• Joshua Powell

How Are Colleges Responding to Medical Marijuana?

Updated: Aug 6, 2019


Ohio Colleges Respond to Medical Marijuana

Ohio University Prohibits Medical Marijuana on Campus Property


Parents planning to send their kids off to college with their medical marijuana may want to review the college's policies of possession of marijuana on campus property. According to Ohio University’s Communications Specialist Jim Saban, students will not be permitted to possess or use cannabis on school property, regardless of their status as a registered medical marijuana patient.


Sabin confirmed via email to the Athens News that “All forms of marijuana, cannabis products, and paraphernalia are not permitted to be on campus at any time for any reason.”


He says that although the state has implemented its Medical Marijuana Control Program, Ohio University’s current policy regarding marijuana will remain unchanged.


But, why?


“Marijuana of all forms remains illegal on the federal level,” Sabin goes on to say. “Ohio University is obligated to comply with the federal Drug-Free Schools and Communities Act.”


Although the possession and consumption of marijuana and marijuana products will be prohibited, students will not be required to disclose to the school that they have received a medical marijuana recommendation.

Sabin points out, “Possession of a marijuana card alone would not constitute a violation of university policy.”


How Have Other Colleges in Ohio Approached Medical Marijuana?


Back in January, several schools confirmed to WOSU that they also plan to follow federal guidelines regarding marijuana. Those schools include The Ohio State University, Otterbein University, Ohio Wesleyan University, Ohio Dominican University and the Columbus College of Art and Design. Realistically, you should expect any college or university that receives federal funding to take a similar stance; three separate federal laws restrict the use of controlled substances.


The Federal Drug-Free Workplace Act and the Federal Controlled Substances Act, along with the Drug-Free Schools and Communities Act, prohibit or restrict the use of controlled substances. Until the government is willing to loosen marijuana regulations at the federal level, this will likely remain the status-quo when it comes to medical marijuana use on the campuses of public universities.


What Does This Mean?


The state of Ohio has approved 21 conditions for eligibility to receive a medical marijuana recommendation, with two more conditions currently under consideration to be added to the qualifying conditions list in Ohio.


According to the Ohio Board of Pharmacy, around 10% of registered cannabis patients fall into the 18-29 age range. This means that, undoubtedly, some college students will be expecting to have access to their medicine when college enrollments begin later this year.


Be sure to confirm your university’s stance on medical marijuana use and take steps to protect yourselves and your kids from unintended and inconvenient consequences.


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