Student Alcohol Policy

Alcohol Policy


Bryant University is committed to encouraging and facilitating responsible student decision making. The University recognizes that responsible decision making concerning alcohol is especially crucial to the health and safety of students, the campus community, university property, and the educational mission of the institution. Alcohol abuse among students has been shown to have serious negative effects on the abilities of students to reach their educational goals. While students have the primary responsibility for maintaining their academic progress, and for their overall health, Bryant University must, in all of its programs, services and activities promote and enforce the responsible use of alcohol on its campus and among its community members. To achieve this goal, as well as to monitor and regulate alcohol-related behavior, Bryant has adopted the following policies.

Summary of State and City Laws Concerning Alcohol

Rhode Island law regarding alcoholic beverages states that no alcoholic beverages can be sold, delivered or in any way given to a person under twenty-one (21) years of age. The possession of alcohol is also in violation of this State law. Anyone under the age of twenty-one (21) years who knowingly makes false statements as to his/her age in order to purchase or in any way procure alcoholic beverages shall be subject to appropriate penalties by the State of Rhode Island. This includes the use of falsified or false identification in order to procure alcohol in violation of the law. BRYANT UNIVERSITY IS OBLIGATED TO ABIDE BY AND ENFORCE THIS STATE LAW.

Open Container: Rhode Island General Laws (#31-27-2) and Smithfield City Ordinance (#3-4) prohibit open containers of alcohol in public areas, including outside, public lounges, hallways, etc.

Outdoor Gatherings and Alcohol: In accordance with Rhode Island State law and the Smithfield City ordinance prohibiting open containers of alcohol outside, alcohol is not permitted outside, with the exception of licensed permit areas during pre-approved major campus events.


While it is understood that employees of the Department of Public Safety and the Office of Residence Life encounter violations of these policies more often than others, enforcement of the alcohol policy and other policies contained in the Student Handbook are the responsibility of all members of the Bryant community.

Faculty members, administrators, staff members and students may report violations of the alcohol policy to the Department of Public Safety.

Alcohol Citations

Department of Public Safety (DPS) officers are authorized to issue alcohol citations when violations of the campus rules and state and federal laws pertaining to the possession and use of alcohol have been determined to have been violated.

 Alcohol Limits

Students who are 21 and over may have in their possession no more than the following amounts of alcohol at any time. These amounts are as follows:

  • 12 pack of beer
  • or 12 Flavored malt beverages/wine coolers
  • or a maximum of 750 milliliters of wine
  • or a maximum of 375 milliliters of distilled spirits.
  • Students may only possess one of the categories above at a time. (For example, students may not possess a 12 pack of beer and 750 milliliters of wine at the same time.)
  • Grain alcohol or equivalent substances are not permitted.
  • Beer and other alcoholic substances must be transported in the designated quantity. Transportation in packaging of quantities larger than designated is not permitted.
  • The University reserves the right to confiscate all of the alcohol in question if circumstances dictate so. Confiscated alcohol is disposed of; it will not be returned regardless of age.

Locations in which Alcohol may be consumed

  • Residence Halls
  • Students over the age of 21 may consume alcohol in the privacy of their residence hall bedrooms.
  • Students may consume alcohol in their suite/TH lounges/ common areas only when all residents of the suite/TH are 21 or over.
  • Students who are underage may not possess or drink alcoholic beverages.
  • No alcoholic beverages are permitted in Residence Halls 14, 15, & 16, or any other designated first-year area.
  • Licensed Facilities
  • The only entity permitted to sell alcohol on the Bryant Campus is the Campus Dining Services.
  • License holders on the Bryant Campus are responsible for ensuring that alcohol is not available to persons under the age of 21 or to those who appear intoxicated.
  • Proper Identification is required to be served alcohol.


There are a number of potential violations of the alcohol policy, including, but not limited to;

Under the age of 21:

  • Consuming alcohol
  • Possessing alcohol
  • Purchasing or attempting to purchase alcohol
  • Purchasing or attempting to purchase alcohol with false identification transporting alcohol
  • being in the presence of alcohol

General Violations:

  • Common containers are not allowed.
  • providing/serving alcohol to minors
  • selling alcohol to or purchasing alcohol for a minor
  • purchasing and transporting to campus unreasonably
  • high amounts of alcohol
    • open containers in public areas or outside
    • Significant impairment of functioning due to alcohol
    • encouraging or contributing to the intoxication of another person
    • drinking games or simulated drinking games, (defined as games that promote the rapid consumption of alcohol. This includes, but is not limited to: beer pong, flip cup, funneling, Quarters or altered board games.)
    • Possession or use of alcohol paraphernalia/drinking apparatus
    • Large alcohol gathering that exceeds space capacity or involves high risk behavior


In cases where large groups of students are drinking outside a specific living unit, that living unit will be assumed to have sponsored the gathering. Accordingly, residents of that living unit will be held responsible for an unauthorized gathering and for serving alcohol.

Residents of specific living units, e.g., townhouses, suites, etc., will be held responsible for violations of the alcohol policy occurring within their living units or sponsored by them. Students with multiple violations of these policies may evicted from the residence halls. Additionally, they may be suspended from Bryant University. Read your Student Handbook carefully. It notes that students who are evicted from the residence halls or suspended from school will receive no refund of tuition, room or board fees. Bryant University is serious about curbing alcohol abuse and disorderly behavior. Students who continue to violate our alcohol and any other policies face significant disciplinary action.

Parental Notification

The University has determined that parents of minors will be notified when there is a violation of alcohol and/or drug policy.


The Associate Dean of Students or designee may restrict a student with a significant prior conduct history or who has currently active sanctions from participating in Study Abroad or Sophomore International Experience opportunities.

Any drinking that leads to high risk behavior will be subject to additional sanctions. For example: Arrest, Significant impairment of functioning, behavior that is disruptive, destructive, disorderly, against the Bryant Guiding Principles/ Bryant Pledge, and/or any other evidence of problematic use.

Alcohol Education

As part of Bryant University’s comprehensive alcohol education strategy, we offer pre-college alcohol education, programming in the residence halls, on-going alcohol free events, and intervention services. The Bryant Community encourages all of its members to seek professional assistance when they have recognized an alcohol use problem. The Bryant Community can seek assistance from the following offices: Health Services, Residence Life, Counseling Services, Human Resources and Public Safety.

Campus Events Involving Alcohol

  • Campus events must be registered and approved by the Offices of Residence Life, Office of Campus Engagement, Department of Public Safety, and/or Conference Services.
  • Campus Dining Services will be responsible for securing all applicable alcohol sale permits for major campus events.
  • Consumption of alcohol is permitted only within the limits of a pre-approved area at the event site.
  • Non-alcoholic beverages must be available at the same price or less as the alcoholic beverage(s), and featured as prominently as the alcoholic beverage(s).
  • A reasonable portion of the budget for the event shall be designated for the purchase of food items.
  • No event shall include any form of drinking contest in its activities or promotion.
  • “All you can drink events” at which an unlimited amount of alcohol may be consumed for one fee, or special price promotions are not permitted.
  • Institutionally approved security personnel shall be present at all times during major campus events, as deemed necessary.

The sale of hard liquor will be by special permission only.

K. Alcohol and Campus Organizations/Departments/Activities

Alcohol may not be used at membership recruitment functions by any campus organization, including, but not limited to:

  • student organizations
  • fraternities or sororities
  • departmental clubs
  • special interest groups
  • faculty or staff professional groups, etc.

Alcohol may not be served, consumed, or otherwise present at athletic, Intramural or recreational sports events.