Serving Alcoholic Beverages at Student Organization Events
Any student group that plans to make beer or wine available during an activity or event, with or without charge, is required to get approval for the activity or event from the Center for Student Programs located in 316 Leavey Center. Assistance in this process is provided by the staff of the Center for Student Programs. Review and approval of such plans will be based on the criteria outlined below.
The proportion of Georgetown students of legal drinking age, 21, is a fraction of the community, requiring innovative approaches to event planning and management. It is imperative that event planners demonstrate a thorough understanding of the risks and liabilities associated with serving alcoholic beverages and that they respect alcohol-related health issues when planning events.
II. Open Events
Open events are events at which alcoholic beverages will be available for purchase, included in an admission price, or included as part of a registration fee. Such events may be classified as small scale or large scale (see letter “K” below).
A. Supervision – The sponsoring organization must designate a person to supervise each event at which alcohol is served. This person is responsible for the management of the event and must be present at all times. The supervisor must be at least 21 years old and must be the person whose name appears on the liquor license. The president of the sponsoring organization must also take full and complete responsible for compliance with District of Columbia law and the provisions of the University’s alcohol policy, including ensuring that no one who is already intoxicated is served and no one underage has access to alcoholic beverages. The president of the organization and the supervisor are also responsible for ensuring that no alcoholic beverages are taken out of the designated location/area of the event.
In addition to the supervisor, the organization must have a university employee present. The university employee must be present at all times to monitor the organization’s compliance with District of Columbia law and the provisions of the University alcohol policy. Public Safety officers must be present at any event where alcohol beverages are served. The number of officers is determined by the Department of Public Safety based on factors such as the facility used, the number of participants expected, etc.
B. Identification – The organization must take adequate measures to confirm the identification and age of those wishing to drink. It is illegal to serve alcohol to or purchase alcoholic beverages for a minor. A Georgetown University picture ID and/or a valid Government issued ID will be required of any person wishing to consume alcoholic beverages. Information provided by the Registrar’s Office will be used for verification of proof of age. Wristbands will be applied immediately after proof of age is ascertained.
C. Guest – Procedures for inviting and identifying guests of Georgetown University students must be approved in advance by the Center for Student Programs, whose representative will review such request on a case-by-case basis. Guest identification procedures must be consistent with the risk management controls outlined here.
D. Publicity and Advertisement – All publicity for an event at which alcoholic beverages will be served must be reviewed and approved by a full-time staff member in the Center for Student Programs. Under no circumstances will the Center for Student Programs approve publicity that encourages the overindulgence of alcohol or promotes alcohol abuse. Furthermore, if alcohol is a part of the publicity at all, the publicity must also include other non-alcoholic beverages and food or snacks.
E. License – District of Columbia law requires that a license be obtained for the sale of any alcoholic beverages. Selling includes charging for admission, a registration fee, or any direct means of collecting money to fund the event. A District of Columbia Class “F” license is required for any event at which beer or wine will be served for a cost. The District of Columbia Class “F” license requires at least ten(10) days for approval and should be requested from the Alcoholic Beverage Regulation Administration 14 days in advance. The Board will not consider late applications. A license must be obtained for each event by the event supervisor.
F. Servers – Guests may not serve themselves; events are required to have servers who are at least 21 years old. Students must complete a server training course before becoming eligible to serve at student events. Servers may not drink any alcoholic beverages during the event. Servers must check for proof of age and may serve only one drink to a person at any time. EACH SERVER ASSUMES RESPONSIBILITY NOT TO SERVE PERSONS ALREADY INTOXICATED.
G. Alcohol Quantities – Every student is expected to plan carefully and not purchase excessive amounts of alcohol. The amount of alcohol served at a registered party must be proportional to the number of expected guests of legal drinking age and the length of the party. Hosts should plan a maximum of one drink per person of legal drinking age per hour at the event. The following formula should be sufficient for any event:
To calculate the number of servings of alcoholic beverages, multiply the number of hours of a party by the expected number of guests in attendance who are of legal age to drink. For example, a total a of 800 individual 12-ounce servings of beer would be permitted for 200 guests of legal drinking age at a 4-hour party. By way of calculation, a half-keg of beer holds approximately 150 12-ounce servings. A serving of wine should be approximately 4 ounces per person, or 16 servings per half-gallon container.
H. Non-alcoholic Beverages and Food – Any group serving alcoholic beverages is required to provide non- alcoholic beverages and some type of food, (e.g., soft drinks and light snacks) which are easily accessible. Non-alcoholic beverages should be provided in an amount equal to the number of alcoholic beverages provided but proportional to the number of guests expected to be under legal drinking age. Event sponsors must work out the specific quantities and formula with the Center for Student Programs or other designated Student Affairs officials. If the supply of non-alcoholic beverages is exhausted at any time during the event, serving of alcoholic beverages must also be terminated until more non-alcoholic beverages can be obtained.
I. Alcoholic Beverages – Standard policy prohibits hard liquor from being served at student sponsored events at Georgetown University. No “all you can drink” or open bar events will be allowed at University sponsored events, either on campus or off. Rare exceptions require prior approval from the Center for Student Programs or designated Student Affairs officials.
J. Serving of Alcoholic Beverages – Events should not focus on alcohol or facilitate over-consumption. Therefore it is recommended that all alcoholic beverages be purchased by the drink and not included in the admission price. If beverages are included in the price of admission, the “one (1) drink, per person, per hour” rule must be applied.
A sign must be clearly displayed at the serving area which reads: “District of Columbia law prohibits the sale or serving of alcoholic beverages to anyone under the age of 21 to any person who is intoxicated or appears to be intoxicated.”
K. Event Type and Location
1. Small Scale Events – Small scale events are those which will not exceed 100 persons at any one time and which can be appropriately managed by one event manager who will ensure compliance with identification and serving procedures. The following locations are available for small scale events with alcohol: Nevils Community Room, Village A Community Room, and Copley Formal Lounge. (Freshman residences will not be approved for events with alcohol.)
2. Large Scale Events – Large scale events aimed at attracting a large number of students from a cross section of classes will be required to establish and monitor a “beer garden,” the exact dimensions will be determined by the sponsoring organization and the Center for Student Programs. The beer garden will be a separate self-contained area where those who are of legal drinking age will be able to purchase and consume alcoholic beverages according to standards set forth in the University’s alcohol policy and these guidelines. The beer garden must have entrances and exits monitored by University approved personnel to confirm that alcohol consumption takes place solely and completely by those of legal drinking age within the beer garden’s confines. Procedures for identification and determination of a student’s age will be conducted in an area adjacent to but separate from the entrance of the beer garden. Due to the size and safety requirements of a beer garden, beer gardens will be allowed in the following facilities: New South cafeteria, McDonough Gymnasium, and Leavey Center Ballroom, Center Grille, Leavey Commons and Leavey Esplanade.
3. Closed Events – Closed events are special receptions, class events or student/faculty get-togethers at which all guests are specifically invited and known in advance, there is no admission price, and beverages are served free of charge. The following differences must be noted:
1. License – A District of Columbia Class “F” license will not be required, but a special Alcohol Approval will need to be obtained from the Center for Student Programs.
2. Publicity – General publicity such as flyers, posters, or mailings will not be allowed. Guests must be specifically invited in advance.
3. Tickets – Depending upon the nature of the event, complimentary tickets may be required to be distributed to guests in order to limit over-consumption.
4. “All-21” Events – Planners of events whose expected participants can be shown to consist entirely of students of legal drinking age may propose a process for event management different from, but consistent with the management procedure outlined here. This proposal will be subject to the approval of the Center for Student Programs.
L. Serving Alcoholic Beverages – Any group or organization sponsoring an event in public lounges or open areas must properly control the distribution of alcoholic beverages including checking for proper identification. In short, guests may not serve themselves. The sponsoring group or organization must take full and complete responsibility for compliance with District of Columbia law and the provisions of the University’s alcohol policy. A sign must be clearly displayed at the serving areas, which reads, “District of Columbia law prohibits the sale or serving of alcoholic beverages to anyone under the age 21 and to any person who is intoxicated or appears to be intoxicated.”
M. Identification – Proof of age is not required for general admission to a University event. However, proper identification or valid government issued ID, with picture and birth date, is required of any person served alcoholic beverages. It is illegal to purchase alcoholic beverages for or to serve alcoholic beverages to any person who is under the age of 21.
N. Publicity and Advertisement – All publicity for an event where alcoholic beverages will be served should be carefully reviewed. Under no circumstances should the publicity encourage overindulgence in alcohol or promote alcohol abuse. Furthermore, if alcohol is part of the publicity at all, the publicity must also mention other non-alcoholic beverages and food or snacks.
O. Violations – Persons found in violation of this policy will be subject to individual or organizational fines and/or disciplinary action in accordance with the Student Code of Conduct as administered by the Office of Student Conduct. Violators may jeopardize the privilege of their club, organization, or group to host other events during the academic year.
P. Security – Student groups, organizations or clubs must always arrange for security guards at functions or events when alcoholic beverages will be served. The Department of Public Safety is responsible for determining the appropriate security arrangements for each event. The group sponsoring the event must pay all security costs.
Q. Improper Behavior – Individuals who appear intoxicated or who exhibit drunken behavior will not be admitted to registered functions on campus. Moreover, individuals demonstrating such behavior while attending any registered function will be promptly removed by security, a bartender or official sponsor of the function.
R. Charity – No events may be held whose sole purpose is to raise money for charity. This means no cover charge may go to charity when the only activity at the event is drinking. This includes both on and off-campus locations.