College joins other smoke- and tobacco-free campuses nationwide
Nov 13, 2015
Beginning December 1, 2015, North Central College will initiate its smoke- and tobacco-free policy on campus. The College will join more than 1,000 other smoke- and tobacco-free campuses nationwide.
The State of Illinois passed a Smoke-Free Campus Act requiring all public colleges to become smoke-free by July 1, 2015. Backed by student surveys and research conducted by the College’s Student Governing Association, North Central is supporting this trend in higher education as a private institution. The College’s commitment to environmental sustainability, health and wellness motivated this policy.
The smoke- and tobacco-free policy includes any smoke-producing tobacco products, smokeless tobacco products and electronic smoking devices. The policy covers all areas of the College campus, including owned and leased buildings and grounds. Students, employees and visitors can use tobacco products on any city-owned street and sidewalk. Smoking urns will be located around the perimeter of campus to accommodate this change.
“I think a smoke- and tobacco-free policy makes a statement about the College’s commitment to the health and well-being of our students, staff, faculty and guests,” says Jeremy Gudauskas, associate dean of students. “The process for making this policy shift shows that we are responsive to the desires and requests of our student-leaders and student body. Our student government did a terrific job taking on this issue and creating a proposal for a policy change.”
Adds Brittany Graham, sustainability coordinator: “Cigarette butts are the No. 1 item littered around campus and across the United States. They may be carried as runoff when it rains, eventually getting to rivers, lakes and ultimately the oceans. People smoking on campus also puts harmful pollutants in the air and negatively affects the health of everyone around it.”
This policy does not require students, faculty and staff to quit smoking, but only asks that they refrain from smoking on campus. If members of the campus community are interested in quitting, the Dyson Wellness Center offers smoking cessation resources and the College provides list of additional resources here.
Each individual on campus shares the responsibility of enforcing the policy. Members of the campus community are encouraged to politely inform others about the policy when encountering someone who is smoking or using tobacco products. To report a concern, notify the nearest College representative or email email@example.com. Refusal to comply with the policy may result in disciplinary action in accordance with employee and/or student conduct policies.
For detailed information on the policy, including full definitions of prohibited products, a smoke-and tobacco-free campus map and exclusions to the policy, visit northcentralcollege.edu/smokefreeNC. To request written information regarding the policy, email firstname.lastname@example.org.