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The following information is intended to help students proactively avoid some of the more common violations of the Board of Regents Student Conduct Code.
How to avoid violating the Student Conduct Code:
Driving While Impaired (all students)
Did you know?
- There are multiple factors involved in the charge of Driving While Impaired. Due to laws being affected by legislative sessions, check here for the most current law.
- Minnesota law also states you cannot have a drop of alcohol in your system and drive if you are under the age of 21
- In the last 2 years, nearly 40 students were cited for drinking & driving. The impact experienced by these students includes: nights in jail, lost jobs, transportation challenges, financial hardship (including legal bills), difficult conversations with parents and/or significant others
- The Office of Student Conduct & Conflict Resolution is notified of citations, even if you’re cited off campus
- Being under the influence of drugs other than alcohol can also result in a DUI (even prescription and over the counter medications count)
- Check out this helpful information from the Minnesota Department of Public Safety: DWI Consequences
How do you avoid this?
Don’t drink alcohol or use other drugs if you agree to be the designated driver
Don’t drive if you know you’re going to drink or use other drugs, including marijuana. Many students cited for DUI share that their original plan was to take a taxi, but then they did not feel drunk and decided to drive instead.
- have a designated driver
- have a taxi/Lyft/Uber get you to your destination so you aren’t tempted to drive home
- bulldog taxi is ½ off with your Student ID
- take the bus – this allows you to travel with a larger group of friends in a cost effective way.
No need to have cash on hand for the DTA (Duluth Transit Authority). Students are automatically assessed a $12.50 fee each semester which provides unlimited rides. UMD students registered for six or more undergraduate credits, as well as most graduate students, may jump on the bus, swipe their UCard and ride! Those students who are not assessed the $12.50-semester fee may opt-in by clicking Purchase your DTA U-Pass. The student fall semester pass is valid July 1 - December 31; the student spring semester pass is valid January 1 - June 30.
Keep things in perspective:
- the cost of a taxi ride is a minimum of $5 (possible cost from UMD to Canal Park is around $15) http://www.duluthmn.gov/city-clerk/taxi-cab-rates/
- the cost of a bus ride with your UMD student ID: free
- the cost of a bus ride without your UMD student ID: $1.50 cash
- the cost of DUI: depends on the case, but the cost will likely exceed $5000, plus loss of driving privileges
Know the law:
- Minnesota Driving Under the Influence: DUI Law
- refusal to provide the requested sample (usually breath) moves a DWI charge up a degree (that’s bad): see Implied Consent Law (refusal to submit to chemical test crime)
Social Host (off campus students)
How many people does it take to get a social host citation?
- You could have just 3 people (1 who is underage), who may be roommates, & alcohol only needs to be “available” to the underage person.
- Why do some cities have this ordinance?
- “Prohibiting underage consumption acts to protect underage persons, as well as the general public, from injuries related to alcohol consumption.” See the entire ordinance under Chapter 8 - Beverages: Sec. 8-29.5
- To promote better relationships between colleges and universities & the community in general
How can this impact you beyond the citation?
Most landlords have stipulations in the lease related to this ordinance so…
- You may receive a fine or your security deposit may be retained.
- Multiple violations may end in eviction since your behavior impacts your landlord's ability to keep their rental license, making their rental property a financial burden for them. Finding a rental after an eviction will be much more challenging than finding your first place.
- Once you’ve upset your neighbors, it can be hard to repair that relationship.
- Frustrated Neighbors are more likely to call the police, less likely to help out when you need assistance, and at times, they complain about students as a whole, negatively impacting UMD’s image.
Disturbing the Neighborhood (off campus students)
The primary difference between the Social Host and Disturbing the Neighborhood ordinances is that there need not be any underage drinkers present for you and your roommates to be cited for Disturbing the Neighborhood.
- Disturbing the neighborhood is Chapter 34 - Offenses -- Miscellaneous: Sec. 34-5
- Disorderly conduct is Chapter 34 - Offenses -- Miscellaneous: Sec. 34-6
How can you avoid this?
- Be proactive – introducing yourself to your neighbors is a good way to start building a respectful relationship
- Let them know that you’ll take your neighborly responsibilities seriously and that you plan to be respectful of their time and space
- Find out if they would like to exchange contact information
- Offer to assist them in any way you are willing and able
- Invite them to contact you if any concerns arise
- Recognize that if you’re drinking alcohol, your ability to self-moderate your own noise level becomes impaired early on (for most people, judgment is impaired at a BAC of .06)
FAKE ID (all students)
Whether a fake ID is used to purchase alcohol or merely to enter an establishment that requires you to be 21 or older, here are the legalities to consider before buying, making, or possessing one:
There are two Gross Misdemeanors (higher level law violations):
- Making a counterfeit driver’s license or Minnesota ID card
- Using someone else’s name and date of birth when asked by a police officer
These are Misdemeanors (lower level law violations):
- Using a fake name or date of birth or otherwise lying to a police officer *notice the difference between this and the violation that’s a Gross Misdemeanor!
- Using someone else’s driver’s license or ID as your own
- Allowing someone else to use your driver’s license or ID as their own
- Having any fake or altered driver’s license or Minnesota ID card
When thinking of using, making, or possessing a fake ID, consider how a future employer might view this situation if you get caught. It’s likely that they’ll become aware of the matter through a background check.
Theft: shoplifting, stealing on the job, etc. (all students)
Some students are on a tight budget. Many times in conduct meetings, this is the reason given for a theft charge. Whether an item is needed or just wanted, theft in any form is a crime that will need to be explained to future employers, graduate, law, or medical schools.
Things to consider:
- As an adult, your choices impact you now, much more than as a juvenile.
- Peer pressure can be challenging but how you handle it says volumes about your character. Seek counseling if you need support or ideas on how to manage this.
- An item costing one penny is the same charge (degree of theft) as something that costs $499. A shoplifting charge will cost over $150 in court costs and can also harm your career prospects.
- If you’re working, most employers have policies on old or damaged goods. It is usually considered theft if you consume food or beverages at work if you didn’t pay for them, even if the items were going to be thrown out.
Things you can do:
- Budgeting is a challenge but it’s important to learn to manage your money intelligently.
- Is the item something you really need or just something you want? If it’s a need, there are resources for you:
- Food shelves are available to students in need, including Champs Cupboard (on campus – Kirby Plaza 245)
- Champs closet is also available if you are job hunting and need different clothes for interviews. There may be other clothing options also, so check for current offerings.
- UMD Live Like a Student (LLAS) educates students on the topics of budgeting, borrowing, and credit. Increase your confidence and decrease your financial stress with the Financial Peer Mentor Program (FPMP) or free LLAS resources!
- If you are having truly significant financial challenges, you may want to visit Student Financial Assistance, located at One Stop Student Services in 23 Solon Campus Center. This office is open 8:00 a.m. - 4:30 p.m., Monday-Friday, with no appointment necessary, except on Fridays from 8:30 a.m.-10:00 a.m. You can request personal financial counseling, to include a review of your current dependency status as well as access to any emergency funding that may be available.
- Also, there are free online budgeting resources like mint.com, budgetpulse.com, and apps like Daily Budget and Spending Tracker (please note, some of these resources link directly to your bank accounts)
What if you’ve already been cited? (all students)
- Think through why this happened. If you’re blaming someone else, or feel you’re “just unlucky”, it might be helpful to consider the following: Why were you where you were, when you were, and doing (or not doing) what you did? Taking the time to reflect on choices you made can help you have good conversations with a judge, a hearing officer, your parents/significant other and can help you learn more from this experience.
- Attend your conduct meeting with your hearing officer. Avoiding this meeting is not beneficial to you or your learning from this experience.
- Consider your legal options:
- Talk with someone with legal expertise, a support person, and do some research online (but as always, do not believe everything you read: know the source and its credibility)
- Pay the citation or schedule your court appearance before the deadline (you may request a court date if you wish to contest the charges or request an alternate outcome. Also, some charges require you to appear in court instead of paying a set fee).
Other great resources on campus for free (all students)
- Disability Resources helps with all kinds of challenges including alternate test taking formats if you qualify.
- Career services offer assistance in finding a good career/academic path for you and making sure your strengths are a good match for that path. *Some career assessments require a small fee.
- Counseling can talk with you about anything including, relationships, academic pressures, stress, alcohol/drug use, finances, and more.