Frequently Asked Questions

Why is College of DuPage Tobacco Free?

COD takes very seriously the health and safety of its employees, students and campus visitors. Research continues to show that the use of cigarettes, smokeless tobacco and tobacco use in general, including secondhand smoke, constitutes a significant health risk. The U.S. Surgeon General has determined that the health effects of secondhand smoke are even more pervasive than previously thought.   In addition to the health related illnesses, the use of tobacco products contributes to the institutional costs in other ways such as cleaning and maintenance costs, fire damage and costs associated with absenteeism, health care and medical insurance costs.  For these reasons, College of DuPage went tobacco free as of August 6, 2012. 

Instead of moving to Tobacco Free, why doesn’t the College enforce the current policy of no smoking within 25 feet of the marked doorways?

The College has received many complaints about the designated smoking rule from students, employees and community members who have to walk through those areas in order to enter the building. Those employees who suffer from respiratory illnesses or who are otherwise adversely affected by walking through these smoky areas have been complaining about their increased health risks. In addition, according to the World Health Organization, there is no safe level of secondhand smoke and the only effective way to protect others is to establish 100% smoke free environments.

In the past few years, there has been talk about moving the designated smoking areas farther away from the buildings but this was never done. Why?

Discussions were held about creating designated smoking areas with canopies. These areas would have been farther away from the doorways, but in the end, the health and safety of students, employees and community members put the focus on moving toward Tobacco Free.  

What does Tobacco Free mean?

Tobacco Free means that College of DuPage prohibits the use of all tobacco products, including cigarettes, cigars, pipes, smokeless tobacco and electronic cigarettes on College of DuPage campus and satellite campuses. In addition to all buildings, it applies to all outside property and grounds and College owned vehicles.

Isn’t it my right to use tobacco?

Tobacco is a legal product that can be purchased and possessed at the discretion of any adult. However, the use of tobacco is subject to restrictions as evidenced by the number of restrictions that have been put in place by state laws as well as businesses and organizations throughout the state and the country. COD is not taking away anyone’s right to smoke or purchase or possess tobacco products. However, people are not be allowed to use them on campus.

Can I smoke in my car if it’s parked on campus?

Yes, while use of tobacco products is prohibited on College of DuPage property, students, employees and community members may smoke inside their own vehicles as long as the doors and windows of the vehicle remain closed.

Are there any other Tobacco-Free colleges or universities?

Yes, more than 684 colleges and universities across the United States are implementing stricter smoking and tobacco-free policies to reduce the harmful effects of smoking, smokeless tobacco and secondhand smoke in public places. 

Won’t this policy affect enrollment?

No. Surveys consistently show that most students would prefer to attend a tobacco-free college. There is no evidence that enrollment has declined at any of the institutions that have adopted a tobacco-free policy.

Does the policy apply to visitors on campus?

Yes, organizers and attendees at public events, such as conferences, meetings, lectures, social events, sporting events and customers at the Wheat Café and Waterleaf Restaurant as well as the Inn at Water’s Edge, and the MAC are required to comply with the Tobacco-Free policy. Organizers of those events are responsible for communicating the policy to attendees.

If I have additional questions or concerns about this issue, who do I contact?

Contact Sue Martin, Dean of Student Affairs, at