Summary of Drug-Free Campus / Workplace Policy

The following summary of Walters State Community College's policy and penalties relative to controlled substances (illicit drugs) and alcohol, as required by the Drug-Free Schools and Communities Act Amendments of 1989, is being provided to each student enrolled at the college. As a student of Walters State, you are required to be knowledgeable of and comply with WSCC Policy No. 06:40:00 Drug-Free Campus/Workplace Policy, the applicable provisions of which are summarized below:

Standards Of Conduct

Walters State Community College employees and students are prohibited from engaging in the unlawful manufacture, distribution, dispensation, possession, use or being under the influence of illegal drugs or alcohol on the college campus, at off-campus facilities owned or controlled by the college or as a part of college sponsored activities. All categories of employees and students are subject to this policy and to applicable federal, state and local laws related to this matter.

Legal Sanctions Under Local, State, And Federal Law

Various federal, state and local statutes make it unlawful to manufacture, distribute, dispense, deliver, sell or possess with intent to manufacture, distribute, dispense, deliver or sell, controlled substances. The penalty imposed depends upon many factors which include the type and amount of controlled substance involved, the number of prior offenses, if any, whether death or serious bodily injury resulted from the use of such substance, and whether any other crimes were committed in connection with the use of the controlled substance. Possible maximum penalties for a first-time violation include imprisonment for any period of time up to a term of life imprisonment, a fine of up to $4,000,000 if an individual, supervised release, any combination of the above, or all three. These sanctions are doubled when the offense involves either: 1.) distribution or possession at or near a school or college campus, or 2.) distribution to persons under 21 years of age. Repeat offenders may be punished to a greater extent as provided by statute. Further, a civil penalty of up to $10,000 may be assessed for simple possession of "personal use amounts" of certain specified substances under federal law. Under state law, the offense of possession or casual exchange is punishable as a Class A misdemeanor; if there is an exchange between a minor and an adult at least two years the minor's senior, and the adult knew that the person was a minor, the offense is classified a felony as provided in T.C.A. S39-17-417. (21 U.S.C. S801, et. seq.; T.C.A. S39-17-417) It is unlawful for any person under the age of twenty-one (21) to buy, possess, transport (unless in the course of his employment), or consume alcoholic beverages, wine, or beer, such offenses being classified Class A misdemeanors punishable by imprisonment for not more than 11 months, 29 days, or a fine of not more than $2,500, or both. (T.C.A. SS1-3-113, 57-5-301). It is further an offense to provide alcoholic beverages to any person under the age of twenty-one (21), such offense being classified as a Class A misdemeanor. (T.C.A. S39-15-404. The offense of public intoxication is a Class C misdemeanor punishable by imprisonment of not more than 30 days or a fine of not more than $50, or both. (T.C.A. S39-17-310)

Health Risks Associated With the Use of Illicit Drugs AND/OR Abuse of Alcohol

Every drug, including alcohol, is a potential poison which may cause disability and death if it is taken incorrectly into the body, consumed in wrong amounts or mixed indiscriminately with other drugs. Drugs cause physical and emotional dependence. Drugs and their harmful side effects can remain in the body long after use has stopped. The extent to which a drug is retained in the body depends on the drug's chemical composition, that is whether or not it is fatsoluble. Fat-soluble drugs such as marijuana, phencyclidine (PCP), and lyseric acid (LSD) seek out and settle in the fatty tissues. As a result, they build up in the fatty parts of the body such as the brain and reproductive system. Such accumulations of drugs and their slow release over time may cause delayed effects weeks, months, and even years after drug use has stopped.

There are many health risks associated with the use of illicit drugs and the abuse of alcohol including organic damage; impairment of brain activity, digestion, and blood circulation; impairment of physiological processes and mental functioning; and, physical and psychological dependence. Such use during pregnancy may cause spontaneous abortion, various birth defects or fetal alcohol syndrome. Additionally, the illicit use of drugs increases the risk of contracting hepatitis, AIDS and other infections. If used excessively, the use of alcohol or drugs singly or in certain combinations may cause death.

Drug and Alcohol Counseling, Treatment and Rehabilitation Programs

College Health Clinic

The Campus Nurse provides confidential counseling to students and employees on drug and alcohol related problems. This service is furnished at no cost to students or employees. Referral services are also provided for professional counseling, treatment and rehabilitation programs that are available in the local community. The cost of these professional services is normally the responsibility of the individual concerned or the individual's insurance carrier. The Campus Nurse also coordinates the administration of the college Drug-Free Awareness Program.

Penalties and Sanctions

Appropriate action shall be taken in all cases in which faculty members, students or staff employees are determined to be in violation of the Drug-Free Schools and Communities Act Amendments of 1989 as implemented by this policy. Any alleged violation of the Act by a student of the cllege shall be reported to the vice president for Student Affairs. The circumstances surrounding the offense and the facts as determined by appropriate investigation will be fully reviewed prior to a decision on the action to be taken. Possible disciplinary sanctions for failure to comply with the provisions of this policy may include one or a combination of the following:

  1. Probation;
  2. Mandatory participation in, and satisfactory completion of a drug/alcohol abuse program, or rehabilitation program;
  3. Suspension;
  4. Referrals for prosecution;
  5. Expulsion;
  6. Other appropriate disciplinary action.

As a student of Walters State, you are required to be knowledgeable of and comply with the Drug-Free Campus/Workplace Policy, the applicable provisions of which are found in the WSCC student handbook at Drug-Free Campus


If you have questions or desire additional information concerning the provisions of this policy, please contact the vice president for Student Affairs.