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Among college-age Americans aged 18-25, 35% were current tobacco users according to the 2014 National Survey on Drug Use and Health. This included both collegiate and non-collegiate young people. A rising trend is that of the social smoker: one who smokes in a social setting, typically mixed with alcohol or other drug use. Half or more of college smokers say they are “social” smokers but, over the course of a four-year college period, one in five of these “social” smokers become daily users. College students perceive that tobacco use is more prevalent than it actually is, and the tobacco industry has aggressively targeted this group with the goal of making smoking the social norm. New tobacco products are rising in popularity among college students, including hookah, flavored cigarettes, little cigars, vapes, and e-cigarettes. However, many colleges are instituting tobacco-free campus policies to provide a healthy environment and encourage this lifestyle for students.

Web Resources




Case Studies

  • An Assessment of America’s Tobacco-Free Colleges and Universities
    This study examined the extent to which US campuses identified as “100% tobacco-free” by the American Lung Association of Oregon adhered to the American College Health Association’s the most recent guidelines and recommendations promoting tobacco-free environments in colleges and universities.
  • Campus Examples—College Tobacco Prevention Resource
    CTPR provides in depth case studies that provide a wealth of details about both the policies and the process of campus tobacco prevention from the perspective of the college health service personnel and others who made it happen.