Senate Approves Alcohol for Events

Starting this semester, student clubs will be able to take advantage of a Student Senate bill that allows for organizations at Dickinson to serve alcohol to students over the age of 21 during approved group events.

Senate’s Vice President for Finance Alex Toole ’14 initially pushed the motion forward at the beginning of the Fall 2013 as part of a more over-arching goal to change Senate’s stance on alcohol. The motion was approved at the end of the same semester.

“I made it my goal this year to reform our handling of alcohol and our budget,” explained Toole. “We have a lot of cultural clubs on campus. We want to allow clubs to prove that they can be responsible with alcohol. It will be a learning opportunity and help drive the conversation about alcohol forward.”

Before this motion, Student Senate was not authorized to spend their budget on alcohol. Funding for alcohol-based events came from Dickinson’s Alumni & Student Engagement Committee, whose focus is more on hosting events for seniors and graduated students.

The motion now allows the Student Senate Finance Committee to allocate money for alcohol to groups that meet their approval process. According to Vice President of Student Finance Committee Austin Davis ’15, only events that can demonstrate a proper, theme-based need for alcohol will be approved.

Alcohol at club events will be served similarly to Campus Life approved events, such as Senior Club and Pints With Profs. Students of legal age will be given bracelets bearing a set number of tabs by event organizers after their Dickinson IDs have been approved. Students exchange these tabs at designated locations for either a glass of wine or a beer. Hard alcohol will not be served at Student Senate approved events.

Currently Student Senate plans to follow the standard drink limit for a Dickinson event, with students’ consumption restricted by the length event. The bracelets will have a tab for each hour the event is scheduled to have, with a maximum of four tabs allowed per bracelet.

Though money will be given through Student Senate, organizations will still be forced to follow Campus Life’s rules on serving alcohol at events.

“If a club violates the Campus Life rules [on Alcohol], Student Senate will penalize the clubs within senate,” said Davis. Penalization may include freezing of funds or other such measures. Additional punishment may be pursued by the school based on the nature of the infraction.

Though the motion is not yet well known, the Arts Collective has already secured approval to serve alcohol at an upcoming event.

“We want people to know this opportunity is out there for them and that we are trying to provide a beneficial service to the student body,” explains Davis.  

For more information on the new motion or on how to submit an application to serve alcohol at an event, please contact Student Senate at [email protected]