American Cancer Society, CVS Health Foundation Award CSU, Chico $20,000 Grant to Support Tobacco-Free Campus

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Date: 09-19-2017

Sean Murphy, Public Affairs
TEL: 530-898-6492
Trisha Seastrom, CADEC
TEL: 530-898-4106

The American Cancer Society announced today that it has awarded California State University, Chico a $20,000 grant as part of its Tobacco-Free Generation Campus Initiative. 

The initiative is a partnership between the American Cancer Society and the CVS Health Foundation’s “Be the First” campaign, as part of the foundation’s five-year, $50-million commitment to delivering the nation’s first tobacco-free generation. In reducing tobacco usage among college students, who are a particularly susceptible age to developing a tobacco addiction, the Tobacco-Free Generation Campus Initiative aims to see a drop in the number of people who get sick with and die from tobacco-related diseases.

CSU, Chico, which went smoke- and tobacco-free last month along with the rest of the California State University system, is one of 126 campuses nationwide chosen by the American Cancer Society to receive the grant.

Trisha Seastrom, program director at the University’s Campus Alcohol and Drug Education Center (CADEC), said the new campus policy and grant efforts are focused on prevention, education and providing free assistance to those who choose to quit.

“Our goals include improving the health and wellness of our campus community and the campus environment we all share,” Seastrom said. “We are wholeheartedly committed to providing free and ongoing support to those interested in quitting.”

According to a new CVS Health survey, public support for smoke- and tobacco-free campus policies remains strong. Results reveal that nearly three in four Americans (73 percent) and eight in 10 current U.S. college students (78 percent) indicated their support for policies that prohibit smoking and other tobacco use on college campuses. At the same time, 57 percent of U.S. college students say a tobacco-free campus is important to them when considering applying to or attending a college.

CSU, Chico’s adoption of a smoke- and tobacco-free policy means that smoking, the use of smokeless tobacco products and the use of unregulated nicotine products such as e-cigarettes or “vaping” are prohibited in indoor and outdoor spaces, including parking lots, sidewalks and both on- and off-campus University housing grounds.

This policy applies to all Chico State and auxiliary-owned, rented, or leased facilities on campus and at satellite locations, such as the University Farm and the Big Chico Creek Ecological Reserve. It applies to all faculty, staff, students, volunteers, contractors, visitors, and anyone entering onto University-controlled properties. It is applicable 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

Among other uses, the grant funding supports CADEC cessation programs, including a range of free, comprehensive smoking cessation programs for students, faculty, and staff. And in conjunction with Human Resources, CADEC also provides employees with smoking-cessation education programming and counseling that may assist those who choose to quit or reduce their tobacco use.

Bidisha Sinha, director of Tobacco Control Initiatives at the American Cancer Society’s Center for Tobacco Control, said CSU, Chico’s previous attempts to adopt tobacco-free policies on campus were backed by senior level administration, which helped propel the University’s chances of getting grant funding.

“CSU, Chico also demonstrated student involvement in the project and included a detailed workplan, all of which helped give [the] application high marks,” Sinha said.

The American Cancer Society collaborated with the CVS Health Foundation, which funded the grant, and The Truth Initiative, which has a similar program also funded by the CVS Health Foundation.

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About California State University, Chico

California State University, Chico is the second-oldest campus in the 23-member CSU system, the nation’s largest public university system. Founded in 1887, Chico State enrolls approximately 17,500 students and offers more than 230 undergraduate and graduate programs through its seven colleges and five schools. The campus is consistently ranked as one of the best regional public universities in the Western United States, and is the only CSU campus to have earned a favorable rating in all five categories of the U.S. Department of Education’s College Scoreboard, which rates universities on affordability and value. Its mission includes a broad commitment to environmental sustainability, public service and community engagement throughout the 12-county North State region where the campus is located. The University became a federal Hispanic-Serving Institution in 2015.