The Cougar Chronicle

Students learn about campus drug policies

Adrianna Adame, News Reporter

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Several guest speakers informed students about the freedoms, consequences and health issues regarding marijuana at “What do you Know?… About Marijuana,” an event hosted by Student Health and Counseling Services (SHCS).

 

The event held on Oct. 30 at the USU ballroom featured Susan Writer, a psychologist at Aurora Behavioral Health, located in San Diego, as the event’s moderator.

 

In Writer’s introduction, she said that the statement that no one dies from marijuana is wrong because there are marijuana-related deaths.

 

Writer talked about how depending on the person, some individuals can become addicted to marijuana while others may not.

 

The event was comprised of three panels.

 

The first panel included Leslie Rockwell from the Dean of Students Office and Allie Serano from CSUSM’s Substance Abuse Advisory Council who discussed campus policy regarding medicinal and recreational marijuana.

 

According to Serano, marijuana is not allowed on campus because CSUSM is a federally-funded university and marijuana is not legal on a federal level. Serano said that no form of marijuana, including medicinal, edibles and oils are allowed on campus or residential housing.

 

The second panel included Jeffery Caudill, an officer at the University Police Department and Hung Bach, who discussed the role of law enforcement when it comes to marijuana.

 

After California’s Proposition 64 passed in 2016, recreational marijuana was made legal for those over 21, which eliminates the need for a felony or misdemeanor of those in possession of or under the influence.

 

Caudill explained the consequences of being caught with any form of marijuana on campus. He said that students could be given citations and the marijuana will be confiscated.

Caudill also said that students using it off campus, in the surrounding neighborhoods near the school, can face consequences “because it’s illegal to smoke marijuana in public… and [students are] still a representative of the university.”

 

The third panel included Jay Robertson-Howell; a psychologist from SHCS, Danyte Mockus-Valenzuela from the County of San Diego Health & Human Services and James Chun; a staff physician from the SHCS who discussed the behavioral, physical and physiological health of regular marijuana use.

 

Robertson-Howell said that marijuana could be responsible for depression and anxiety and that amotivational syndrome may be a result of regular marijuana use. Amotivational syndrome often mimics depression, giving individuals the lack of motivation to go through daily tasks.

 

Further information on the policies of marijuana on campus can be found at https://www.csusm.edu/dos/about/polpro.html  .

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