Alcohol Policy

The use of alcoholic beverages on University property and at University events must be consistent with University policy and applicable law. In the case of branch campuses or programs, use of alcoholic beverages must be consistent with the laws of the jurisdiction where University programs are located. All state and local laws regarding alcohol are also University rules. Off-campus conduct related to alcohol that violates the law also violates University policy. The following is a summary from Washington state statutes of some important points related to the use of alcoholic beverages:

  1. A person must be 21 years of age to acquire, possess or consume any liquor (alcohol, spirits, wine and beer)
  2. It is a violation of state law for any person under 21 years of age to purchase or attempt to purchase alcoholic beverages
  3. It is a violation of state law to sell alcohol to a person under 21 years of age, as well as to provide alcohol to any person who is underage
  4. It is a violation of state law to misrepresent age and to use false or forged documents (such as a driver’s license from any state) to obtain alcohol

Alcohol provided to students by their parents is prohibited on campus and in University residential facilities except as it relates to specific upper-division housing. Students in the presence of others improperly using alcohol may be held accountable for not taking appropriate action.

The University reserves the right to confiscate, retain and dispose of/destroy any and all alcohol and related paraphernalia regardless of value or ownership. Paraphernalia is defined as alcohol containers of all kinds, posters, promotional items and items used to facilitate drinking such as beer steins, shot glasses, and beer pong tables.

Drinking that is dangerous or disruptive, over-intoxication and public drunkenness, regardless of age or where the alcohol was consumed, is inappropriate and is not an excuse. For those under 21 years, consumption of alcohol off- campus is a violation of the University’s alcohol policy.

The following two sections apply specifically to Gonzaga University’s Spokane campus.

On-Campus Gonzaga-owned property and buildings:

  1. University regulations do not permit the possession or consumption of alcoholic beverages in common areas (both interior and exterior) except in cases specifically approved by, and registered with, the Student Development Office, and that comply with state and local laws.
  2. Requests for special events must be reviewed and authorized by the Vice President for Student Development or their designee, subject to Washington State Liquor Control regulations. Individuals who sponsor special events involving the serving of alcoholic beverages must be 21 years of age and must abide by all state and local regulations.
  3. Organizations or individuals sponsoring any event at which alcoholic beverages are served or present:
    • Are responsible for ensuring laws and University regulations governing the provision and consumption of alcoholic beverages are upheld.
    • Must arrange to serve non-alcoholic beverages and food appropriate to the occasion.
    • Must arrange for a responsible bartender to coordinate serving. Choice of bartender is subject to review and approval by the Student Development Office.
    • Must fulfill all requirements listed by the Vice President for Student Development Office.

Alcoholic beverages in University owned residential facilities

The use of alcohol is prohibited in some cases and regulated in others as described below:

  1. Possession or consumption of alcohol in common areas, both interior and exterior, of all residential facilities is prohibited.
  2. Residential facilities reserved for lower-division (first and second year) students
    • Students of any age and/or their guests of any age may not consume alcoholic beverages at any time in lower division residence halls. The use, possession, distribution, sale or display of alcoholic beverages and alcohol paraphernalia, including possession of empty alcohol containers, is prohibited.
    • Should a violation of the alcohol policy described in #1 arise in individual rooms, student residents will be confronted by University officials and held accountable for their actions and the actions of those present in the room, even when not consuming alcoholic beverages personally.
    • Empty containers may be considered evidence of consumption/possession of alcoholic beverages.
  3. Residential Facilities reserved for upper-division (third year and above) students
    •  Residents of individual rooms and apartments on campus and University owned off-campus apartments and houses are responsible for ensuring that University policy is upheld at all times with regard to alcoholic beverages.
    • The possession and/or consumption of alcohol shall not infringe upon the privacy, peace, and rights of others.
    • Should alcohol-related problems arise in individual rooms, student residents will be confronted by University officials and held accountable for their actions and the actions of those present in the room, even when not consuming alcoholic beverages personally.
    • In individual rooms, suites, or apartments in any residential facility maintained by Gonzaga University, mass quantities of alcoholic beverages are prohibited, regardless of the resident’s age. This includes, but is not limited to such things as kegs, multiple cases of beer, and stocked bars.
    • Beverages must be consumed within the confines of the apartment unit or house and are prohibited on balconies, stairways, parking lots, grounds, patios, porches and other common areas.
    • Residents are encouraged to refrain from having under-aged guests over while consuming alcoholic beverages to avoid the appearance that they may be distributing such beverages to under-aged people.
    • Any apartment unit or house that has an under-aged resident is considered “dry” until all assigned residents are at least 21-years old. This means it is prohibited to consume, possess, distribute, display or otherwise use alcoholic beverages and includes possession of empty containers.
    • Partying that becomes detrimental to the community is inappropriate.
    • Equipment or supplies used in drinking games or to promote excessive drinking (e.g., beer pong tables) are prohibited.

Violations of the alcohol policy will be enforced pursuant to the Student Code of Conduct. Individuals, student groups, or organizations that violate any of the alcohol regulations will be held accountable and may lose the privilege of sponsoring future events as well as be subject to disciplinary actions by the Student Development Staff. Students who violate state and local laws or University regulations concerning alcohol usage may be required to attend an alcohol education class and may be subject to Student Code of Conduct procedures and sanctions. Egregious violations of the alcohol policy may receive enhanced disciplinary follow-up. These violations include, but are not limited to, possessing or consuming mass quantities of alcohol and/or abusive consumption of alcohol. Some examples of "abusive consumption" are situations that involve: requiring medical response, transport, or hospitalization; blackouts; disruption to the community; impacting University operations, such as Security and Residence staff duties.

Last Updated: 8/21/15