Avoid Violations

What you do both on and off campus affects you as a student. In accordance with Sections IX. Jurisdiction and X. The Responsibilities of Dual Membership, the Student Conduct Code applies to students and student groups, in some circumstances, even if the behavior occurred off campus. The student conduct process is different and separate from the legal process. The legal process investigates and resolves alleged violations of law, whereas the student conduct process investigates and resolves alleged violations of University policy. When a student is charged in both a legal process, and in the student conduct process, the University will decide on the basis of its interests, the interests of affected students, and the interests of the community whether to proceed with the student conduct process or to defer action. Determinations made or outcomes imposed under the Student Conduct Code will not be subject to change because criminal charges arising out of the same facts were dismissed, reduced, or resolved, in favor of the criminal law defendant. 

Below are common, though not extensive, law/ordinance infractions that will also result in a Student Conduct Code violation.


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Alcohol & Drug Violations

The legal age to consume alcohol in Minnesota is 21. Marijuana is illegal at any age. If you choose to drink or use illegal drugs, you inherently put yourself at risk for Student Conduct Code violations as well as other negative consequences. 


Social Host, Disturbing the Neighborhood, Disorderly Conduct

What is a social host citation?

  • In Duluth, to be cited under the social host ordinance you could have just 3 people (1 who is underage), who may be roommates, and alcohol only needs to be “available” to the underage person. 
  • See the entire ordinance under Chapter 8 - Beverages: Sec. 8-29.5 Social host allowing consumption by minor.

Why do some cities have this ordinance?

  • To promote better relationships between residences with underage guests or tenants & the community in general.
  • “Prohibiting underage consumption acts to protect underage persons, as well as the general public, from injuries related to alcohol consumption.” 

What is the difference between Disturbing the Neighborhood and Social Host?

  • The primary difference between the Social Host and Disturbing the Neighborhood ordinances is that there need not be any underage drinkers present for you and your roommates to be cited for Disturbing the Neighborhood.
  • See the entire ordinance under Chapter 34 - Offenses -- Miscellaneous: Sec. 34-5 Disturbing the Neighborhood.

How can these impact you beyond the citation?

  • Most landlords have stipulations in the lease related to the social host ordinance.
    • You may receive a fine or your security deposit may be retained.
    • Multiple violations may end in eviction since your behavior impacts your landlord's ability to keep their rental license, resulting in their rental property becoming a financial burden for them. Finding a rental after an eviction will be much more challenging than renting with a clean record and strong references.
  • Once you’ve upset your neighbors, it can be hard to repair that relationship.
    • Frustrated Neighbors are more likely to call the police, less likely to help out when you need assistance. Further, their opinion of you specifically reflects negatively on the UMD community as a whole. 

Driving While Impaired (DUI/DWI)

Know the law:

  • Minnesota Driving Under the Influence: DUI Law
  • Refusal to provide the requested sample (usually breath) is a crime in itself: see Implied Consent Law (refusal to submit to chemical test crime)
  • Minnesota law also states that you cannot have a drop of alcohol in your system and drive if you are under the age of 21
  • Being under the influence of drugs other than alcohol can also result in a DUI (even prescription and over the counter medications can be a concern -- be sure to discuss any restrictions with your doctor or pharmacist)
  • Check out this helpful information from the Minnesota Department of Public Safety: DWI Consequences

Keep things in perspective:

  • The impact of a DUI/DWI varies based on a variety of factors, but may include: nights in jail, lost jobs, transportation challenges, financial hardship (including legal bills), difficult conversations with parents and/or significant others
  • The Office of Student Conduct & Conflict Resolution is notified of citations, even if you’re cited off campus by Duluth Police Department.
  • The cost of a DUI/DWI is expensive...
    • Cost of Finding a Ride:
      • Sober Friend = $0
      • DTA Bus to Campus with UMD ID = $0
      • DTA Bus to anywhere without UMD ID = $1.50
      • Taxi/Uber/Lyft = $5-20 (approx.)
    • Cost of a DUI/DWI = Upwards of $5000
      • Depends on the case, but most likely will exceed this amount
      • Often lose driving privileges
      • Permanently on your driving record
      • May affect employment


Fake ID

Know the Law

  • Whether a fake ID is used to purchase alcohol or merely to enter an establishment that requires you to be 21 or older, here are the legalities to consider before buying, making, or possessing one:
    • Gross Misdemeanors (higher level law violations):
      • Making a counterfeit driver’s license or Minnesota ID card
      • Using someone else’s name and date of birth when asked by a police officer
    • Misdemeanors (lower level law violations):
      • Using a fake name or date of birth or otherwise lying to a police officer *notice the difference between this and the violation that’s a Gross Misdemeanor! 
      • Using someone else’s driver’s license or ID as your own
      • Allowing someone else to use your driver’s license or ID as their own
      • Having any fake or altered driver’s license or Minnesota ID card

How can this impact you beyond the violation?

  • When thinking of using, making, or possessing a fake ID, consider how a future employer might view this situation if you get caught. It’s likely that they’ll become aware of the matter through a background check. 
  • If you order a fake ID you are providing your sensitive information to non-law abiding people/companies who could take advantage of you and your identity.

Theft (Shoplifting, Stealing on the Job, etc.)

Many students are on a tight budget. Oftentimes in conduct meetings, this is the reason given for a theft charge. Whether an item is needed or just wanted, theft in any form is a crime. 

Things to consider:

  • As an adult, your choices impact you now, much more than as a juvenile.
  • Peer pressure can be challenging, but how you handle it says volumes about your character. Seek counseling if you need support or ideas on how to manage this.
  • An item costing one penny is the same charge (degree of theft) as something that costs $499. 
  • A shoplifting charge will cost over $150 in court costs and can also harm your career prospects.