Cal Lutheran alcohol policy update

Melodie Truchi , Reporter

In September of 2021, reporter Taylor Love, who is now news editor, wrote an article on how California Lutheran University’s current alcohol policy which prohibits the drinking or possession of alcohol by students on campus grounds was set to be changed by January of 2022. Currently, no changes have been made to the alcohol policy.

President of Associated Students California Lutheran University Government (ASCLUG) Josh Gatison said that the alcohol policy was discussed, but required a large number of people to review before decisions could be made.

“What the resolution was saying was that it wanted to form a committee of students, staff, administrators, all that good stuff, of people who need to be at the table for those types of discussions to talk about the alcohol policy and work changes in that setting and capacity,” Gatison said. 

He was on that committee alongside two other members from ASCLUG, as well as Assistant Dean of Students and Director of Residence Life Chris Paul and Campus Safety Director David Hilke. Paul was contacted for an interview regarding updates but declined as she said she did not have any new information to offer. 

Gatison said they worked together to take a look at policies from different institutions nearby.

“Everyone at the table was super cooperative,” Gatison said.

Hilke answers how and if new safety measures will be implemented to reduce the risk of drunk driving.

“Campus Safety will collaborate with the Office of Residence Life and Student Conduct for staff training and educational opportunities for students,” Hilke said. 

Gatison made a point that a lot of elements went into developing the policy such as educational rules and guidelines for how much alcohol could be consumed. He said making sure the policy was done in time to train resident assistants was also important. 

Vice President for Student Affairs and Dean of Students Melinda Roper answers how alcohol amounts are going to be regarded if still up in the air. 

“If there is a change to the alcohol policy, this issue will be addressed. As is currently the case, the university is committed to fostering a safe and healthy educational environment that promotes student success,” Roper said. 

Gatison responds there was no pushback on the policy but that it took time to work out the details.

“Just a matter of working out the little kinks and making sure that we had everything we needed to make sure people could drink responsibility and adhere to state guidelines as well,” Gatison said. 

The new expected date for the alcohol policy to be effective is soon to come. The board of regents still needs to vote on the policy, and at the time of this article being written, there was no expected date for a decision.

“It is on track to hopefully get implemented by this semester. I would say expect some news pretty soon,” Gatison said. 

It is important to make sure all the bases were covered when creating this alcohol policy, even how under age students will feel. 

“If there is a change to the alcohol policy, the Residence Life staff will continue working hard to create a sense of community and belonging for all students regardless of their age,” Roper said.

Gatison predicts that the new alcohol policy implementations will be well received by students.

“We really think students are going to be supportive of this change,” Gatison said.