than you think. Marijuana can disturb both the process of formation and storage of memory. Even occasional use can result in memory impairment. It can also adversely affect your ability to concentrate and pay attention to school and work assignments. With continued use, long-term learning problems can occur as well as a reduction in motivation. This can lead to a further decline in performance of academic and job-related responsibilities. In addition, short term effects include slowed reaction time and increased heart rate. There are over 400 chemicals contained in marijuana. One joint contains 50% more tar than a cigarette.

Do you use steroids to build your muscles faster during weight training? Anabolic steroids are basically synthetic male hormones that are often used to rapidly increase muscle mass. While steroids can contribute to faster muscle building when combined with weight training, they can also cause atrophy of the testicles and enlargement of the prostrate in men; in women, an increase in body hair and baldness may be seen. There are a number of other toxic side effects of steroid use including liver damage, and there is danger of HIV and hepatitis infection from the sharing of needles used to inject the steroids. The added muscle attributed to steroid use hardly seems worth the dangers.

In a recent study, 29% of SF State students who drink reported that they had missed a class because of drinking, 19% reported that they had fallen behind in school work, and 19% stated that they had done something that they later regretted. Nation-wide campus statistics suggest that alcohol is involved in:

  • 2/3 of all violent behavior
  • 1/2 of all physical injuries
  • 1/3 of all emotional difficulty among students
  • 30% of all academic problems
  • 75% of all motor vehicle accidents
  • 90% of date rapes on college campuses
  • 40% of all diseases transmitted sexually

Where To Go for Help

On-Campus (Confidentiality assured)

For students:

  • Prevention Education Programs/C.E.A.S.E., Student Services Building room 205, 338-1203 (resources & referrals) www.sfsu.edu/~cease
  • Counseling & Psychological Services, SSB 208, 338-2208
  • Student Health Center, medical appointments: 338-1719

For everyone:

  • Meetings of Alcoholics Anonymous, Narcotics Anonymous. Call C.E.A.S.E. for information regarding on- and off-campus meetings at 405-3953.

Off-Campus-- San Francisco

  • National Council on Alcoholism, 944 Market Street, 3rd Floor, 296-9900 ncadd.org
  • Bayview-Hunter's Point Foundation for Problem Drinkers, 1625 Carroll, 822-8200
  • Haight-Ashbury Free Clinic Drug Treatment Services, 529 Clayton, 565-1908 www.hafci.org
  • Mission Council on Alcohol Abuse for Spanish Speaking, 820 Valencia, 826-6767 www.missioncouncil.org
  • New Leaf (gay/lesbian/bisexual), 1853 Market, 626-7000 www.newleafservices.org

Meeting information for support groups: