Academic Catalog

Substance Use and Abuse Policy

Aspen University prohibits the illegal and irresponsible use of alcohol and other drugs. The University will strictly enforce federal, state, and local laws, as well as its own alcohol and drug policies and procedures which support these laws. It is the responsibility of every member of the University community to know the risks associated with the use and abuse of alcohol and other drugs and to assist the University in creating an environment which promotes student success.

Aspen University is obligated to observe and abide by the laws of the state of Arizona regulating alcohol and drug abuse and to safeguard those persons whose rights and safety are threatened by such substance abuse. Because Aspen is primarily an online institution, each student is further obligated to observe and abide by the laws of the state in which they participate in the University’s online education forum. For those students attending the educational facilities at one of Aspen's instructional sites, substance abuse laws in those states govern them additionally. Violation of these policies is a serious Code of Conduct offense and misuse or abuse of substances may result in disciplinary proceedings with potential sanctions including, but not limited to, expulsion from the University.

The University encourages students who believe that substance abuse is having an unfavorable effect on their every-day life, who believe they have a substance abuse problem, or who believe a fellow student has a substance abuse problem, to seek assistance from the following alcohol and substance use and abuse resources: Alcoholics Anonymous (https://www.aa.org), Narcotics Anonymous (https://www.na.org), Al-Anon (https://al-anon.org), and the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (https://www.samhsa.gov).

Alcohol Use and Abuse

  • Because Aspen has online students in all 50 states, it should be noted that the consequences for violating state laws relating to serving, purchasing, selling, or in any way providing alcoholic beverages to or for anyone who is under the age of 21 vary by state.
  • The serving, purchasing, selling, or in any way providing alcoholic beverages to or for anyone who is under the age of 21 is a misdemeanor violation under Arizona State Law that may result arrest, community service, or a fine.
  • Students are not permitted on University premises, including all locations used for educational experiences, while under the influence of alcohol.
  • Campus Locations: Underage students with alcohol on their breath or other signs of intoxication will be considered in violation of state law and may be subject to disciplinary procedures outlined in the Student Code of Conduct. The University reserves the right to notify the parent(s) of underage students who violate this policy and/or refer violations of the law to civil authorities for prosecution. Students participating in the BSN Pre-licensure program are subject to the Policy for Student Drug, Nicotine, and Alcohol Screening as outlined in the School of Nursing Pre-licensure Handbook.

Drug Use and Abuse

  • It is the University’s policy that the use, possession, cultivation, production, sale, distribution, transfer, manufacture and purchase of any illegal or controlled substance is unacceptable behavior and may be subject to disciplinary procedures outlined in the Student Code of Conduct. The University reserves the right to refer violations of the law to civil authorities for prosecution.
  • The use of prescribed medications by persons for whom the medications were not prescribed or not in conformity with the prescription, distribution or transfer of prescription medication to others, the misuse or abuse of prescribed or over-the- counter medications, and the misuse or abuse of inhalants are violations of this policy.
  • The University complies with all local, state, and federal laws governing illegal drugs, prescribed medications, and non-prescribed drugs and substances. Violations of local, state, and federal laws governing illegal drugs, prescribed medications, and non- prescribed drugs and substances can carry severe penalties, including but not limited to, imprisonment and substantial fines.
  • Students shall notify Student Disability Services if their medication has the potential to affect their performance and they require accommodation as a result. The prescribing professional must assure that the student is able to perform in a clinical setting, if appropriate based on the student’s educational needs. If a release cannot be obtained, the student may be suspended from the academic and clinical setting. This determination will be based on the student’s educational needs.
  • Campus Locations: The University reserves the right to notify the parent(s) of underage students who violate the policy and/or refer violations of the law to civil authorities for prosecution. Students participating in the BSN Pre-licensure program are subject to the Policy for Student Drug, Nicotine, and Alcohol Screening as outlined in the School of Nursing Pre-licensure Handbook.

Reporting and Resolution Standards for Suspected Use/Abuse of Alcohol or Drugs

  • It is the responsibility of all faculty, staff and peers to identify students’ behavior that leads to the suspicion of alcohol or drug use or abuse and to implement Code of Conduct procedures associated with the suspicion.
  • Students struggling with alcohol or substance abuse are strongly encouraged to seek counseling or other professional help.
  • Information shared by students with University professionals is considered privileged and subject to the standards of confidentiality and privacy established by applicable professional codes of ethics.