Drug-Free Campus Policy

In accordance with the Drug Free Schools and Communities Act Amendments of 1989, Athens Technical College implemented a program to prevent the use of illicit drugs and the abuse of alcohol by students and employees. College standards of conduct clearly prohibit the unlawful possession, use, or distribution of alcohol, marijuana, a controlled substance, or other illegal or dangerous drugs on campus or as part of any student-sponsored activities.

College policies prohibit the possession or consumption of alcoholic beverages and illicit drugs on the campuses, in college facilities, or at college-related functions. College policies also prohibit students under the influence of alcohol or nonprescription drugs from appearing on the campuses, at clinical facilities, or at student-related functions and activities.

As noted in the Student Code of Conduct, the college will impose sanctions up to and including dismissal and referral for prosecution for the violation of these standards. The Office of Student Affairs at Athens Technical College assists students with drug- or alcohol-related problems by referring them to appropriate community resources designed to address these problems.

Alcohol/drug use and substance abuse

Much has been written in recent years about the health benefits of moderate alcohol use. Unfortunately, that information has also been viewed by some as permission to continue their ongoing abuse of alcohol. Likewise, while there are valid medical reasons to take legally prescribed drugs, it is not uncommon for an individual to lose control over their use of those medications and, in some instances, advance to such risk-taking behavior as seeking illegal drugs as substitutions.

Once an addiction begins, it can carry a host of additional issues, including the loss of self-control, judgment, motivation, memory, and the ability to learn. People who choose to abuse alcohol and/or drugs run the risk of incurring serious health problems such as high blood pressure, increased risk of cancer, heart disease, hepatitis, cirrhosis, alcoholism, drug addiction, brain damage, and, in extreme cases, sudden death. Additionally, individuals with substance abuse problems pose a serious risk to themselves and to others when they elect to drive under the influence.

If you or someone you know needs assistance or would like more information about what services are available in your area, please contact:

 

    Bob Ertzberer

    Counseling Coordinator

    Athens Campus - K614D

    706-227-7174

    rertzberger@athenstech.edu

    

Criminal sanctions

Federal law prohibits the possession, manufacture, or distribution of various controlled substances. Penalties for these offenses vary depending upon the severity of the convictions, but may include imprisonment of up to 40 years with large fines. Penalties double when the offenses occur within 1,000 feet of a postsecondary educational institution.

Georgia law states that public educational institutions shall, as of the date of conviction, suspend students convicted of any felony offense involving the manufacture, distribution, sale, possession, or use of marijuana, a controlled substance, or a dangerous drug except for cases in which the institution previously took disciplinary action against the students for the same offense. Such suspension shall be effective as of the date of conviction even though the educational institution may not complete all administrative actions necessary to implement such suspension until a later date, except for cases in which the institution previously imposed sanctions for the term, quarter, semester, or other similar period for which students were enrolled as of the date of conviction, students shall forfeit any right to any academic credit otherwise earned or earnable for that term, quarter, semester, or other similar period. The educational institution shall subsequently revoke any such academic credit granted prior to the completion of administrative actions necessary to implement such suspensions.

Georgia law specifies that college-sanctioned student organizations that, through its officers, agents, or responsible members, knowingly permits or authorizes the sale, distribution, serving, possession, consumption, or use of marijuana, a controlled substance, or dangerous drug in violation of state laws at any function shall have its recognition withdrawn. Furthermore, state laws also specify that the college must expel that organization from campus for a minimum of one calendar year from the year of determination of guilt.

The Georgia Penal Code prohibits the possession of alcohol by a person under the age of 21 or providing alcohol to such a person. State laws also specify fines for violators in the amount of $1,000 and a prison sentence of 12 months.

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