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Florida students: Suspension for possession marijuana

A certain amount of medical marijuana is legal in Florida. However, marijuana for recreational purposes is still illegal, and people can face serious repercussions for holding onto even a small amount of the substance. In recent years, Florida has made new laws to limit the repercussions on kids younger than 18 who are guilty of marijuana possession. Today, students may only have to pay a fine, which helps them avoid jail time that could impact their careers later in life. Students should keep in mind that while legal repercussions have diminished, they will also likely face consequences from their schools. 

As of 2018, recreational marijuana is illegal in Florida. That does not stop high school and college students from acquiring it for parties or personal use. If nothing else, these students need to consider their educational career before police discover that they are in possession of an illegal substance. 

Policies at Florida universities

Both the University of South Florida and the University of Tampa have strict policies about what to do with students caught with marijuana. At the University of Tampa, a student can lose his or her on-campus housing and go onto "pending suspension" status that can go away if the student completes a drug assessment course. This is merely for a first offense. A second offense can result in suspension or expulsion. 

At the University of South Florida, a student may not face full-on suspension, but the university may prevent that student from taking part in certain clubs and activities. High schools also have their own set of guidelines. Private institutions, particularly those affiliated with a certain religion, may be extremely strict on students caught with marijuana regardless of whether they were on campus when the violation took place. The punishments become more severe if the police catch the student in possession of stronger drugs, such as cocaine or opioids. 

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