Drug and Alcohol Prevention Program


  1. Standards of Conduct
  2. New York State Law

Empire State University policy prohibits the unlawful possession, use or distribution of illicit drugs and the abuse of alcohol by students and employees on university property or as part of the university’s activities. The university has a wellness website which informs students about addiction and where to obtain assistance. In addition, sessions are offered at the student wellness retreat covering drug and alcohol prevention and recovery. Employees may seek additional information on the Office of Human Resources website (www.esc.edu/HR).

 B. Health Risks

There are significant psychological and physiological health risks associated with the use of illicit drugs and alcohol. Physical addiction, loss of control and withdrawal syndrome as well as serious damage to vital organs of the body can result from drug and alcohol abuse.

 C. Federal, State and Local Legal Sanctions

Articles 220 and 221 of the New York State Penal Law set criminal penalties for possession or sale of drugs considered harmful or subject to abuse. The seriousness of the offense and penalty imposed upon conviction depend on the individual drug and amount held or sold.  Penalties range from fines to prison terms of 15 years to life, depending upon the nature of the substance, the criminal act and the character of the crime. A list of possible penalties can be found in Appendix B at https://www.suny.edu/sunypp/documents.cfm?doc_id=440.   Federal Trafficking Law convictions also carry a variety of penalties which range from five to 30 years in prison and substantial fines. A listing of possible federal sanctions can be found at https://www.suny.edu/sunypp/docs/797.pdf

 D. Disciplinary Sanctions – Students

A student accused of possession/use of or distribution of alcohol or drugs will be subject to the university's Student Conduct Policy and Procedures as well as criminal sanctions under federal, state, and local law. University sanctions for those found responsible may include written warning, suspension or expulsion. Enforcing the Student Conduct Policy and Procedures is a shared responsibility between student affairs, faculty, student and public safety.