By Chantel Varges
As of Sept. 1, 2017, CSU Bakersfield has been a smoke free campus, and 10 people have already quit smoking.
In a memo that was sent out by President Horace Mitchell of CSUB, in the beginning of the semester, it stated,
“CSU Bakersfield is committed to a healthy and pleasant environment where everyone who works and studies at our campus can breathe freely.”
The change in policy was made in hopes of establishing a healthier environment for the entire campus community. The policy was created and implemented by the Smoke Free Implementation Committee.
The hopes of Mitchell and the committee were successful.
The triumph of the school transitioning into a smoke free campus has resulted in six CSUB students and four staff members quitting smoking as of Sept. 1.
On Nov. 22, more than a month after the campaing started, the Business and Administrative Services Office of Human Resources sent out a memorandum. It shared that those students and staff members who successfully stopped smoking received a $10 Starbucks gift card.
Smoke free means that the use of cigarettes, pipes, cigars, e-cigarettes, vapor devices, and other tobacco products are prohibited.
Ashlee Bowen, a sophomore psychology major, shared her feelings on the campus becoming smoke free.
“I think it’s a good thing, even though I smoke. The campus smells fresher and the ground is even a lot cleaner, without all the cigarettes on the floor,” said Bowen.
The Kern County Public Health Services Department has a Tobacco Education Program. The program goal is, “to promote tobacco-free living through education, outreach and technical education, access to cessation services, and the promotion of tobacco-free policies and practices.”
According to the International Association for the Study of Lung Cancer, “80-90% of lung cancer deaths could be completely avoided if people did not smoke cigarettes.”
Lauren Ashman, who is the health educator in the student health services, is happy to see that CSUB and the entire CSU system has become smoke and tobacco free.
“Student Health Services is here to support students who want to quit smoking,
Our physicians are available for smoking cessation visits and treatment, including the use of medications, which can be filled at the SHS pharmacy. The SHS pharmacy also offers FDA approved nicotine-replacement therapy products,
“Additionally, as the Health Educator, I offer a smoking cessation support group every semester, and I am also available for one-on-one smoking cessation counseling, which includes a discussion of cessation methods.”
Stay tuned for the next online issue to read more about the journeys of people who have quit smoking.