Substance Abuse Prevention

The Counseling and Wellness Center provides confidential and non-judgmental support to students who want to talk about issues regarding alcohol or other substances. If your concern is for yourself, a roommate, or someone you care about, we can help. We offer referral options, sobriety and risk reduction support to anyone seeking positive change. We can help sort out any confusion you may have regarding the role substances may be playing in your life. We provide free voluntary services to all Western students and we coordinate enrollment in an evidence-based program that is part of the fulfillment of sanctions required by the University for students who have violated Western's alcohol and other drug policies.

Medical Amnesty Law

An alcohol or drug overdose is a medical emergency that requires immediate attention. 

The Medical Amnesty Law protects you and the person who needs help from being cited for underage drinking, so call 911 and save a life! 

Medical Amnesty Info


The Counseling and Wellness Center offers educational sessions on alcohol and cannabis use with a focus on harm reduction, social norming, effects on the body and mind, and resources for students who would like to address substance use concerns. These sessions are open to all students and meet requirements for Office of Student Life and Residence Life referrals.

Cannabis Workshop

In the cannabis workshop, participants will learn about:

  • What cannabis is
  • The effects of cannabis and how it works in the brain
  • Common misperceptions
  • Campus data on cannabis use
  • Potential risks of cannabis use
  • Harm reduction strategies

The cannabis workshop for fall quarter 2023 will be held Friday, December 1, 3-4:30 PM in Old Main 435. Registration is required.

Register for 12/1/23 Cannabis Training

Alcohol Workshop

In the alcohol workshop, participants will learn about:

  • Standard serving size
  • Blood alcohol level/content
  • The body's response to alcohol and tolerance
  • Recognizing and responding to an alcohol emergency 
  • Harm reduction strategies
  • Potential long-term academic and health risks

The alcohol workshops for fall quarter 2023 will be held Friday, October 27 and December 8, 3-4:30 PM in Old Main 435. Registration is required.

Register for 10/27/23 Alcohol Training

Register for 12/8/23 Alcohol Training

Self-Paced Training
& Worksheets

eCheckup To Go

The eCheckup To Go training is intended to help you increase your self-awareness, explore your options, and make informed choices, should you choose to use alcohol, cannabis, or nicotine. Western is deeply committed to the greatest health, well-being, and safety of all our students, and we hope you find the training valuable.

T-Break Guide

Dryish January Guide

Recovery and Treatment Options

Prescription Drug Disposal

Help keep our community safe!

Safely dispose of your unused and expired medications.

A salmon in water

Protect Our Waterways

Tossing and flushing prescription drugs puts harmful chemicals into
our water supply.

A prescription bottle tilted to the left on a green background

Prevent Misuse

Drug abuse and addiction can begin with the misuse of other people’s prescription drugs.

A heart held by two hands

Save a Life

Prescription drug overdoses and suicide by prescription drugs
are preventable.

Prescription Drug Disposal Options

Order a Deterra pouch using the form below for safe home disposal OR drop off your medications to any one of the safe and secure drop-off locations in Bellingham:

  • WWU Police Department
  • Bellingham Police Department
  • Hoagland Pharmacy
  • All Rite-Aid locations
  • Kaiser Pharmacy
  • Whatcom County Health Dept
  • Bellingham Public Library

Required fields are marked with an asterisk (*).

Unwanted and unused prescription drugs pose a risk of abuse and accidental poisoning, however, proper disposal is essential to protect the environment. Deterra pouches contain a water-soluble inner pod of activated carbon that renders prescription drugs—pills, patches, liquids, creams, and films—inert.

Please use this form to order one (1) Deterra drug disposal pouch.

Deterra pouches are available while supplies last. Limit of 1 per household due to our limited supply. Please email Gwen Koenig if you need more supplies 

You may also dispose of your unwanted/unused prescription medications by dropping them off at the Prescription Drug Take Back Box located on the 1st floor of Western's Campus Services building.

NOTE: Deterra pouches are not for use with RCRA-listed drugs. Learn more about the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) Laws and Regulations.
Current Mailing Address
Deterra drug disposal pouch request
If you have any questions or special requests pertaining to your order please share below.