Site Content

Know the Law

It’s important for Wake Forest students to understand North Carolina law and the Wake Forest Code of Conduct. In this section of the site, we’ve summarized particular aspects of each of those for you. This is not a comprehensive list, but a starting point.

University Conduct Standards Regarding Off Campus Activities

Rule 16

Wake Forest students are responsible for conducting themselves to avoid bringing disrepute to the University. Conduct or activity by members of the student body living in, or hosting functions at, off-campus locations which has the effect of unreasonably interfering with the rights of neighbors is prohibited. This standard of conduct recognizes and affirms a responsibility to respect the rights of others appropriate to the setting in which one lives. It also recognizes the duty of Wake Forest students who are residents of off-campus rooms/apartments/houses to control the nature and size of activities carried out in or on their premises consistent with the standards of the University. Disruptive off-campus social functions at single family residences are subject to University review and sanctions. Individual students, groups of students, and student organizations may be held accountable for hosting disruptive events, parties or social functions.

Ongoing Review and Sanctioning

Throughout the semester, the Offices of the Dean of Student Services and Residence Life and Housing will review the behaviors of students residing off- campus. Police reports generated by the City of Winston-Salem Police Department (WSPD) or Wake Forest University Police Department (WFPD) will be forwarded to the Dean of Student Services Office who will provide copies to Residence Life and Housing.

Depending upon the severity of the interaction with either police department, the first report of police action would more than likely result in a warning letter to be generated from Residence Life and Housing. This letter, copied to the Office of the Dean Student Services, would outline the behavioral issues in question and the consequences of further police action. This letter would be sent to all students who reside in the house in which action of the police were required (regardless of their presence).

Action by either police department on a second occasion (depending upon the severity) would more than likely result in the revocation of off-campus housing privileges immediately for the student(s) under their current arrangements (i.e. single-family unit dwellings or house). Revocation of these privileges would cause the students of said house to break their lease with the Landlord, in accordance to the Landlord and Student’s Agreement. Once this occurs, the student submits and either requests to live in a multi-family dwelling or return to campus housing (if space is available via the Non-Residential Student Wait List). If the students of the house were underclassmen, these students would lose the privilege of off-campus living in a single-family dwelling. If the students are seniors, the Dean of Student Services Office may employ an alternative sanction.

Any cases involving Rule 16 in the Student Handbook will be heard by the Associate Vice-President and Dean of Student Services, or his/her designee, and may be appealed to the Judicial Council within the student judicial system for individuals, and the Student Life Committee for student organizations.

University Jurisdiction and Scope of Review

Residence off-campus by students of Wake Forest University is a privilege which carries responsibilities. Wake Forest regulates student eligibility to reside off-campus for purposes appropriate to its educational mission. Therefore, Wake Forest University requires that undergraduate students have continuing eligibility under University Housing regulations to live in an off-campus location.

At the University’s discretion, all complaints of alleged student misconduct will be reviewed by the appropriate University authority. Cases deemed as potential violations will be processed within the guidelines set forth in the Student Code of Conduct. As such, final authority for case resolution rests with the University. As a member of the University Area Community Partnership, Wake Forest University will serve as a liaison between members of the local community and the City of Winston-Salem for issues relating to city ordinances or related matters.

Single Family Residences: Guidelines for Students

  • Students who have incurred a judicial history with the Office of the Dean of Student Services will not be eligible to reside off campus in single family dwellings.
  • Students must obey all NC state statutes concerning the consumption, purchase, and distribution of alcohol.
  • Students must obey all city noise ordinance regulations.
  • Students must not disturb the peace or flow of traffic in the neighborhood, keeping a reasonable standard in mind.
  • Violations will be addressed in a judicial hearing if instances are referred to the Dean of Student Services Office by the Wake Forest University Police Department or the Winston-Salem Police Department.


Violations of these policies will result in sanctions for individuals and groups.

  • 1st occurrence:For individuals: $200.00 fine, For Groups: $400.00 fine, warning, parental and landlord (or property manager) notification.
  • 2nd occurrence:For individuals: Loss of single family housing privileges immediately upon notice of violation, For Groups: Up to, and including loss of lounge use, loss of a pledge class, and charter revocation.

Group Responsibility Standard:

Student organizations which are reasonably perceived as hosting a disruptive party in a single family residential neighborhood will be subject to group sanctions. Greek organizations may be subject to group sanctions, including loss of a pledge class. Activities or events which are reasonably perceived as a substantial risk to the safety, health, and wellbeing of students will result in disciplinary consequences, including loss of off-campus housing, block housing, lounges, or other organizational privileges. Hazing will result in group sanctions which may include the loss of University recognition. An extended pledge or new member education period beyond the approved six-week timeframe will result in loss of a pledge class.

Group Social Events Policy

The University encourages all groups to host social functions on campus. Social events on campus allow for increased safety and better management, while avoiding the risks associated with traveling to off campus locations. Problematic behaviors are more often associated with off campus venues and the resulting interaction with local and state law enforcement agencies.

Expectations for Group Social Events

Tier One: The University offers funding to support on campus activities. This funding may be applied for through the Party Smart website. The University allows groups to manage their own parties in accord with the law and their own national policies if applicable, and within reasonable standards of safety and security. Parties on campus are subject to the authority of the Wake Forest University Police.

Tier Two: When on campus events are not feasible, the University expects that student organizations will host events atoff campus locations with appropriate certifications, insurance and security, within the Winston-Salem city limits.

Tier Three: Attendance at off campus parties in single family residences sponsored by an individual or a group must not unreasonably interfere with the rights of neighbors. This standard of conduct recognizes and affirms a responsibility to respect the rights of others appropriate to the setting in which one lives. It also recognizes the duty of Wake Forest students who are residents of off-campus rooms/apartments/houses to control the nature and size of activities carried out in or on their premises consistent with the standards of the University.

Social Standards Guidelines:

  • Events held off campus are not permitted at locations with a history of non-compliance.
  • Off campus events must be held within the City of Winston-Salem.
  • No major events will be held at an off campus location (e.g. Pledge Night).
  • No organizations or individuals will participate in, or endorse, Senior Fifth or Kiss Night.
  • No students will engage in acts reasonably perceived to be involved in the degradation of students, such as body markings.

North Carolina Alcohol Regulations

North Carolina Alcohol Laws

  • The legal drinking age in North Carolina is 21.
  • If you’re under 21, purchase or attempted purchase of liquor is illegal. The penalties include fines and court costs and possible imprisonment.
  • If you’re under 19, possession, purchase or attempted purchase of beer or wine carries penalties of fines and court costs, and possible imprisonment.
  • If you help an underage person buy alcohol, or buy it for them, you face a fine, court costs, possible imprisonment, and lose your drivers license for a year. If you’re over 21 and do this, you can be fined up to $2000.
  • Using a fake ID is illegal. People found to be in possession of a fake ID can have their drivers’ license suspended.

Alcohol Law Enforcement enforces laws that deal with the sale, purchase, transportation, manufacture, consumption, and possession of alcoholic beverages in the state. More information on this state agency can be found on their website