Columbia College Department of Athletics
(Reviewed and Revised July 2011)
Columbia College actively supports the physical health of its students and encourages a healthful living, study, and work environment. To this end, Columbia College is committed to providing an environment free from the abuse of alcohol and illegal drugs. All students are prohibited from using, selling, bartering, loaning, giving, procuring for or furnishing for another, keeping or transporting for sale, directly or indirectly, any illegal drug, drug paraphernalia, or alcoholic beverage while on campus or at a college-sponsored activity.
The Columbia College Department of Athletics further prohibits all student-athletes from possessing, consuming, using, selling, transferring or being under the influence of alcohol or drugs on school property or school grounds, on athletic road trips, at school functions, and 24 hours prior to or during athletic practices or competitions. The Department of Athletics also prohibits the abuse of alcohol, such as public drunkenness, by its student-athletes. Student-athletes are also not permitted to post pictures of themselves or others on social networking sites where alcoholic beverages are visible.
The Columbia College Department of Athletics supports this campus policy and has designed a Drug and Alcohol Policy for athletes on campus. The purpose of the Drug and Alcohol Policy is to prevent drug use and abuse in athletes, educate student-athletes on the dangers of drug use, identify student-athletes using drugs and alcohol through the use of testing, and to provide treatment and discipline if necessary.
This policy is not to be construed as a contract between the College and the student-athletes at Columbia College. However, signed consent and notification forms shall be considered confirmation of the student-athlete’s agreement to the terms and conditions contained in this policy and shall be a legal contractual obligation of the student-athlete. Columbia College reserves the right to update or change this policy at any time, and will notify athletes of any changes or revisions.
Drug education deters drug use and/or abuse. Drug education will be mandatory for student-athletes and coaches at least twice per year.
Drug education resources include the NCAA website (www.ncaa.org/health-safety) and the Dietary Supplement Resource Exchange Center (REC) website. The REC is a free, confidential source of information to inquire whether specific dietary supplements or medications are banned or contain banned ingredients. To access the site, go to www.drugfreesport.com. NCAA REC user name is NCAA Division 1 and password is ncaa1.
Columbia College relies upon the NCAA Banned Substance List for prohibited substances. However, the drug testing program at Columbia College is separate and distinct from the NCAA program. Columbia College may test for substances at different cut off levels than the NCAA program. Individuals are prohibited from use or attempted use, purchase, possession, manufacture, distribution, and/or sale of the following classes of drugs:
-Substances banned for specific sports
-Peptide hormones and analogues
Individuals are prohibited from the illegal distribution, and/or the acquisition of multiple legal prescriptions for the same injury or illness from multiple physicians, misuse of any prescription drug, or alteration of any drug prescription. Distribution of drugs includes sale of a drug, trading a drug for another item/drug, or giving their prescription to another person.
Any misuse of alcohol, including violations of the law while intoxicated, may result in corrective actions. A student-athlete will be subject to remedial guidelines if they receive a legal citation from a law enforcement officer for an alcohol violation, including but not limited to:
-Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol
-Public intoxication by drugs or alcohol
-Underage possession of alcohol
The legal use of alcohol is not permitted 24 hours prior to any practice or competition.
The use of tobacco products are prohibited by student-athletes in all sports during practices and competition.
Any student-athlete who is observed in the act of illegal drug or alcohol use, or is observed demonstrating the effects of drug or alcohol abuse by an athletic department staff member, college employee, or law enforcement officer will be subject to the consequences for drug and alcohol offenses detailed in this policy as well any consequences from the College.
Use of Supplements
Columbia College does not encourage the use of nutritional supplements. Supplements do not undergo federal government approval and are not tested for quality like prescription and over-the-counter medications. There is often little scientific research on these products. As there are minimal federal government labeling requirements for nutritional substances, some products may contain banned substances, which are not listed on the label.
All student-athletes are responsible for any substances that enter their body. Be aware that over-the-counter medicines, prescription medicines, and nutritional supplements may contain banned substances and may cause a drug test to be positive. Student-athletes should report all medications and supplements they are taking to the athletic trainer.
Coaches involved in the recruiting of student-athletes should ensure that prospective student-athletes are aware of the Drug and Alcohol Policy. Alcoholic beverages or other banned substances are not to be used during the recruitment process of any prospective student-athlete.
Types of Testing
Random Testing: Random drug testing will be performed throughout the school year. The drug testing schedule will be set by the athletic trainer with the approval of the athletic director. The athletic trainer or athletic director will notify the selected student-athletes of the time and place for the screening.
Subjects will be selected in a random process in which the probability of any student-athlete being selected is the same as the probability of another student-athlete being selected and in which the selection is made without the identity or characteristics of the individual being known. Athletes will be randomly selected by a computer database. The athletic trainer will forward rosters with name and sport only to Drug Free Sport. A computer program will then randomly select names for testing.
Reasonable Suspicion Testing: Student-athletes may be drug tested if there is reasonable suspicion of alcohol or drug use or abuse. Any Columbia College faculty or staff member may report certain signs, symptoms, or changes in behavior that may cause him or her to suspect drug or alcohol use. These faculty and staff members have a duty to report any suspicions to the athletic trainer or athletic director in writing. In addition, should a student-athlete attempt to avoid notification, either by avoiding calls from the athletic trainer or coach, turning off cell phone, skipping class, or leaving town, there may be reasonable suspicion to test.
Re-Entry Testing: All student-athletes who have tested positive for a banned substance must undergo re-entry testing and the results report as negative before the student-athlete is allowed to return to participation.
Follow-Up Testing: Student-athletes who test positive for a banned substance or self refer may be required to re-test at any time during her career in order to monitor if the athlete has refrained from further using banned substances.
- All student-athletes, including red-shirts, medical red-shirts, medical disqualifications, student-athletes who are academically ineligible, and team managers are subject to drug testing.
- Student-athletes selected for drug testing will be notified either by phone or in person by an athletic staff member the time and location of the test with at least 1 hour notice but less than 24 hours notice. The athlete will sign a Drug Testing Notification Form acknowledging the date, time and location of the test. The athlete must then show up to the collection site, within 15 minutes of their scheduled test, or risk a positive test.
- The drug screening shall consist of the collection of a urine sample from the student-athlete under the supervision of a trained collector from Drug Free Sport. The sample will be provided under direct observation assuring the integrity of the specimen. Each urine sample shall be analyzed for the presence of banned substances in a SAMHSA approved laboratory.
- Drug testing results will be held confidential to the general public. Positive results will go to the athletic trainer who will then forward them on to the athletic director. The head coach, residence life staff, and/or counseling staff may also be notified of positive results. Any results will be held confidential to the public unless required by court proceeding.
- A positive test is defined as a urine sample revealing the presence of one or more banned substances. In addition, a student-athlete who does not show up for their scheduled test, is more than 15 minutes late for their scheduled test, or does not follow collection protocol as determined by the trained collector, will also have a positive test. Any attempt to substitute, manipulate, mask, or intentionally dilute a urine specimen will also be treated as a positive test.
Consent to Test
Each year all student-athletes and team managers must sign the current Intercollegiate Athletics Drug Test Acknowledgement and Consent Form before attending any team practice or participating in any intercollegiate competition. Failure to complete and sign the consent formwill result in the student-athlete being prohibited from attending or participating in team practices and intercollegiate competitions and may result in the student-athlete losing any athletic scholarships or aid she may be receiving.
Athletic Department Consequences
1st Offense: A positive test will result in a suspension from all athletic competition and travel for 50% of the total sport season. All suspensions are rounded up to the nearest game. If the student-athlete is unable to complete the suspension due to the end of the season, the suspension will carry over into the next season. This also applies in the event of an off-season test. If the student-athlete is unable to participate due to injury or any other reason the suspension will be served once the student-athlete is cleared for participation.
Suspensions by Sport: Volleyball (28) = 14 date suspension
Soccer (18) = 9 game suspension
Basketball (30) = 15 game suspension
Softball (28) = 14 date suspension
Tennis (24) = 12 match suspension
At his or her discretion, the Head Coach may permit the student-athlete to attend practices and team meetings during this suspension period.
In addition, all athletic-related financial aid could be withdrawn at the close of the academic year for the remainder of the student-athlete’s career. A parent will be notified that their daughter has violated the Drug/Alcohol Policy, regardless of the age of the student-athlete. The student may also be required to attend an initial meeting with a school counselor for which future treatment sessions and counseling sessions may be required at the student-athlete’s expense.
2nd Offense: Immediately upon notification of the second positive test result, the student-athlete will be removed from all athletic participation. All athletic-related financial aid will be withdrawn at the close of the academic semester for the remainder of the student-athlete’s career. A parent will be notified that their daughter has violated the Drug/Alcohol Policy, regardless of the age of the student-athlete.
Exceptions and Appeals
Medical Exceptions: Columbia College recognizes that some banned substances are used for legitimate medical purposes. Accordingly, Columbia College allows exceptions to be made for those student-athletes with a documented medical history demonstrating a need for regular use of such a substance.
Student-athletes are required to inform the athletic trainer of all medications taken. In order to qualify as a proper notification, the student-athlete shall provide a letter from his/her physician that shall contain information as to the medical history, diagnosis, and treatment plan--including medications and dosage information--to be maintained in the student-athlete’s medical records. In the event a student-athlete tests positive for a banned substance, the athletic trainer in consultation with the team physician will review the student-athlete’s medical record to determine whether a medical exception should be granted. Exceptions may be granted for substances included in the following classes of banned drugs: stimulants, beta blockers, diuretics, and peptide hormones.
Self-Referral: Any student-athlete who, upon being notified for selection of drug testing, admits to the use of banned substances, will still be required to take the drug test. This will result in disciplinary actions regardless of the test result. The student-athlete may be required to attend an initial meeting with a school counselor for which future treatment sessions and counseling sessions may be required at the student-athlete’s expense. In addition, the student-athlete will be suspended from all athletic activities for 25% of the total sport season. The student-athlete may only self-refer one time in their athletic career. A positive test will result in parental notification of a violation of the Drug/Alcohol Policy.
Testing Appeals: Student-athletes who test positive may, within 24 hours following receipt of the notice of the positive test, contest the finding. Upon the student-athlete’s request for additional testing of the sample, the athletic trainer will formally request the certified laboratory to re-analyze to reconfirm the original positive finding. The student-athlete may choose to be present (traveling at their own expense) for the re-analysis at the laboratory. If the student-athlete does not wish to be present but desires to be represented, arrangements will be made for a surrogate to attend. The student-athlete or surrogate will attest to the sample number prior to the laboratory conducting the re-analysis. The student-athlete or surrogate will not be involved with any other aspect of the analysis of the specimen. Re-analysis findings will be final. If the re-analysis test is negative, the first drug test will be considered negative.
Sanction Appeals: Student-athletes who test positive will be entitled to a confidential hearing with the Appeals Committee prior to the imposition of any sanction. The Appeals Committee will be chaired by the athletic director and will include the head coach, athletic trainer, and student life representative. Requests for such a hearing must be made within 24 hours of the notification of the positive test result. Requests must be made in writing and received by the athletic director. This hearing will allow an opportunity for the athlete to present their case and must occur within five business days of the request. The decision made by the Appeals Committee regarding the sanction to be imposed will be announced within 3 business days and will be considered final.
For More Information
Contact the athletic trainer for information or questions
regarding drug testing, education, and counseling or medications
and nutritional supplements.