Vaping on the Bluff

Digest Illustration

A common trend of vaping is rapidly spreading as more people are trading cigarettes for electronic cigarettes (e-cigs) and vape pens. These devices provide users with the same effects that a normal cigarette would but reportedly offer a better taste while being less harmful for the environment, as it eliminates secondhand smoke. 

According to the school’s website, Southern University is a tobacco free campus with a strict policy that states, “The use of tobacco products on any Southern University campus is prohibited by students, staff, faculty or visitors in all campus buildings, facilities, or property owned or leased by Southern University System and outside areas of the campus where non-smokers cannot avoid exposure to smoke; on campus grounds, facilities, or vehicles that are the property of the campus; and at lectures, conferences, meetings, and social and cultural events held on school property or school grounds.”

The use of vapes are rapidly becoming popular amongst young adults. When e-cigs first hit the scene, tobacco companies claimed that they were a safe alternative to cigarettes. However, new studies show that not only are vapes unsafe, but are even more harmful than cigarettes. The chemicals used to create natural flavorings’ found in vapes mixed with nicotine causes its users prone to several health problems such as gum disease, cancer, and various types of lung damage. 

“I feel that it should be treated like smoking a cigarette. Vapes are harmful for the user and they’re toxic to the environment” says sophomore Political Science major Neeraj Edwards. Recent discoveries have shown vaping is especially prevalent amongst college students on campuses across America, with some students even choosing to vape when walking around or during class. Smaller vapes such as Juuls, that look like flash drives, are easy to conceal and allow young adults to be more discreet. 

Sophomore and Social Work major Ashley Johnson feels that “Vaping Is just a new way for the tobacco companies to make more money, but when it comes to vaping on campus I really don’t care. We’re all grown. I’d rather them vape than smoke cigarettes.”

When asked how does vaping make her feel, freshmen and nursing major Nicole Joshua stated “After the first hit, a numbing feeling goes throughout my body, but after a while it gets boring until I stop and take another hit and get that same feeling”. 

Without any preventive action, vaping can dangerously turn into an intergral part of the new generation culture. Schools are scrambling trying to come up with policies to ban or limit the use of vapes while on campus grounds. 

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