UT Going Smoke-Free!?

The Proud Rocket
Rosaline Cordova
Originally Posted: 10/18/09

The rumors are true! UT is seriously considering going smoke-free for the 2010-2011 school year and in the future. There has been much debate about whether or not to push the ban, but since the Health Science Campus is smoke-free and from research on other Universities that are smoke-free, UT has decided that a smoke-free campus may not be such a bad thing. Personally, I would love to see a smoke-free campus. My maternal grandmother passed away from lung cancer from being a smoker for most of her life. Also, it is quite frusterating walking to class behind a smoker and having no choice but to breathe in the second hand smoke, or having to walk into buildings through a cloud of smoke. As a non-smoker, I can clearly see the positive aspects of a smoking ban.

However, there are smokers on campus who abide by the rule of, being 30 feet away from any building, and the University can not take away student’s right to smoke, but it can control if it is allowed on campus.

There will be a vote on your my-UT portal page, similar to how we voted for homecoming court, and students will be able to vote for three options: a complete smoking ban anywhere on  main campus, a partial ban where students can smoke only in designated smoking areas, or the option to keep campus how it is now and students can still smoke on campus.

This ban is being pushed by the alcohol, tobacco, and other drugs prevention committee headed by the director of residence life, Jo Campbell, and is being supported by the Division of Student affairs. UT wants its students to be healthy and have a healthy clean campus. UT is also a student centered institution because I mean afterall UT would not be here if it was not for the students! So voice your opinion! The Division of Student Affairs is having a series of Student Speak Forums where students can go and share their opinions and ideas about anything here on campus, and if you have a strong opinion on the smoking ban, this would be the perfect place to do so! The next two meetings are Tuesday, November 17th from 7-8pm in the Student Union, room is TBA, and the second upcoming meeting is Wednesday, December 9th 1-2pm in the Student Union, room is TBA.

This is a very big deal on our campus, as it will effect every Rocket and all of the future Rockets to come. I hope that all students participate in the voting, and take the opportunity to voice their opinions when appropriate.


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