Despite prior warnings, some students had their first taste of alcohol violations before ever stepping foot in a classroom.There were six on-campus alcohol violations since the first day of move-ins, but Sparkle Greenhaw, associate director of alcohol and drug education, said this is not an unusual occurrence.
“Just as soon as students get back on campus, we start getting alcohol violations,” Greenhaw said. “The majority of violations come from first-year students.”
Chris Sewalish, the director for Milton Daniel Hall said, “This is their first time to be without their parents so it’s not unusual for students to get alcohol violations.”
As soon as TCU opened its doors for housing move-ins, all incoming freshmen received the student handbook and were reminded about the alcohol policy when they checked in, at orientation and at the all-hall meetings.
Craig Allen, director of residential services, said the information was available and easy to understand, but problems start once students disregard their handbook.
“I read parts of )the handbook),” said Rachel Beebe, freshman mechanical engineering major. “I think people aren’t going to follow it if they don’t want to.”
The handbook stated that TCU follows state drinking laws and focuses on maintaining a healthy learning environment that will teach students to become responsible adults.
Greenhaw says the Alcohol and Drug Education Center is divided into two categories: clinical and alcohol prevention.
The clinical side provides individual student treatment, follow-up care and references to outside alcohol or drug treatment centers, and the prevention side trains resident assistants, frog camp facilitators and campus organizations, Greenhaw said.
Throughout the year, Allen said ADE counselors collaborated with residential services to hold campus-wide alcohol education programs and train students.
This year, Greenhaw said TCU sought to reduce violations by having separate freshmen and upperclassmen halls. She said she wanted to see whether drinking trends would change since both freshmen and sophomores must now live on campus.
Greenhaw said there were 310 alcohol violations last year, which was an average amount.
“TCU is a moderate to low-use campus regarding alcohol,” she said.
According to the handbook, students over 21 can drink alcohol in their rooms and at certain athletic events, but drunken behavior on campus will be reprimanded. For the students with their first violation, their penalties are 30 hours of community service or a $150 fine and an alcohol education class, according to the handbook.
“The good news is it’s probably one of the clearer policies,” Allen said. “When you’re under 21, you know what the deal is. I don’t know how it can be more clear.