Whether you are thinking about enrolling at the University of Wisconsin or have been a student for a couple years, you likely know that Madison has somewhat of a reputation for being a party town. This makes sense, as the city has numerous bars, restaurants and entertainment venues. While there is nothing inherently wrong with enjoying the collegiate experience, you should never drink and drive. 

In the Badger State, it is illegal to operate a motor vehicle if you have a blood alcohol concentration over 0.08%. While you may know about the potential criminal liability of drunk driving, you may not realize that your university career may also be in jeopardy. Here are a few ways that drunk driving may affect your tenure at UW: 

Campus police enforcement 

Campus police are not mall cops. On the contrary, officers have the same enforcement authority as Madison police, state troopers and other uniformed officers. Therefore, if you drink and drive on campus, UW officers may place you in handcuffs. Furthermore, you may lose your driving privileges for the foreseeable future. 

Academic suspension or expulsion 

The UW Dean of Students enforces the university’s academic code of conduct. Engaging in bad behaviors or criminal conduct may result in academic suspension or expulsion. Accordingly, drinking and driving may leave you without the degree you came to Madison to pursue. 

Detox commitment 

If you are drunk on campus, UW police officers may transport you to a detox facility. The minimum stay in detox for students is 12 hours. If you have to sober up in the facility instead of taking a final exam, you may have to devote time, money and energy to repeating the course. Also, UW authorities may notify your parents. 

Even though Madison has dozens of places where you can enjoy yourself, drinking and driving is never acceptable. If you decide to climb behind the wheel after consuming alcohol, though, your hangover may involve more than just a bad headache.