West Kentucky Community and Technical College is committed to providing students, employees and visitors with a safe and healthy environment. In light of this commitment, the college became a tobacco-free institution on August 1, 2015.
We hope to improve the lives of all students, faculty, staff, and visitors that enter our campus, and we strive to be a model for the larger community. Some of the reasons we have chosen to adopt this policy are to:
- Eliminate harmful exposure to second-hand smoke on campus
- Decrease the amount of tobacco litter on school grounds
- Offer a positive and healthy environment for underage students and visitors that frequent campus
- Better prepare students for transitions into four-year institutions and the workforce
- Supply necessary support for those who struggle with addiction or stress management
- Provide a safe and healthy environment for everyone to work and learn
WKCTC began its tobacco-free plans in fall 2014 with the development of a committee that consisted of faculty, staff and students that conducted extensive research over the past year to create a comprehensive tobacco-free proposal for the campus. WKCTC faculty and staff passed the proposal during the October 2014 meeting.
In preparation for August 1, the college is offering a variety of cessation classes
in spring 2015 to promote the health and well-being of its students, faculty and staff,
as well as community members. We want to help make the transition easier for everyone
on campus to become and stay tobacco-free, said Tammy Thompson, WKCTC public relations
WKCTC's tobacco-free policy will include all forms of tobacco, including, but not limited to, cigarettes, cigars, pipes, vaporizing devices, electronic cigarettes and smokeless tobacco products on any campus property. At this time, the policy will not be enforced in the passenger compartments of private automobiles. Tobacco litter is not permitted outside vehicles.
"When you look at the health of our region, western Kentucky, and you look at the health numbers of Kentucky as a whole, it is absolutely the right thing to do for our students," said Dr. Anton Reece, WKCTC president. "It's important for us to set an example of how we can best live our lives healthy, professionally for the entire well-being of our community. This is a very positive step on the part of the college."
Currently, there are more than 900 regional colleges and universities that are 100% tobacco-free. Campuses in Kentucky that are tobacco-free include, Bellarmine University, Morehead University, Northern Kentucky University, University of Kentucky, University of Louisville and the many of the community colleges in the Kentucky Community and Technical College System.
WKCTC's Tobacco-Free Campus Web page provides additional information about the policy and procedures and on and off campus resources for those wishing to stop using tobacco. The policy is in its initial phase of implementation and will be refined, along with this site, throughout the coming year.