What You Need to Know About Drugs And Alcohol at San Francisco State University

San Francisco State University is committed to providing 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 the performance of assigned tasks. A 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 and Professional Development, and the Office of the Associate Vice President for Student Life & Dean of Students.

State laws regarding driving while under the influence of alcohol:

  • A police officer can confiscate the license of any driver suspected to be driving under the influence who refuses to take a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) test.
  • Anyone under 21 found in possession of alcohol can have their driver's license taken away, even if the underage person was not drinking, drunk, or driving.

Disciplinary Action

STUDENTS: The manufacture, distribution, possession, or use of illegal drugs or illegal use of alcohol may result in either probation, suspension, or expulsion from the University and/or the CSU system.

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 community may be subject to criminal prosecution for violation of applicable local, state, or federal laws.

Campus Resources

Health Promotion & Wellness, in collaboration with campus partners such as Campus Recreation, Residential Life, and Associated Students, provides Turn Up! Late Night Events on Thursday and Friday nights for students to hang out with their friends, meet new people, and have fun in a substance-free environment. Some fun events we provide include:

  • Game Night
  • Art Night
  • Movie Night
  • Trivia Night

For upcoming Turn Up! event details, go to http://wellness.sfsu.edu/events-workshops

Some questions to consider:

After drinking, have you ever engaged in unplanned sexual activity? All alcohol (beer, wine, and hard liquor) decreases one's ability to use good judgment and act according to their desires if consumed beyond capacity. People practice less safe sex when under the influence, more unintended pregnancies occur, more regretted sex and sexual assaults occur, and more sexually transmitted infections occur.

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 the ability to stay awake. Most stimulant drugs are short-acting (6-12 hours). As the drug wears off, withdrawal sets in. The user may become irritable, disinterested in the tasks at hand, need sleep, and can be agitated--just around the time you need to be at your best. In addition, methamphetamine is particularly hard on the body. It contains toxic substances and is extremely stressful on the heart.

How much can I drink and legally operate a vehicle? Many factors influence your blood alcohol level--such as body weight, sex, amount consumed, amount of food eaten, mood, body temperature, and previous drinking experience. As little as one drink may produce blood alcohol 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, and 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. 

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 on 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 the performance of academic and job-related responsibilities. In addition, short-term effects include slower than normal reaction time and increased heart rate. There are over 400 chemicals contained in marijuana. One joint contains 50% more tar than a cigarette.

Where To Go for Help

On-Campus (Confidentiality Assured)

For students:

For everyone:

Off-Campus - San Francisco

Meeting information for support groups: