UW-Madison Alcoholic Beverage Policy

A UW Regent administrative rule prohibits the possession of open containers of alcoholic beverages and the consumption of such beverages on campus unless specifically permitted. Under the rule, each UW System campus is required to establish institution-specific regulations for permitting alcoholic beverage possession and consumption.

Alcohol Beverage Service Permits

The new UW-Madison alcohol policy is now in effect for any events held on January 21, 2014 or later. Event organizers must complete responsible employee training and apply for an alcohol beverage service permit. 

Please be aware that Mehdi Rezai is the L&S "designated authorized official" or Dean's Designee, responsible for review and approval of alcohol permit requests for University events sponsored through departments and programs in the College of Letters and Science.  Please enter his name in the appropriate fields in the online permit system (Mehdi Rezai should be entered in the field labeled "Name of Authorized University Official Approving Permit " - his email address is Mehdi Rezai <mehdi.rezai@wisc.edu></mehdi.rezai@wisc.edu>).

Please Do Not submit alcohol permit requests to Interim Dean Wilcots or others in L&S Administration. Doing so may delay your request.

All permit requests to the L&S Dean's Office need to be limited to campus buildings/facilities operated by the College of Letters and Science, as well as off-campus facilities (i.e., an employee's residence). Campus buildings/facilities operated by other divisions must be contacted for alcohol permits.

Please make every effort to allow at least one week for lead time (one week prior to the event) which will allow time for review, possible follow-up and approval.  You will automatically be notified via email when your  request is approved (or denied).


Units can procure and provide their own alcohol beverages if they obtain an Alcohol Beverage Service Permit. The event must be attended by no more than 150 people. Individuals interested in hosting larger and/or longer events should contact an on-campus or off-campus caterer for arrangements.    

A responsible employee who has completed the required campus training must sign the permit, be present at the event, and be responsible for the alcohol service, in compliance with the requirements listed below. The permit must be approved by both an authorized University official, in most cases the area Dean or Director (Mehdi Rezai should be entered in the field labeled "Name of Authorized University Official Approving Permit" - his email address is Mehdi Rezai <mehdi.rezai@wisc.edu></mehdi.rezai@wisc.edu>), and by the facility. Undergraduate student organizations are not permitted to obtain an alcohol beverage service permit. The Alcohol Beverage Permit Checklist has been developed to assist units in planning such events.

Alcohol Beverage Permit Checklist

  • One responsible employee for the first 50 attendees. One additional responsible employee for each additional 25 attendees.
  • Attendees less than 150 persons
  • Food and non-alcohol beverages available
  • Appropriate size clear plastic cups available, 8 oz. for serving wine. Beer served in individual cans or bottles no larger than 12 oz.; No other alcohol beverages will be offered.
  • Responsible Employee available:
    • Employee with a faculty, limited, academic staff or university staff appointment who is age 21 or over (or a graduate or professional student for events hosted by and for graduate and professional students).
    • Completed Responsible Employee Training
    • Sign Alcohol Beverage Service Permit
    • Agrees to perform responsible duties including to:
      • Remain present at all times during the event
      • Ensure the conditions of the permit are followed
      • Ensure intoxicated individuals do not consume alcohol
      • Prevent consumption by individuals below the Minimum Legal Drinking Age (MLDA)
      • Maintain control of the alcohol beverages at all times and secure them at the conclusion of the event.
    • Agrees not to consume alcohol during event
  • Procedures in place to prevent consumption of alcohol beverages by persons below the MLDA
    • All attendees are above the MLDA, or
    • ID checked for all attendees below 30 and wristbands/name tags used to indicate age.
  • UW-Madison Alcohol Beverage Responsibility Sign displayed
  • Alcohol Beverage Service Permit signed by Authorized University Official 

Alcohol Beverage Service Permits

UW-Madison Alcohol Beverage Regulations

See attached for New Campus Alcohol Policy in December 2013 memo from Dean Scholz.

See attached for Update on Revised UW-Madison Alcohol Policy in January 2014 memo.

KeywordsAlcohol, beverages, receptions, meals   Doc ID22631
OwnerSandy P.GroupL&S KB
Created2012-02-13 13:45 CDTUpdated2023-06-06 08:15 CDT
SitesL&S KB
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