Students, faculty, staff and visitors are now prohibited from using electronic cigarettes or any other tobacco products on all WVU campuses under the new tobacco- and smoke-free campus rule that went into effect Aug. 1.

While WVU’s Morgantown campus has been tobacco free since 2013 under the Board of Governors Policy 57, the Board of Governors decided in February to expand the prohibitions in the original policy.

Now, under the Board of Governors Finance and Administration Rule 5.6- Tobacco-and-Smoke-Free Campus, smoking, which includes e-cigarettes and vapor products, is prohibited on WVU property.

“We want to be a tobacco, vape-free and smoke-free community to promote [the] health of everyone,” said Rocco Fucillo, state and local relations specialist. 

Fucillo said a task force of people representing every community on campus was created to add additional details to the previous tobacco-free campus rule and enforce the new prohibitions.

Fucillo said that in 2018, the administration voiced its concern about the lack of enforcement under the current policy at the time.

Under the new rule, enforcement will be more strict.

The University has established several different enforcement methods:

For students:

First offense- the student will be issued a notice of policy violation.

Second offense- the student will be issued a notice of policy violation and the Office of Student Conduct will be notified.

Third Offense- the student will be issued a notice of policy violation, the Office of Student Conduct and WellWVU will be notified and a tobacco cessation opportunity will be offered.

For Faculty and Staff:

First offense- faculty or staff will be issued a notice of policy violation.

Second offense- faculty or staff will be issued a notice of policy violation and the Talent and Culture or Office of the Provost will be notified.

Third offense- faculty or staff will be issued a notice of policy violation, the Talent and Culture or Office of the Provost will be notified and a tobacco cessation opportunity will be offered.

For visitors:

First offense- visitors will be issued a notice of policy violation.

Second and third offenses- visitors will be issued a notice of policy violation and the University Police Department will be notified.

“We’ve actually hired a compliance officer and his job will be to go around and let people know about violations,” Fucillo said. 

vape cloud

A student uses an e-cigarette. 

Fucillo also said the University wants to affect a cultural change where people can be able to stop using tobacco products or e-cigarettes willingly and have the education and knowledge to do so.

He said there are three different prongs to creating a campus culture of compliance with the new rule: awareness, education and accountability.

“We’re creating a student ambassador program. We’re going to have ambassadors that will be trained in educating and just making everyone aware of the benefits of non-smoking [and] what resources are available [for those] vaping or smoking or using tobacco products.”

Under accountability, Fucillo said that there is a website that anyone can go to and anonymously report any violations to the rule. All of that information will be monitored.

University programs like athletic events may be exempt from the tobacco- and smoke-free campus rule.

To report a violation, visit https://tobaccoandsmokefree.wvu.edu/report-violations.