Great American Smoke Out Highlights New Smoking Policy at Syracuse University

Nov 20, 2014

The Great American Smoke Out, which urged smokers Thursday to kick the habit, coincides with the recently released expansion of Syracuse University’s “Smoke-Free” Policy. Starting next July, use of tobacco products and vaporizers will be prohibited outdoors on campus. Temporary exceptions will be made, however, for the Carrier Dome, Sheraton Hotel, Syracuse Stage, and Drumlins.

Students set up an informational and interactive table at the Schine Student Center urging passersby to sign a banner in support of the policy. In exchange for their signatures, those who sign were given a “cold-turkey” sandwich. Health Services intern Amy Hong says more than 100 people had added their signatures to the petition as of the early afternoon.

Students turned out in greater-than-expected numbers to sign a banner in support of a smoking ban on Syracuse's campus during the Great American Smoke Out
Credit (c) Scott Willis, WAER.

We also have some people who are trying to quit, and want to learn about the policy. So they haven’t signed this banner yet, but they’re willing to learn more, which is great. We’re now in a 10-day period where students, faculty, and staff are able to email wellness@syr.edu to give their comments and opinions about the policy before it’s official,” the public health student said Thursday during the smokeout.

Hong’s classmate Minkyo Sur also participated in the Smoke Out, dressing up in the hopes that it will draw attention to the cause.

I volunteered myself to dress up as a cigarette and promote the Great American Smoke Out so the students here can be more aware of the harmful effects of smoking cigarettes,” Sur said.

Sur hopes their efforts will convince some smokers to receive help and ultimately quit. Tobacco use continues to be the leading cause of preventable death in the United States.