On March 3, students will have the opportunity to show their support for the smoke-free campus policy by collecting cigarette trash around the main campus. This will be the third time that the Student Health Advisory Committee has hosted the event.
“We think it is important to keep the smoke-free policy visible” said Samantha Spiers, president of SHAC. “This is a fun event that allows students to show their support for a smoke-free campus.”
The four students collecting the most cigarette trash will be awarded $50 gift cards to Barnes and Noble. To participate, students should check-in at the smoke-free tent on the Student Union patio between the hours of 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. that day to pick up their supplies. Students return their collected trash to the tent where it is recorded by volume and then disposed of by Environmental Health and Safety. All participants will be given UCF smoke-free T-shirts, and the four winners will be notified the next day for prize pick up.
The smoke-free policy, which went into effect August 2012, bans smoking of any kind on campus. Since UCF went smoke-free, Valencia College, Florida State University and Seminole State College have also joined the more than 1,514 universities and colleges in the nation with smoke-free, or tobacco-free, policies in place. When UCF made the change, all out-door cigarette butt receptacles on campus were removed. Mary Schmidt-Owens, co-chair of the UCF Smoke-free Committee, said that keeping the receptacles would have sent conflicting messages, so it was decided to remove all receptacles on campus.
“We have stayed in close contact with the staff members at Environmental Health and Safety, and they report that cigarette trash is down from what it was pre-policy implementation,” said Schmidt-Owens. “The Health Center continues to offer smoking cessation support to all students, faculty and staff who are interested in quitting. New classes are starting all the time.”
For more information, call 407.823.2701 or visit: www.hs.ucf.edu.