What you missed at SGA: alcohol policy resolution passes, winter break meal plan discussed

October 5, 2020

NKU%27s+Student+Union.

Billy Keeney

NKU’s Student Union.

SGA passed its first resolution of the semester at Monday’s meeting with a proposal to change the University’s current alcohol policy in housing. The resolution, which would allow beer and wine in University Housing for anyone aged 21 or older, was passed and will now be reviewed by a leadership team in Student Affairs for possible enactment.

A meal plan option for winter break was also discussed. 

Alcohol in University Housing

The second reading of the amended alcohol policy was discussed and approved by SGA members with representatives of Student conduct, rights and advocacy (SCRA) and University Housing in attendance. 

Current policy prohibits all possession of beer, wine and liquor in the residence halls unless allowed by university policy, regardless of age. Under this new policy, beer and wine would be allowed in residence halls; liquor would still be prohibited. 

Under the resolution, the allowance of alcohol in university housing does not apply to students who are under 21. Any underage student caught with alcohol or any student over 21 furnishing alcohol to minors will be in violation of the policy as well as state and federal laws. 

The resolution provided reasoning behind the amendment such as reducing “the risk of unhealthy levels of alcohol consumption, rapid consumption of alcohol, binge drinking for residents.” 

The resolution cited other nearby schools, such as Miami University and University of Dayton, that have similar policies and report moderate rates of binge drinking. 

The implementation and regulation would rely on University Housing and SCRA to enforce.

Violations of the new alcohol policy were also addressed in the resolution. If a student violates the new policy, a monetary fine (with no escalation for repeat offenses) will be determined and distributed by university officials.

The implementation and regulation would rely on University Housing and SCRA to enforce.

This resolution is a proposal to amend the current university protocol. It must be approved by a leadership team in Student Affairs, according to SCRA director and assistant dean of students Bob Alston.

According to Alston, the policy will be further discussed by himself, Housing Director David Berland and other senior members of Student Affairs. 

Given the amount of support by the student body that this resolution has and the fact that SGA’s advisors serve on the leadership team, Alston said he believes the resolution has a fair chance to proceed further.

“I don’t see a lot of real barriers to sort of moving forward on some of those pathways,” Alston said.

The only challenge that Alston foresees will be the addition of fines for violations. Student fines have to undergo a separate process to be approved and enacted. 

Timing will also be discussed further by the leadership team, but Alston said he hopes to have a definitive answer and possible enactment within this academic year.

This resolution was first introduced in March under former SGA president Jarett Lopez’s administration.

New meal plan for winter break

SGA faculty advisor Sarah Aikman presented an opt-in meal plan available for this upcoming winter break to receive SGA member feedback.

The plan will be an option for those who are staying on campus during the break where students can receive two meals a day, except Christmas and New Year’s Day, at Norse Commons. Students would receive an extra meal to-go on Dec. 24 and New Year’s Eve.

The weekly meal plan would cost $80 per week, according to Aikman. Once the option goes live after Thanksgiving Break, students would be able to select how many and which specific weeks. Students will have to pre-select the weeks before winter break begins.

NKU has never offered a meal plan for winter break, so Aikman presented the idea to SGA members to hear feedback. 

Minor feedback was given, and those senators who are staying on campus throughout winter break, such as SGA President Lauren Goodwin, said they would be interested in utilizing this service. 

After the meeting’s conclusion, Aikman said administrators will have to finalize the details with Chartwells Dining Service but students should expect the alternative to be announced soon. 

“We’ve also talked to FUEL NKU to see what their hours will be over the holiday break to see if students can also supplement their meals through FUEL NKU,” Aikman said.

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