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University of Florida the Latest College to Ban Smoking

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Beginning July 1, smoking and use of other tobacco products will be prohibited anywhere on the University of Florida (UF) campus, part a growing national trend, ABC News reported June 14.

Also implementing smoke-free policies effective in July were the University of Central Oklahoma, Northwestern Michigan College, and Widener University in Pennsylvania. All public universities in Arkansas will become smoke-free in August, with fines ranging from $100 to $500 for infractions.

According to the Nonsmokers' Rights Foundation, only 18 colleges were smoke-free in 2005; now there are 394.

Though UF will not be implementing any fiscal penalty for violations, school officials hope the threat of student disciplinary action and peer pressure will provide enough of an impetus to get kids to stop smoking.

“Nobody wants to be looked at as an outcast,” said Steve Orlando, a spokesman for UF. “It will be a cultural change over time.”

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