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Alcohol, Tobacco and Other Drugs

Substance Abuse Prevention Mission

BSC is dedicated to ensuring that students have access to critical information about the potential negative consequences of alcohol and other drug use and/or abuse. Through innovative programming and campus-wide outreach efforts, the prevention team at BSC is committed to providing students with a safe and healthy environment.

The resources on this page can be a valuable help to those who are curious about what substance abuse prevention and intervention-based resources are available at BSC. To speak with a Counselor about alcohol, tobacco, and other drug use/abuse at BSC, please call 701-224-2449.

ND State Amnesty Law

Many collegiate underage students may be apprehensive to report an instance of risky binge drinking or concern of alcohol poisoning out of concern that they may get in trouble. It is important to note that North Dakota has a medical amnesty law in place for alcohol-related emergencies. This means that an underage student who contacts law enforcement or emergency medical services on behalf of a student in need is immune from criminal prosecution (ND Century Code: 5-01-08, provision 6).

Frequently Asked Questions
Is Bismarck State College a dry campus?
Yes! Consistent research has revealed that an alcohol presence on a college campus inhibits safety, academic success, and general well-being. Any presence of alcohol or intoxication on-campus will result in disciplinary measures.

Don’t all college students drink?
Contrary to what you might see in the media (including social media, where people tend to share the “highlight reel” version of their life which does not often accurately depict reality), fewer students than you might expect engage in drinking habits. According to a 2020 campus-wide survey of BSC, 27.1% of BSC students had not used alcohol at all during the past year, and 96.4% of BSC students did not believe that alcohol was necessary for a good time (NDSWAPS, 2020).

What happens if I get caught using alcohol, tobacco, or other drugs on-campus at BSC?
Any violation of our alcohol, tobacco, or other drugs policies will result in disciplinary measures. Sanctions will be dealt on a case-by-case basis, depending on the severity of the situation, history of alcohol/drug use, and history of violations at BSC. Sanctions may include:
  • Alcohol education class
  • Completion of an Alcohol e-Check Up to Go assessment
  • Loss of privileges
  • Academic hold
  • Eviction from housing
  • Suspension and/or expulsion from BSC
I am at a party, and my friend drank way too much. I’m concerned for his safety. What do I do?
The most prevalent signs of alcohol poisoning include:
  • Continuous nausea and vomiting
  • Confusion
  • Slurred speech
  • Irregular breathing
  • Aggression
  • Pale, clammy, or blue-tinged skin
If any of these symptoms are present, seek help immediately by calling 9-1-1. Due to the medical amnesty laws that govern ND, there is no legal risk for you to seek help. When in doubt, call 9-1-1.

Where can I go for help?
There is an abundance of local resources for concerns with alcohol, tobacco, or other drugs, here at Bismarck State College and in the Bismarck-Mandan community. Click on the “Resources” tab for more information.
Counseling/Treatment Referral Resources
BSC’s Counseling Center  can be utilized at any time for concerns with alcohol, tobacco, or other drug use and/or abuse. One intervention model that is utilized is known as the Brief Alcohol Screening and Intervention for College Students (BASICS). The program involves a total of two one-hour sessions and is designed to nonjudgmentally educate students on the potential negative effects of alcohol use and to elicit a change in their perception and behavior regarding alcohol and substance use/abuse. Contact Mystic Advising and Counseling Center for more information.

West Central Human Services offers walk-in behavioral and addiction evaluations, triage, and assessments on a sliding fee scale.

Heartview Foundation offers residential and outpatient addiction recovery services and education.

New Freedom Center offers addiction evaluations and residential and outpatient addiction treatment.

Teen Challenge is a faith-based residential recovery program.

Alcoholics Anonymous offers daily meetings throughout the Bismarck-Mandan community for those struggling with alcohol addiction.

Narcotics Anonymous offers virtual meetings for the Bismarck-Mandan community and contains quality educational material for those struggling with a narcotic addiction.

Al-Anon offers regular meetings throughout the Bismarck-Mandan community for those with loved ones struggling with alcohol addiction.

Psychology Today is an excellent way to find local addiction counselors, many of which work in private settings.

NDQuits serves over 3,000 North Dakotans a year with a high success rate by providing coaching and resources for tobacco cessation.
Laws and Policies
BSC Operational Procedure 917 Tobacco-Free Campus Policy
BSC Policy 918.2 Alcohol and Illegal Drugs
BSC Policy Procedure 918.2 Alcohol and Illegal Drugs

ND Drinking Laws
Individuals in the state of North Dakota must be 21 years of age to buy, possess and/or consume alcohol. Person(s) providing alcohol to individuals under the age of 21 violate state law and may be cited for contributing to the delinquency of a minor among other possible citations depending on the circumstances. There are other important state laws and local rules relating to alcohol including driving under the influence (DUI) and open container. Under North Dakota statute, for a first DUI offense, violators are fined at least $500 and are ordered to have an addiction evaluation. Individuals with blood alcohol levels over 0.16 will be fined up to $750 and may spend two days in jail.

Bismarck City Ordinance – Offenses Involving Minors