Executive Policy Manual

EP20 – Alcohol and Drug Policy

Revision Approved November 2, 2022

Washington State University by policy aims to eliminate alcohol and drug abuse and to educate the University community on relevant laws and consequences. This policy provides consistency and clarity on the permitted use and enforcement of alcohol laws and statutes on all WSU properties statewide.

In compliance with the Drug-Free Schools and Communities Act Amendments of 1989, the University has drug and alcohol abuse prevention policies and programs. WSU’s policy prohibits the unlawful possession, use, or distribution of illicit drugs or alcohol on University-controlled property. In addition, WSU complies with the Drug-Free Workplace Act of 1988. This program provides educational and training programs and prohibits the use of controlled substances in the workplace.

The University strictly enforces state of Washington laws regarding alcohol and does not tolerate the illegal use, possession, or sale of intoxicating beverages. Existing state laws enforced include, but are not limited to, those concerning the checking of identification cards, minors in possession, furnishing alcohol to minors, possession of open containers, driving under the influence, and exhibiting unruly or intoxicated behavior.

Consumption or possession of alcohol in public areas of any University-owned or -controlled property is generally prohibited except when those who are 21 years of age or older are participating in a sponsored event for which there is an alcohol license or banquet permit.

Serving alcohol is governed by the following specific policies:

  1. When WSU events are held at private venues, individuals may purchase spirits from private vendors.
  2. When private parties rent WSU facilities including those in the Compton Union Building, beer, wine, and distilled spirits may be served in accordance with state law.
  3. Alcohol will not be served at WSU events held at WSU facilities during regular business hours (8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday), except:
    1. Alcohol may be served at events and educational activities associated with and held at the Ste. Michelle Wine Estates WSU Wine Science Center, in accordance with all applicable laws and any required liquor licenses or permits.
    2. Alcohol may be served in connection with University-approved, instructor-supervised courses in areas including, but not limited to, viticulture/enology and hospitality, in accordance with all applicable laws and any required liquor licenses or permits.
    3. On NCAA intercollegiate football, basketball, soccer, and baseball game days, as follows:
      1. Beer, wine, and distilled spirits sales and service will begin no earlier than three hours prior to kickoff, tipoff, or first pitch, and will end no later than the end of the game. Plans for alcohol sales and service in all locations are subject to review and approval by the President or the President’s designee prior to initiation.
      2. Identification will be checked for everyone who is served or purchases alcohol at any University facility or event site and individuals who are 21 or older may be issued a wristband or other suitable designation that they are of legal drinking age. In the absence of such designation, identification will be appropriately checked for all purchases or service of alcohol. Any addition applicable laws and any required liquor licenses or permits will also be followed.

Additionally, WSU does not permit any form of broadcast or print advertising from spirit or beer companies in any of its facilities, including in the Fieldhouse prior to football games. This policy does not pertain to advertising in the student-operated newspaper, The Daily Evergreen.

Certain forms of promotion may be allowed upon approval from the Vice President for Finance and Administration. The use of the WSU Trademarks and logos in association with promotion and/or marketing of alcohol is strictly prohibited without submission to the WSU Trademarks office for approval.

Additional alcohol policies apply to current WSU students and are administered by the Center for Community Standards and by Cougar Health Services. For more information see:

Revisions:  Nov. 2022 (Rev. 107); Aug. 2022 (Rev. 105); Sept. 2019 (Rev. 86); Apr. 2019 (Rev. 84); Apr. 2015 (Rev. 60); Aug. 2012 (Rev. 50); Sept. 2011 (Rev 45); Apr. 2008 (Rev. 31); Oct. 2003 – new policy (Rev. 16)