Addiction Science - Tobacco Use in College | The National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse

Tobacco Use on College Campuses

Tobacco Use on College Campuses

In collaboration with Truth Initiative, The City University of New York (CUNY) and New York University (NYU), The National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse is examining trends in tobacco product use among young adults on college campuses in New York City. This project includes a survey of CUNY students and aims to develop tools to assess the effectiveness of tobacco-free policies on urban college campuses, as well the influence of neighboring stores that sell tobacco products, particularly e-cigarettes and hookah.

The Details

  • One of the objectives of this project is to create new or improve existing methods for assessing college campuses’ relationship with tobacco. The project will employ the use of surveys, focus groups and direct observations.
  • Another objective is to observe on urban college campuses how tobacco-free policies are enforced and whether students comply with the regulations. The type of advertisements and promotions of tobacco products surrounding those campuses will also be observed.
  • We are working closely with research investigators at NYU and the Schroeder Institute for Tobacco Research and Policy Studies at the Truth Initiative.
  • The project includes a survey of CUNY students about their tobacco product use with emphasis on non-cigarette nicotine products, like e-cigarettes and hookah.

Background

  • CUNY is the nation’s largest urban public university, enrolling nearly 270,000 students and almost 250,000 adult, continuing and professional education students at its 24 campuses throughout New York City. 
  • The number of young adults (18-24 years old) who start smoking cigarettes is on the rise, and as more young adults attend college, there is a greater need for college programs and policies to prevent tobacco and other nicotine product use.
  • While more campuses are implementing tobacco-free policies, the effectiveness of these policies at urban, non-residential colleges where there is a high concentration of tobacco retail outlets remains unknown.
  • While research has been conducted on the proximity of tobacco retailers, marketing and promotion near high schools, little attention has been paid to college campuses, an issue that is particularly important now given the expanded availability of non-cigarette nicotine products.

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