Alcohol and Other Drug Services

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At Gwynedd Mercy University, our alcohol and other drug services program is based on a model of care focused on prevention, early intervention and education. While we do not offer drug and alcohol treatment, we offer a holistic approach to health and well-being that is grounded in current research with evidenced-based health and mental health interventions. Incorporating R.A.I.S.E (Reducing Alcohol Incidents through Student Education) into our program supports our efforts to foster a healthy social and residential environment through education and programs. Additionally, R.A.I.S.E. seeks to correct the misperceptions of alcohol use on college campuses, and encourage healthy choice making.

Because our students are the main and primary focus of our program, it is important for us to be well informed and base our efforts off current student’s data and information. For that reason, our office obtains yearly student reported information on Alcohol & Drug Use, behaviors, and perceptions. You can review our most up-to-date statistics here:

Alcohol & Drug Use Stats (PDF)

Our AOD/R.A.I.S.E. Counselor, with the help of counseling center staff, provides a range of services for the University community that include the following:

  • Social norming information
  • Alcohol & drug prevention/safety information dissemination
  • Community outreach
  • Student assessment
  • Psychoeducational Events and programming
  • Collaboration and consultation with faculty & staff
  • Class presentations
  • Student trainings
  • Alcohol & other drug policy violation sessions
  • Referrals to Alcohol & Drug Treatment providers
  • Student data collection

These services provided are conducted on a voluntary basis or may be required as part of the judicial process. All University services are offered at no additional charge to students. However, you may incur a cost if evaluations and/or treatment are required to be received by a community-based provider. It is important to note that we do not provide Drug and alcohol counseling, but we will support any student in locating necessary treatment from one of our community providers.

Jesse Kunwar, MA, LPC, NCC, CCTP
Jesse is one of the counselors as well as the University’s Alcohol and Other Drug Coordinator. She has a master’s degree in Clinical/Counseling Psychology from LaSalle University and a bachelor's degree in Psychology from Lycoming College. She has been in the mental health field for 15 years, and has been with the GMercyU counseling center since 2018.

Contact Info:
215-646-7300 ext. 21395

A student may contact the AOD/R.A.I.S.E. Counselor to schedule an appointment or may be sanctioned to schedule an appointment through the judicial process as a result of a violation, either on or off campus, of the University’s Alcohol and Other Drug Policy (PDF). This policy can also be found within the Student Code of Conduct (PDF). Each sanctioned student receives three psychoeducational sessions, which includes assessment, safety information, reflection, and referral to Drug and Alcohol services if needed.

Gwynedd Mercy University is foremost concerned with the health & wellness of our students. Thus, we have adopted the policies below. Please consult the Alcohol and Other Drug Policy (PDF) for more information

Medical Amnesty / Good Samaritan Policy

Gwynedd Mercy University is committed to providing a living/learning community that employs educational processes to promote the health and safety of all students and sustain a climate conducive to their personal growth and development. Student wellness is of primary concern. Therefore, the Medical Amnesty Policy has been developed to reduce harmful alcohol and other related drug effects.  When students decide to drink or engage in drug use, the University expects that they do so in a responsible and legal manner. However, the University recognizes that there may be times when students experience severe intoxication or serious injury relating to alcohol, cannabis, and/or other drug use. Under those circumstances, Gwynedd Mercy University expects students to call for medical assistance. The University is committed to ensuring that all situations are handled with competence and compassion and prioritize safety over policy violation.

Gwynedd Mercy University strongly encourages students to seek and use medical assistance for themselves or others during emergency situations when they are dangerously under the influence of alcohol, cannabis, or drugs. No student seeking medical treatment for themselves, others, or accepting medical treatment as a result of a Good Samaritan report, for the effects of cannabis, alcohol, or other drug use, will be subject to University discipline for violating the Alcohol or Other Drug policy. Medical Amnesty may be granted to an intoxicated student; however, the student will be required to complete the necessary requirements (outlined below) including participating in the University’s R.A.I.S.E. (Reducing Alcohol Incidents through Student Education) program.

Please see the below documents for the full rules and regulations related to these two policies:

Medical Amnesty / Good Samaritan Policy (PDF)

Off-Campus Behavior Policy
All students must be aware of the following:

  • The University may discipline students for incidents that occur off campus
  • The decisions of the University and Magistrate/Courts are independent and mutually exclusive
  • The University may discipline students in all cases where a citation or arrest takes place
  • The University will not delay issuing a decision in a case because of a pending case before the Magistrate or Courts

The Drug Free Schools and Campuses Regulations (34 CFR Part 86) of the Drug-Free Schools and Communities Act (DFSCA) require an institution of higher education (IHE), such as Gwynedd Mercy University to certify it has implemented programs to prevent the abuse of alcohol and use or distribution of illicit drugs by Gwynedd Mercy University students and employees both on its premises and as a part of any of its activities.  

At a minimum each institution of higher education must annually distribute the following in writing to all students and employees:  

  • Standards of conduct that clearly prohibit the unlawful possession, use or distribution of illicit drugs and alcohol by students and employees;  
  • A description of the legal sanctions under local, state, or federal law for the unlawful possession or distribution of illicit drugs and alcohol;  
  • A description of any drug or alcohol counseling, treatment, or rehabilitation or reentry programs that are available to employees or students; and  
  • A clear statement that the institution will impose sanctions on students and employees and a description of those sanctions, up to and including expulsion or termination of employment and referral for prosecution, for violations of the standards of conduct.  
The law further requires that the institution conduct a biennial review of its program with the following objectives:  

  • Determining the effectiveness of the policy and implementing changes to the alcohol and other drug programs if they are needed; and  
  • To ensure that the sanctions developed are enforced consistently. 
You may review these disclosures, policies, program overview, and biennial review below: