Students who are involved with drugs are encouraged to seek assistance through the College health services, counseling services or other professional assistance. These services are completely confidential. Hamilton College is committed to the development and maintenance of a drug-free environment and, in accordance with the Drug-Free Workplace Act of 1988, will not tolerate the unlawful possession, use, manufacture, distribution or dispensation of a controlled substance in or on property owned or controlled by Hamilton College. Drug paraphernalia and water pipes of all kinds are prohibited.


Students found responsible for possession, use, or distribution of drugs will be subject to appropriate disciplinary action, which may include separation from the College.  While New York State allows adults 21 years and older to possess up to 3 ounces of marijuana, marijuana use, and possession is prohibited under federal law and is prohibited on the Hamilton College campus. The College will offer no protection or immunity from prosecution by police agencies.

Additional information regarding New York State’s laws on Cannabis may be found here.

Prescription Drugs

Selling or sharing of medication prescribed to an individual is prohibited by New York State law and Hamilton College.  

All Other Drugs

The unlawful manufacture, distribution, dispensation, possession, use, and/or sale of controlled substances or other illegal drugs is prohibited.  The Judicial Board will normally hear these cases and students found responsible will be subject to appropriate disciplinary action, which may include separation from the College.  

Additional information regarding New York State’s laws on drugs other than Cannabis may be found here.

New York State penalties for driving while impaired or intoxicated may be found here.

Health Risks Associated with Drug Use


Alcohol consumption causes a number of marked changes in behavior, including impaired judgment and coordination, increased incidence of aggressive acts, and impairments in higher mental functions, including the ability to learn and remember information. Very high doses cause respiratory depression and death. If combined with other depressants of the central nervous system, much lower doses of alcohol will produce the effects just described. Repeated use of alcohol can lead to dependence. Sudden cessation of alcohol intake is likely to produce withdrawal symptoms, including severe anxiety, tremors, hallucinations, and convulsions. Alcohol withdrawal can be life-threatening. Long-term consumption of large quantities of alcohol, particularly when combined with poor nutrition, can also lead to permanent damage to vital organs such as the brain and the liver.

Controlled Substances

The risks associated with the use of other controlled substances are also significant and potentially life-threatening. For additional information, please refer to: www.drugabuse.gov

Alcohol and Other Drug Counseling and Treatment Programs

In addition to services and referrals offered through the Hamilton College Counseling Center (315-859-4340) and Health Center (315-859-4111), the following services and sources of information are available in the surrounding community:

Additional Information and Referral Services:

The above information on alcohol and other drugs is presented in accordance with the Drug-Free Schools and Communities Act. (Adapted with permission from Drug-Free Communities: Turning Awareness into Action, by the Office for Substance Abuse Prevention, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 1989; and Complying with the Drug-Free Schools and Campuses Regulations: A Guide for University and College Administrators, by The Higher Education Center for Alcohol and Other Drug Prevention, US Department of Education)

  • Alcohol Crisis Center, 315-735-1116
  • Alcoholics Anonymous, 315-732-6880
  • Mohawk Valley Council on Alcoholism and Addictions, 315-733-1709
  • Insight House Chemical Dependency Services, 315-724-5168
  • Drug Abuse Information Line, 1-800-522-5353
  • National Institute on Drug Abuse, 1-800-662-HELP
  • Partnership for a Drug-Free America - www.drugfree.org/

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