Skip to main content
Introduction
Valley City State University recognizes the adverse effects of drug use. Not only is the use of drugs illegal, it also poses a great threat to the physical and mental wellbeing of our student athletes.
It is our objective to discourage the use of illegal drugs both on and off campus. Valley City State recognizes that is a privilege for a student-athlete to be a part of our athletic teams and with this privilege comes the expectations of maintaining integrity on and off the playing field. 
  
Purpose
This policy is not to be construed as a contract between the institution and the student-athletes at Valley City State University. However, signed consent and notification forms shall be considered affirmation of the student-athlete’s agreement to the terms and conditions contained in this policy. In addition, Valley City State University may amend the policy at any time. The Athletic Department believes that random drug testing and testing based on reasonable suspicion are appropriate to help ensure to the following
  • To promote health, safety and welfare of student-athletes who participate in Valley City State intercollegiate athletics
  • To prevent and deter illegal drug use and abuse among student-athletes
  • To offer assistance and education to athletes using drugs
  • Identify problems with substance abuse at its earliest stage
  • To educate student-athletes on the physiological and psychological dangers inherent in the use and misuse of drugs
  • To protect student-athletes, and others whom they compete against, from potential injury as a result of drug use
Definition
  • Student Athlete- is a participant in an organized sport at Valley City State University
    • All student-athletes at Valley City State University are subject to drug testing.
      • This includes student-athletes that are eligible, academically ineligible, or red-shirted.
  • Controlled Substance- any of a category of behavior-altering or addictive drugs whose possession and use are restricted by law.
     
TESTING PROCEDURES

Periodic Random Drug Screening
Valley City State University will periodically randomly select student-athletes to participate in drug screening. Drug testing will be conducted during the course of the academic year. The University will test no more than 50 student-athletes each year.  However, Valley City State University reserves the right to drug test student-athletes at any time if there is reasonable suspicion.  The list of drugs for which a student athlete will be tested is based on guidelines established by the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics “NAIA”. The drug screening may include, but is not limited to, testing for marijuana (THC), amphetamines (AMP), benzodiapines (BZO), cocaine (COC), methamphetamine (METH), opiates (OPI), oxycodone (OXY), Anabolic Steroids. A more comprehensive list of drugs eligible for screening can be found on the NAIA’s website at www.naia.org.

Consent
 Each student athlete will be required to sign a consent form stating that he/she has read the drug testing policy and understands its consequences and agrees to participate. 
 
Notification and Reporting for Collections
All information and records will remain confidential and be released only to the following persons other than the student athlete
  • Athletics director
  • Director of health services
  • Head coach of student athlete
  • Athletic trainer of student athlete
  • Student athlete’s parents or legal guardians (if athlete is under the age of 18)
Valley City State University’s Director of Health Services will serve as the testing administrator. Drug Free Sport will be contracted for analyzing test samples collected by the testing administrator. When a student athlete is selected by Drug Free Sport’s random selection program, the testing administrator will notify the student athlete by either direct contact or phone call. The student athlete will be notified no more than 24 hours prior to the test. They will be instructed to arrive at a screening site at a designated time. 

Oral Fluid Collection Guidelines:
  1. Only those persons authorized by the institution will be allowed in the collection room.
  2. When arriving to the collection room, the student-athlete will provide photo identification or a client representative will need to identify the student-athlete.
    The student-athlete will then print his or her name and arrival time on the Roster Sign-In Form.
  3. The student-athlete will select a Custody & Control Form (CCF) from a supply of such and work with the institutional collector to complete the necessary information before proceeding with the specimen collection process.
  4. The collector will verify the student-athlete has not had anything in his/her mouth for 10 minutes prior to beginning the collection process.
  5. The student-athlete will select an oral fluid collection device from a supply of such (2 if collecting both A & B specimen), verify it has not been opened, and inspect the expiration date to verify the device is not expired.
  6. The collector will instruct the student-athlete to open the outer packaging of the device and remove the collection device from the packaging sleeve.
  7. The student-athlete will place the collection pad between the lower cheek and gums and gently rub the pad back and forth along the gum line until the pad is moist
    (use each side of mouth if collecting an A and B specimen).
    Once moist, the student-athlete will leave the collection pad between cheek and gum for a minimum of five minutes.
  8. After the collector verifies the collection pad has been in the student-athlete’s mouth for five minutes, the student-athlete is instructed to open the specimen vial in an upright position, with the tip pointed downward, by gently rocking the cap back and forth to avoid spilling the contents.
  9. The student-athlete will remove the collection pad from his/her mouth and push it into the specimen vial as far as it will go, and snap the collection wand at the scored line against the side of the vial.
    Verify the student-athlete does not tilt the specimen vial or spill the fluid inside.
  10. The student-athlete will place the specimen vial cap onto the vial until it snaps, ensuring a secure fit.
  11. The collector will take the specimen collection vial and custody and control form (CCF) and instruct the student-athlete to closely observe the specimen processing.
  12. If a student-athlete is suspected of manipulating specimens, the institutional collector will collect another specimen from the student-athlete.
  13. The specimen processor will seal each vial using the vial seals attached to the CCF; assuring seals are tightly adhered to the vials with no tears or loose areas.
  14. The specimen processor must then collect all necessary signatures (validator, student-athlete, and collector/specimen processor) and dates/times where indicated on the CCF.
  15. The specimen processor will place the specimen vial and CCF into the specimen bag and securely seal.
  16. The student-athlete is then released by the institutional collector.
  17. All sealed samples will be secured in a shipping case.
    The collector will prepare the case for forwarding.
  18. After the collection has been completed, the samples will be forwarded to Clinical Reference Laboratory and copies of any forms forwarded to the Sport Drug Testing Department.
  19. The samples then become the property of the client.
If the student-athlete does not comply with the collection process, the institutional collector will notify the appropriate institutional administrator and Drug Free Sport.
 
Refusal/Failure to be Tested
If a student-athlete fails to show up for the test at the specified time or otherwise fails to provide the sample when requested, he/she will be required to meet with the Head Coach, Head Athletic Trainer and Athletics Director. At this meeting, the student-athlete will be given the opportunity to explain his/her actions. If, as a result of that meeting, the Athletics Director determines that the reason(s) given are not satisfactory, the student-athlete will be suspended immediately for a period of one year from date of refusal and will not be allowed to participate in any practice, conditioning, or weight-training with the team during suspension. The student-athlete will also be considered to have two strikes against him/her in regards to the VCSU Athletics Drug Policy. Any other refusal or failure to be tested and/or positive drug test will result in immediate and permanent suspension from further practices and competition without opportunity for further competition at Valley City State University. Loss of eligibility due to the above reasons may result in the inability to renew any athletic scholarships, and existing scholarships may be subject to cancellation as determined by Director of Athletics. 
 
Reasonable Suspicion
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 banned substance. 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, Assistant Athletic Trainer, or Team Physician, and deemed reliable by the Director of Athletics or his/her designee. Reasonable suspicion may be found, but not limited to
  1. observed possession or use of substances appearing to be prohibited drugs;
  2. arrest or conviction for a criminal offense;
  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.   

Disclosure of substance abuse/safe harbor
A student-athlete who has engaged in prohibited drug use is encouraged to seek assistance from the athletic training staff by voluntarily disclosing his or her use prior to an announced drug test. The athletic trainer will direct the student-athlete to medical services. 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 required to take a drug test immediately to establish a baseline for follow-up testing. A student-athlete will not be permitted to enter the Safe Harbor Program thirty (30) days prior to NAIA or Conference post-season competition. The student-athlete will be required to undergo an evaluation by the Valley City State University counselor. Valley City State University shall determine the appropriate form(s) of intervention and rehabilitation needed by the student-athlete, based on the circumstances of the case. The counselor will provide a summary of his or her findings and recommendations to the Director of Athletics. The 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 sports until the counselor has interviewed the student-athlete following the conclusion of the recommended treatment (or stage of treatment, as applicable) and has determined that reentry into intercollegiate sports is appropriate. If the counselor deems it necessary, the student-athlete will be required to undergo drug testing as part of the reentry evaluation.
  
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
 
Appeal Process
Student-athletes who test positive for a banned substance by the laboratory retained by the institution 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/designee will formally request the laboratory retained by Valley City State University to perform testing on 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 this policy 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 Director of Athletics or his/her designee.

The student-athlete may have an advocate or other representative present if the student so desires. However, the student-athlete must present his or her own case. The meeting should take place no more than seventy-two (72) hours after the written request is received. Either the student-athlete or the other parties involved 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 Director of Athletics or his/her designee regarding the sanction to be imposed shall be final.