Penn State students tackle tobacco

University Park, Pa. — A new student-created video on YouTube reminds smokers that quitting is "in." The four-minute video, "Tackling Tobacco at Penn State," features interviews with Penn State students who share their honest opinions about the negative effects of smoking.
   
Health Policy and Administration students Tiana Lukas and Lisa Tubb created the piece as a class project for HealthWorks, an outreach program within University Health Services (UHS). Lukas and Tubb chose smoking as their topic because "the college years are when lifetime habits are formed, so students need to realize how bad smoking is for them so they can ensure a healthy future."

"The video does a great job of portraying Penn State students' candid thoughts about smoking," said Linda LaSalle, UHS associate director of educational services. Most interviewees in the video agree that smoking "smells bad" and "is bad for your teeth." One student asks, "Would you really want to kiss that?"

"Tackling Tobacco at Penn State" also dispels common misconceptions about the prevalence of smoking on campus. When asked what percentage of people on campus smoke, answers ranged from 35 to 100 percent. However, the most recent PULSE survey found that the number of student smokers at Penn State is actually around 25 percent.

UHS is now using the students' video as part of their Freedom From Smoking campaign. This seven-week program is designed to help students quit smoking and remain tobacco-free. UHS is offering the program twice during the spring semester; the first session begins Feb. 3. For additional information or to register contact UHS' Health Promotion and Wellness office at (814) 863-0461 or send an e-mail to promotinghealth@sa.psu.edu.

HealthWorks is a peer education/outreach group that aims to promote health among Penn State students. To learn more about HealthWorks, visit http://www.sa.psu.edu/uhs/wellness/hw.cfm or contact the Health Promotion and Wellness Office.

"Tackling Tobacco at Penn State" can be viewed on YouTube at ttp://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PWEeZOW_51k online.

Contacts: 
Last Updated February 17, 2010