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Drug Testing Policy

Drug/Alcohol Education & Testing Program

1. Introduction

The following policy statement has been adopted and shall be administered by the McDaniel College Athletic Department. McDaniel College reserves the right to make changes to this policy as needed, and this policy should not be construed to create a contract between student-athlete and McDaniel College. Please note this policy represents the McDaniel College Drug/Alcohol Education & Testing Program, which is separate and distinct from the NCAA drug-testing program (including all sanction phases).  Information regarding the NCAA drug-testing program is available at www.ncaa.org

McDaniel College is concerned with the health, safety and welfare of the student-athletes who participate in its programs and represent the college in competitive athletics.  Substance abuse is one of the most important issues facing athletics and society today. The use of illegal drugs, misuse of legal drugs and dietary supplements, use of performance-enhancing substances, use of alcohol and inappropriate use of tobacco are inconsistent with the standards expected of student-athletes at McDaniel College. Substance use and abuse in sport can pose risks to a student-athlete’s health/safety and negatively affect his/her academic and athletic performance. Substance use and abuse in sport may also compromise the integrity of athletic competition and the ideals of McDaniel College.

For the purposes of this policy, “student-athlete” shall mean any student at McDaniel College who participates in any sanctioned Athletics Department sponsored intercollegiate sporting event and/or practice.

2. Purpose

The Athletic Department believes that random drug testing and testing based on reasonable suspicion are appropriate to ensure the health, safety and welfare of our student-athletes, to promote fair competition in intercollegiate athletics, to affirm compliance with applicable rules and regulations on drug and alcohol abuse, to identify student-athletes who are improperly using drugs or alcohol and to assist them before they harm themselves or others.  Furthermore, the Athletic Department recognizes its responsibility to provide educational programming that will support a positive decision-making process. 

The intent of these policies is to prevent substance use and abuse by student-athletes through education, testing, and professional guidance.

  • Education – providing student-athletes and athletic staff with accurate information about the problems associated with substance use in sport, promoting health and safety in sport;
  • Testing – analyzing biological specimens to detect prohibited substances student-athletes may introduce to their bodies and associated sanctions resulting from use detailed in this policy; and
  • Professional Referral – appropriate assessment, brief intervention, treatment and rehabilitation of student-athletes.

3. Alcohol, Tobacco and Other Drug Education

Participants who are educated about substance use in sport are more likely to make informed and intelligent decisions about usage. McDaniel College will conduct a drug and alcohol education program for student-athletes at least once a year. These educational programs will be designed to review athletic department, institutional, conference and national governing body policies related to alcohol, tobacco and other drugs.  Appropriate educational materials will be made available to participants including this Policy and a list of banned substances.  All student-athletes are required to attend.  Make-up sessions are available for participants who must miss a scheduled educational session for an approved reason. In addition to educating student-athletes and athletics staff about the various policies, a review of the institutional drug-testing program will be conducted.  Dietary supplements and their inherent risks will be discussed.  Time will be allowed for questions from participants.  In addition, special educational programs may be arranged to provide participants the opportunity to learn more about the dangers of specific substances. 

4. Consent to Participate

As a condition of participation in intercollegiate athletics at McDaniel College, each student-athlete will be required to sign a consent form agreeing to undergo drug and alcohol testing and authorizing release of test results in accordance with this policy (See Appendix A).  By signing this consent form, the student-athlete understands it is the right of every sport team to administer specific team policies that include additional or more severe sanctions than that of this department-wide policy. Failure to consent to or to comply with the requirements of this policy may result in suspension from participation or termination of eligibility to participate in intercollegiate athletics at McDaniel College. Each student-athlete annually will be given a copy of the institutional policy and will be required to participate in an informative session describing alcohol, tobacco and other drug education and testing policies. Additionally, student-athletes will be given an opportunity to ask any questions regarding the information contained in the policy, the testing program, or other related issues prior to signing the drug-testing consent form.

5. Tobacco Policy

The use of tobacco products is prohibited by all game personnel (e.g. coaches, student-athletes, athletic trainers, managers and game officials) in all sports during practice and competition.  A student-athlete who violates this tobacco policy will be sanctioned for a “first offense” as outlined in the penalty section of this policy.  The Director of Athletics or his/her designee will sanction other game personnel who violate this tobacco policy on a case-by-case basis.

6. Dietary Supplements

Many dietary supplements or ergogenic aids contain banned substances.  Oftentimes the labeling of dietary supplements is not accurate and is misleading.  Terms such as “healthy” or “all natural” do not mean dietary supplements do not contain a banned substance or are safe to take.  Using dietary supplements may cause positive drug tests.  Student-athletes who are currently taking or intend to take dietary supplements are required to review the product with the Head Athletic Trainer.  Student-athletes are solely responsible for any substance that they ingest.  All student-athletes are encouraged to use the Drug Free Sport Resource Exchange Center (REC) to obtain current and accurate information on dietary supplements or ergogenic aids.  All inquiries to the REC are confidential.  The Resource Exchange Center may be accessed toll free at 1-877-202-0769, or at www.drugfreesport.com/REC/.  The Web site requires a password, which corresponds to McDaniel divisional affiliation: ncaa3.

By signing the McDaniel College Drug/Alcohol Education & Testing Program Consent Form, the student-athlete:

  1. Acknowledges that he/she understands that they are to disclose all prescribed drugs and dietary supplements dietary supplements used to the head athletic trainer; 
  2. Acknowledges the aforementioned policies and statements, and fully accepts the detrimental and possibly permanent defects caused by the use of dietary supplements;
  3. Fully accepts that they have been made aware of the McDaniel College and the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) policies with regard to the use of dietary supplements;
  4. Accepts any and all liability if they have in the past used, continue to use, and/or use at any time in the future, dietary supplements in any form; and releases the McDaniel College, its agents, and all personnel of any and all responsibility and liability related to such use.

7. Prohibited Drugs/Substances

The drug screening process may include analysis of, but is not limited to, the NCAA list of banned-drug classes. The prohibited substances that McDaniel College may screen for include: marijuana, PCP, opiates, MDMA (Ecstasy), amphetamines/methamphetamines, cocaine, masking agents/diuretics, and anabolic steroids. For an ongoing updated listing of the banned-drug list, view the NCAA’s web site at www.ncaa.org. Additional prohibited substances can be added at any time under the discretion of the McDaniel Athletic Training staff. McDaniel College requires that all student-athletes keep the athletic training staff and/or team physician aware of any prescribed drugs and dietary supplements that he or she may be taking.  McDaniel College reserves the right to test for substances not contained on the NCAA banned-drug list and may test at cut off levels that differ from the NCAA program.

8. Specimen Analysis

The drug screening process may include, but are not limited to, the following biological specimen collection methods: 

  • Urine Testing.  The collection process and protocol can be found in Appendix C.

9. Selected Types of Drug Testing

  • Unannounced Random Testing

All student-athletes who have signed the institutional drug-testing consent form and are listed on the institutional squad list are subject to unannounced random testing. 

  • Pre-season Screening

Student-athletes are subject to pre-season drug testing and may be notified of such by the Director of Athletics or his/her designee at any time prior to their first competition.

  • Reasonable Suspicion Screening

A student-athlete may be subject to testing at any time when the Director of Athletics or his/her designee determines there is individualized reasonable suspicion to believe the participant is using a prohibited drug.  Such reasonable suspicion may be based on objective information as determined by the Director of Athletics or by an Associate/Assistant Athletic Director, Head Coach, Assistant Coach, Head Athletic Trainer, or Assistant Athletic Trainer and deemed reliable by the Director of Athletics or his/her designee. Athletics staff members are considered school officials with legitimate educational interests who may need to review an education record in order to fulfill their professional responsibilities for the College. Reasonable suspicion may include, without limitation, 1) observed possession or use of substances appearing to be prohibited drugs, 2) arrest or conviction for a criminal offense related to the possession or transfer of prohibited drugs or substances, or 3) observed abnormal appearance, conduct or behavior reasonably interpretable as being caused by the use of prohibited drugs or substances. Among the indicators which may be used in evaluating a student-athlete’s abnormal appearance, conduct or performance are: class attendance, significant GPA changes, athletic practice attendance, increased injury rate or illness, physical appearance changes, academic/athletic motivational level, emotional condition, mood changes, and legal involvement.  If suspected, the Director of Athletics or his/her designee will notify the student-athlete and the student-athlete must stay with a member of their coaching staff, the athletics administration staff, or the sports medicine staff, until an adequate specimen is produced.  Note: The possession and/or use of illegal substances may be determined by means other than urinalysis.  When an individual is found to be in possession and/or using such substances, he/she will be subject to the same procedures that would be followed in the case of a positive urinalysis.

  • Postseason/Championship Screening

Any participant or team likely to advance to post-season championship competition may be subject to additional testing.  Testing may be required of all team members or individual student-athletes at any time within thirty (30) days prior to the post-season competition.  If a student-athlete tests positive, he or she will not be allowed to compete at the post-season event and will be subject to the sanctions herein.  

  • Re-entry Testing

A student-athlete, who has had his or her eligibility to participate in intercollegiate sports suspended as a result of a drug or alcohol violation, will be required to undergo re-entry drug and/or alcohol testing prior to regaining eligibility.  The Head Athletic Trainer or his/her designee shall arrange for re-entry testing after the counselor or specialist involved in the student-athlete’s case indicates that re-entry into the intercollegiate sports program is appropriate. 

  • Follow-up Testing

A student-athlete who has returned to participation in intercollegiate sports following a positive drug test under this policy may be subject to follow-up testing.  Testing will be unannounced and will be required at a frequency determined by the Athletic Director or his/her designee in consultation with the counselor or specialist involved in the student-athlete’s case.

10. Notification and Reporting for Collections

The student-athlete will be notified of and scheduled for testing by the Head Athletic Trainer.  Notifications of testing shall consist of a face-to-face meeting with the student-athlete, a phone conversation with the student-athlete, and/or via electronic mail with confirmation by the student-athlete.  The notification will include: a date and time to report to the testing station.  Upon arrival, the student-athlete will read and sign the Student-Athlete Notification Form. Failure to show up for a drug test after receiving notification will be considered a positive test and sanctions will be applied accordingly.

The Head Athletic Trainer or his/her designee will be in the testing station to certify the identity of the student-athletes selected.  Student-athletes shall provide picture identification when entering the drug-testing station.  The Head Athletic Trainer or his/her designee must remain in the collection station until all student-athletes complete the collection process. 

ALL COLLECTIONS AND/OR TESTING UNDER THIS POLICY SHALL BE OBSERVED COLLECTIONS.  

11. Laboratory Analysis/Reporting Results

Urine samples will be collected and sent to by the laboratory that is retained by the College.  Furthermore, McDaniel College hereby certifies that no sample will be sent to the laboratory for the sole purpose of monitoring an athlete for the detection of performance enhancing substances in order to circumvent a positive drug test. Each sample will be tested in accordance with the laboratory normal procedures and results returned to McDaniel College to determine if banned drugs or substances are present and the appropriate sanctions will apply for positive results.

If the laboratory reports a specimen as substituted, manipulated or adulterated, the student-athlete will be deemed to have refused to submit to testing and treated as if the test were positive for a banned substance.

All student-athlete information and records associated with the McDaniel College drug- testing program will be confidential and will be released only to those individuals with a legitimate need to know.

12. Sanctions

Refusal to sign a consent form prohibits a student-athlete from participating in any intercollegiate sport at McDaniel College. The following are subject to the sanctions defined below: 1) Any student-athlete who tests positive for a banned substance 2) Any student-athlete who refuses to submit to a required drug test 3) Any student-athlete who violates the terms of the safe harbor program 4) A student-athlete who has a positive result in an NCAA, Conference and/or any other testing program 5) A student-athlete who is found to have possession of a banned substance on or off campus 6) A student-athlete who admits use after drug testing notification (in the event of admitted use, a sanction may be applied even if the drug test result is below the threshold level used by the College) 7) a student-athlete who is found to have violated the college drug or alcohol policy in or out of the traditional or championship season (These violations will be reported to athletics and the student may experience sanctions from both the student conduct process as well as the athletics drug testing process – potentially 2 sets of sanctions). Notwithstanding anything herein to the contrary, a team physician, in his/her sole discretion, reserves the right to withhold a student-athlete from practice and/or competition if such practice and/or competition would pose a threat to the health and safety of the student-athlete or his/her competitors.  However, any decision to restrict a student-athlete from practice and/or competition for health and safety concerns must be based on credible evidence.   Only the McDaniel College team physician may release a student-athlete to resume competition and/or practice.  All violations of this policy are cumulative. In addition to the athletic department sanctions listed below, as a student of McDaniel College, the student-athlete may be subjected to harsher college penalties. As in the case with any violation of the student conduct code, any offense, even a first offense, can be punished with sanctions up to and including expulsion, depending on the nature and circumstances of the violation, the prior record of the student, and other factors deemed pertinent.   

McDaniel College is under no obligation to follow the steps below; it may in its discretion and consistent with applicable policy take any action in response to violations of this and/or other McDaniel College policies, up to and including expulsion, at any time and regardless of whether or not there has been a prior offense.

  • First Offense

The Head Athletic Trainer will schedule a confidential meeting with the student-athlete, the Director of Athletics or his/her designee and the appropriate head coach to review the positive drug test results.  The team physician may also be present if deemed necessary by the Director of Athletics or his/her designee.  The Director of Athletics or his/her designee will notify the student-athlete’s parent(s) or legal guardian(s) by telephone and in writing. The student-athlete will be mandated to complete the Before One More Substance Use Assessment and Psychoeducation program facilitated by the Carroll County Health Department with a trained substance abuse prevention coordinator. The student athlete will also be mandated to sign a waiver/authorization for the release of information to the director of athletics and the head athletics trainer at the McDaniel College counseling center housed within the Wellness Center. As a part of this assessment, the student-athlete may be expected to discuss the nature and extent of his/her involvement with prohibited drugs and/or alcohol. The student-athlete will be required to undergo re-entry testing and test negative prior to regaining eligibility. In addition, McDaniel’s team physician, at their sole discretion, reserves the right to withhold a student-athlete from practice and/or competition if such practice and/or competition would pose a threat to the health and safety of the student-athlete, teammates and/or his/her competitors.  The student-athlete will also be subject to follow-up testing for the remainder of their eligibility.  Additional testing will be unannounced and will be required at a frequency determined by the Director of Athletics or his/her designee. All costs associated with any counseling session shall be the sole responsibility of the student-athlete. Failing to comply with the counselor’s directions for treatment will be classified as a second offense. The student-athlete will also be required to present a research paper describing the immediate and long term affects associated with the substance for which the athlete tested positive.  The presentation of the paper will be given to the head coach and athletic trainer assigned to the athlete’s squad.  

  • Second Offense

The suspension shall be served in the defined championship or traditional season. If the suspension not be fulfilled in one season the remainder will carry over to the next season.  The student-athlete will be mandated to complete the Before One More Substance Use Assessment and Psychoeducation program and sign a waiver/authorization for the release of information to the director of athletics and the head athletics trainer at the McDaniel College counseling center housed within the Wellness Center.  As part of this assessment, the student-athlete will be expected to discuss the nature and extent of his/her involvement with prohibited drugs and/or alcohol. Based on this assessment, the counselor will provide recommendations for any further intervention or treatment needed by the student athlete based on the circumstances of the case. All costs associated with any counseling session shall be the sole responsibility of the student-athlete.  Failing to comply with the counselor’s directions for treatment will be classified as a third offense. The student-athlete will be required to undergo re-entry testing and test negative prior to regaining eligibility. The student-athlete will also be subject to follow-up testing for the remainder of their eligibility. The student-athlete will also be required to perform 20 hours of community service.  Additional testing will be unannounced and will be required at a frequency determined by the Director of Athletics or his/her designee.

  • Third Offense

The Head Athletic Trainer will schedule a confidential meeting with the student-athlete, the Director of Athletics or his/her designee and the appropriate head coach to review the positive drug test results.  The student-athlete will be suspended for one full calendar year (365 days) from practice or competition in any sport at McDaniel College with the possibility of dismissal from the squad. The student-athlete will be mandated to complete the Before One More Substance Use Assessment and Psychoeducation program and sign a waiver/authorization for the release of information to the director of athletics and the head athletics trainer at the McDaniel College counseling center housed within the Wellness Center.  As at the McDaniel College counseling center housed within the Wellness Center.  As part of this assessment, the student-athlete will be expected to discuss the nature and extent of his/her involvement with prohibited drugs and/or alcohol. Based on this assessment, the counselor will provide recommendations for any further intervention or treatment needed by the student athlete based on the circumstances of the case. All costs associated with any counseling session shall be the sole responsibility of the student-athlete.

The Head Athletic Trainer will schedule a confidential meeting with the student-athlete, the Director of Athletics or his/her designee and the appropriate head coach to review the positive drug test results.  The student-athlete will be suspended for one full calendar year (365 days) from practice or competition in any sport at McDaniel College with the possibility of dismissal from the squad. The student-athlete will be mandated to complete the Before One More Substance Use Assessment and Psychoeducation program and mandated to sign a waiver/authorization and waiver to release information to the Director of Athletics and Head Athletic Trainer at the McDaniel College counseling center housed within the Wellness Center.    As part of this assessment, the student-athlete will be expected to discuss the nature and extent of his/her involvement with prohibited drugs and/or alcohol. Based on this assessment, the counselor will provide recommendations for any further intervention or treatment needed by the student athlete based on the circumstances of the case. All costs associated with any counseling session shall be the sole responsibility of the student-athlete.

  • Fourth Offense

The student-athlete will be permanently suspended from participating in any sport at McDaniel College.

A recommendation will be made that the student-athlete enrolls in an appropriate treatment program.  The Department of Athletics will be willing to assist the student-athlete with enrolling in such a treatment program but will not assume any financial responsibility for the student-athlete’s treatment program.

13. Individual Team Policy

Head Coaches of intercollegiate athletic teams have the exclusive prerogative and authority to determine which qualified individuals trying out for a varsity team will become and/or remain members of the team.  Exercise of this prerogative is based upon consideration of a number of factors, including ability.  Coaches are fully aware of the educational and rehabilitative focus of this Policy, and they are also of the aware of the impact of illicit drugs may have on an individual’s ability to perform in practice or competition.  Student- athletes should understand that a positive test result will be made known to their respective head coach and the that the coach will consider such positive test result(s) in assessing an individual’s ability and in determining which individuals should be afforded the privilege of becoming and remaining members of varsity athletic teams representing McDaniel College.  Nothing contained in this Policy shall be construed as preventing a head coach from imposing a more severe sanction than those provided in this Policy.

14. Missing A Counseling or Community Service Session

It is the responsibility of the student-athlete who makes an appointment with a counselor to keep that appointment and provide documentation to the Head Athletic Trainer. If the student-athlete is not able to keep the appointment he or she is expected to cancel the appointment by telephone. Prior to the appointment, the student-athlete will read and sign an informed consent for evaluation and treatment, which includes an agreement to follow the appointment policies.

Failure to keep, cancel or document an appointment  as stated above may result in suspension from practice and/or competition as determined by the Director of Athletics or his/her designee.

15. Voluntary Disclosure/Safe Harbor

A student-athlete who has engaged in prohibited drug or alcohol use is encouraged to seek assistance from the Athletic Department by voluntarily disclosing his or her use prior to an announced drug test.

  • If the student-athlete seeks assistance prior to being identified as having violated this policy or being notified that he or she must undergo screening, the impermissible use will not be deemed an offense for purposes of determining sanctions under this policy; however, the student-athlete will be ineligible to participate in intercollegiate sports pending an evaluation.  The student-athlete entering the safe harbor program will be mandated to complete the Before One More Substance Use Assessment and Psychoeducation program and sign a waiver/authorization the release of information to the director of athletics and the head athletics trainer from the McDaniel College counseling center housed within the Wellness Center. As part of this assessment, the student-athlete may be expected to discuss the nature and extent of his/her involvement with prohibited drugs and/or alcohol. Based on this assessment, a counselor may provide recommendations for any further intervention or treatment needed by the student athlete based on the circumstances of the case. In addition, the athlete be required to take a drug test immediately to establish a baseline for follow-up testing. 
  • A student-athlete will be permitted to remain in the Safe Harbor Program for a reasonable period of time, not to exceed thirty (30) days, as determined by the treatment plan.  However, the student-athlete will not be permitted to return to participation in intercollegiate athletics until a counselor has interviewed the student-athlete following the conclusion of the recommended treatment (or stage of treatment, as applicable) and he/she has passed a follow-up drug test. The counselor and/or a student affairs administrator will provide any recommendations to the Head Athletic Trainer and/or the Athletic Director or his/her designee. A determination of the athlete’s eligibility to participate in intercollegiate athletics will be based on notification to the Head Athletic Trainer and/or the Athletic Director or his/her designee verifying the successful completion of any recommended treatment.
  • Failing to complete the recommended treatment, or having a positive test for any banned substance that indicates new use after entering the Safe Harbor Program will be deemed the next subsequent offense under this policy (minimum level two).
  • If the student-athlete regains his or her eligibility to participate in intercollegiate athletics, he or she may be required to undergo unannounced follow-up tests at the discretion of the Head Athletic Trainer and/or the Athletic Director or his/her designee.
  • A student-athlete will not be permitted to enter the Safe Harbor Program thirty (30) days prior to an NCAA, Conference, or any other postseason competition. All costs associated with any treatment or counseling session shall be the sole responsibility of the student-athlete.

16. Appeal

Student‑athletes who test positive for a banned substance by the laboratory retained by the College may, within 72 hours following receipt of notice of the laboratory finding, contest the finding.  Upon the student-athlete’s request for additional testing of the sample, the Director of Athletics will formally request the laboratory retained by the College to perform testing on specimen B.    The student-athlete will remain eligible while waiting for the results of specimen B.  Specimen B findings will be final, subject to the results of any appeal.  If specimen B results are negative, the drug test will be considered negative. 

Student-athletes who test positive under the terms of the McDaniel College Drug/Alcohol Education & Testing Program  will be entitled to a hearing with the Director of Athletics or his/her designee prior to the imposition of any sanction.  Requests for such a hearing must be made within forty-eight (48) hours of notification of a positive test result.  If the forty-eight hours would end on a weekend, the request must be made by noon on the next business day.  Requests must be in writing and received by the the Head Athletic Trainer and/or Director of Athletics or his/her designee. 

The student-athlete may have an advisor, or any representative other than an attorney, if the student so desires.  However, the student-athlete must present his or her own case to the Director of Athletics or his/her designee.  If reasonable under the circumstances, the meeting should take place no more than seventy-two (72) hours after the written request is received. The student-athlete may request an extension of time to the Director of Athletics, who will consider whether to grant the extension upon a showing of good cause.  These proceedings shall include an opportunity for the student-athlete to present evidence, as well as to review the results of the drug test.  The proceedings shall be confidential.  The decision by the the Director of Athletics or his/her designee regarding the sanction to be imposed shall be final.

17. Medical Exceptions

The NCAA and McDaniel College recognize that some banned substances are used for legitimate medical purposes.  Accordingly, the NCAA and McDaniel College allow exceptions to be made for those participants with a documented medical history demonstrating the need for regular use of such a drug.  Exceptions may be granted for substances included in the following classes of banned drugs:  stimulants, beta blockers, diuretics and peptide hormones.  Information regarding exceptions procedures can be found at www.ncaa.org/health-safety.

18. Confidentiality

The program has been designed for the protection of all our participants as well as others associated with the athletics program.  Any information concerning a student-athlete's alleged or confirmed use of banned substance solicited or received pursuant to implementation of this policy, shall be restricted to institutional personnel and to parents or guardians as provided herein,

Additional Information:

If you have any questions regarding this program, please contact:

Paul Moyer, Director of Athletics
pmoyer@mcdaniel.edu 

Gregg Nibbelink, Head Athletic Trainer
gnibbeli@mcdaniel.edu