TCU toughens its alcohol policy

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    TCU won’t be as forgiving to students who violate the alcohol policy beginning this school year.

    This year, TCU has changed its policy to more closely resemble the policies of other schools in the Big 12 and nationwide.

    David Cozzens, the associate vice chancellor for student affairs, said that the policy has been tweaked in two ways to better the health and safety of students.

    The first change to the alcohol policy is the number of alcohol violations a student can receive per year.

    Students used to be able to “restart the clock” every year, Cozzens said, and could receive a maximum of three violations per year.

    Now, the clock will not restart. Students can receive a total of three violations during their time at TCU.

    According to the TCU Student Handbook, depending on if it is the first, second or third offense, students may face a fee, have to attend a workshop, complete community service hours, or be subject to other disciplinary action.

    The second change is the Medical Amnesty policy.

    The new policy gives medical amnesty to the person who is calling for assistance on behalf of another individual who is experiencing an emergency, Cozzens said.

    In the past, medical amnesty was given to the person who needed help, but now, in compliance with other schools in the nation, medical amnesty will be given to the caller and they will not face any disciplinary action, Cozzens said.

    Cozzens said that many people see these things as a punishment, but that’s not the case.

    “It really is about health and safety,” Cozzens said.

    Sparkle Greenhaw, the director of TCU’s Alcohol and Drug Education Center, said that a small percentage of people are repeat offenders of the alcohol policy.

    Greenhaw said that 25 percent of students have one incident with alcohol or drugs, and of that 25 percent, 10 percent violate the policy a second time in the course of a year.

    According to TCU crime statistics, in 2012 there were 678 liquor law violations issued on campus.

    However, Greenhaw said the numbers are improving.

    “There was a slight decrease in alcohol violations from 2012-2013 to 2013-2014,” Greenhaw said.

    According to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, each year an estimated 1,825 college students between the ages of 18 and 24 die from alcohol-related unintentional injuries.

    In addition, about 696,000 students are assaulted by another student who has been drinking and 97,000 students are victims of alcohol-related sexual assault or date rape.

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