Safer Parties Initiative

Trinity University Guidelines for Groups/Organizations
Alcohol at Unsanctioned Private Local Events 

The recommendations below represent suggested practices that help foster student safety, well-being and responsibility at off-campus events involving alcohol. These guidelines were developed in coordination with students representing the Greek Council Executive Board and the Student Athlete Advisory Council.

Off-campus parties at private residences

Trinity University acknowledges that students will drink alcohol, cares deeply about student health and safety, and enforces policies as proscribed by law.

Because students in privately owned or rented off-campus residences sometimes host formal or informal private or public gatherings, Trinity University offers guidance for students to act as responsible hosts, peers, and neighbors.

Harm reduction

Students who reside in off-campus residences should make every effort to reduce:

  • Over-consumption which results in hospitalization or requirements for oversight at the San Antonio sobering unit.
  • Drinking and driving.
  • Unwelcome and violent behavior including fights, sexual assault, and harassment.
  • Disturbances that affect neighbors in the community.

University expectations of students

  1. Students are responsible for their own consumption of alcohol. Policies on public intoxication will be enforced on campus even if the alcohol was consumed off campus.
  2. Individuals are expected and encouraged to seek assistance for students in danger of over-consumption. All students who seek such assistance will receive amnesty through the Trinity University responsible friend policy and will not face campus judicial action.
  3. Trinity University maintains the right to consider action, in accordance with published student conduct procedures and policies, against individual students in the following circumstances, when those students, in the judgment of the Dean of Students:
  • have created unsafe situations for others and/or not sought assistance for others from helping professionals.
  • have shown a pattern of creating unsafe situations and have not taken steps to remedy their behavior.
  • have created disturbances in the community.
  • fail to cooperate with the reasonable request of law enforcement officials off-campus.
  1. When deemed appropriate, Trinity University will send notice to all students identifying any off-campus location that fails to meet expectations related to student safety.

Off-site trips

To the extent that student organizations plan off-site trips, the University has no responsibility for those trips, including any injury or damage that may occur as a result of those trips. It is, however, recommended that student organizations notify advisors or other University officials of overnight off-campus trips. It is also recommended that the student leaders of those trips have a roster of participants in advance of the trip and that they follow the recommendations for off- campus parties. In the event of any emergencies, students are encouraged to contact University officials for assistance.

Compact with student groups

The Greek Council and the Student Athletic Advisory Council have agreed to lead student efforts to train and educate students about safer alcohol and party practices. Students from these groups will work cooperatively with staff in reviewing issues and striving to improve such situations in the future.


  1. Serve all alcohol in a specific and restricted area, and responsibly monitor service throughout event.
  • Hosts should ensure that guests are not allowed free and unrestricted access to alcohol while on the premises. Host students should ensure that alcohol is limited to a designated area and that an appropriate amount of supervision exists to encourage each guest is consuming alcohol in a responsible manner within reasonable limits, such as those outlined in Trinity’s “Optimal Buzz” standard.
  • Reasonable supervision of alcohol includes, but is not limited to: restricting “self-serving” of drinks among guests, encouraging the equivalent of one standard drink maximum per serving, discouraging rapid “binge” drinking, and refusing to serve alcohol to guests who are clearly intoxicated beyond a reasonable degree.
  • Drinking games that encourage rapid consumption of alcohol and all other activities promoting binge drinking behavior should be prohibited.
  1. Have certified bartenders monitor alcohol and serve drinks.
  • While sober monitors may serve alcoholic drinks, an even greater level of prudence is for hosts to provide a trained individual (either through a TABC certified program or a comparable Trinity sponsored alcohol education class) to dispense and serve alcoholic drinks. This will further serve to encourage responsible levels of consumption.
  1. Have a reasonable number of sober monitors at all times.
  • Hosts can help ensure a safe event by providing a sufficient number of student sober monitors. Sober monitors actively observe and oversee the event to ensure reasonable levels of safety.
  • Duties of monitors include, but are not limited to, monitoring for signs of over- intoxicated guests, helping guests find safe rides home, assisting with identification of guests, guaranteeing no unsanctioned alcohol is present, and regulating event size.
  • Sober monitors should work with hosts to provide an adequate amount of food options for guests. Consumption of sustaining foods helps slow the absorption of alcohol and will assist in preventing guests from becoming intoxicated beyond a reasonable degree. Availability of food should be adequately promoted at the event
  • Hosts have the discretion to determine how many sober monitors are necessary. Hosts should consider gathering size and type, location, time of year, and any other relevant factors.
  1. Attend TABC training and/or other alcohol education awareness provided by Trinity University.
  • This training will teach students “best practices” of hosting a safe event where alcohol is served (including the guidelines listed herein), as well as important skills like identifying signs of alcohol poisoning, safely addressing emergencies that may arise, and more.
  1. Ensure safe transportation.
  • Getting students home and back to campus safely should be an important concern for event hosts. This can take the form of student-provided sober monitor rides, calling a taxicab or securing a ride-sharing service (Uber, Lyft, etc.), and having sober monitors stay with individuals as they wait for a reliable ride.
  • Hosts should encourage group transportation when appropriate and should discourage any situation leading to students becoming isolated in a “one-on-one” context (one student driving only one other student, one student walking one other student to the residence halls, etc.).
  1. Prevent congregation in outside areas; ensure guests mostly stay inside.
  • This will reduce noise and ensure that hosts are respecting Trinity’s “Respect for Community” policy. Reducing outside congregation also helps regulate the number of people in attendance to a reasonable amount.
  1. Limit guests to current Trinity Students
  • A limited number of escorted guests who are non-Trinity students is acceptable.
  1. List alcohol ingredients and amount used for mixed drinks.
  • Mixed drinks are a popular form of alcoholic beverage consumed, yet strength and ingredients can vary greatly from one event to the next. Providing a listing of ingredients utilized (especially the specific types of alcohol) and the alcohol content percentage of each will provide guests with the ability to more responsibly monitor consumption levels.
  1. Post phone numbers for sober monitors throughout the venue, and encourage sober monitors to clearly distinguish themselves in a visible manner.
  • In an emergency situation, guests may need help finding and identifying students who may be able to assist them in resolving the matter or securing the appropriate assistance necessary.