Bentley University will join more than 1,475 colleges and universities in the United States in becoming a smoke-free campus. This policy will go into effect June 1st 2016 and will also include the use of electronic delivery devices such as e-cigarettes. A great deal of thought and preparation has gone into this decision. A task force consisting of faculty, staff and student representatives was formed in August 2014 to investigate campus readiness and the effect of smoking on our community.
Smoke-free policies are ethically and socially responsible. This policy will create a healthier living and learning environment for our students, faculty, staff and visitors by limiting exposure to secondhand smoke. Several years ago the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services launched a Tobacco-Free College Campus Initiative. Since 99% of smokers begin using prior to the age of 26, colleges and universities are a critical point of prevention. We have closely monitored the progress of this nationwide initiative and feel now is the time to support it.
In addition to the clear health benefits, becoming a smoke-free campus also supports our commitment to the environment as it will reduce the amount of cigarette-related litter and tobacco waste on our campus.
In November 2014 a campus-wide "Tobacco Policy Opinion Survey" was distributed to the community. In total, 1,833 (37% response rate) students and 403 (33% response rate) faculty and staff participated.
* 1/2 of students and 1/3 of faculty and staff also report exposure to secondhand smoke even in indoor locations on campus.
* 75% of non-tobacco users support this policy change and tobacco users support it too.
Task force members are available to meet with campus departments, student groups and visit classrooms to provide information about the policy. Simply email firstname.lastname@example.org to request a meeting or presentation.
Also please check the events page periodically for a list of planned information sessions and programs.