Chancellor Phil DiStefano signed the University of Colorado's no-smoking policy Wednesday, making the school the second in the Pac-12 with such a ban.
Until the measure officially goes into place Aug. 19, school officials will be exploring where to put a limited number of designated smoking areas, as well as alerting students and employees about the new policy.
CU is beginning with an educational phase of its ban, putting up no-smoking signs and linking smokers who want to quit with resources to help.
By the end of the calendar year, officials will decide whether having designated smoking areas -- away from main thoroughfares -- are effective and needed in the future, said Malinda Miller-Huey, a campus spokeswoman.
CU's Anschutz Medical Campus in Aurora used designated smoking areas as it transitioned to a smoke-free campus.
Unlike other colleges that issue tickets to those who smoke on campus, CU is not considering that type of enforcement.
"There's been no discussion of fines or ticketing," Miller-Huey said. "The police aren't going to be walking around ticketing people or looking for people smoking. But it is a campus policy."
Students busted smoking on campus could be referred to the Office of Student Conduct, and employees could be referred to their supervisors.
In December, CU's student government voted down a measure supporting an all-out tobacco ban. But that measure would have been more likely to pass had it been a smoking ban like the one CU is enacting, according to student leaders.
CU is the second university in the Pac-12 to ban smoking, following the University of Oregon. The 10 campuses in the University of California system -- including the Berkeley campus, which is part of the Pac-12 -- will all be smoke-free by 2014.
There are now roughly 1,130 college campuses across the country that are smoke-free with no exemptions, according to the American Nonsmokers' Rights Foundation, a California-based group.
A majority are smaller or mid-sized campuses. But momentum is building, said Liz Williams, a project manager for the foundation.
"I think the reason some larger schools may not have implemented smoke- or tobacco-free policies is because it takes longer to consider and adopt policy changes," she said.
She pointed to the University of Kentucky, which is a smoke-free campus in a region where tobacco is a major industry.
Smoking bans on college campuses are important to public health because nearly all smokers start the habit before they're 26, she said.
A Community Health survey in 2011 found that 60 percent of CU students said they had never smoked a cigarette. About 20 percent of students said they had smoked in the last 30 days, and 6.5 percent of students said they smoked daily, according to the survey.
CU will offer resources to students and employees who want to quit smoking. The Faculty and Staff Assistance Program is hosting a series of smoking cessation workshops, support groups and individual counseling sessions throughout the spring semester.
Community Health offers free, confidential counseling to students who want to stop smoking.
The University of Oregon enacted its smoking and tobacco ban in September. School officials announced their plans for the ban in 2010, saying they wanted to reduce the risks of second-hand smoke exposure and provide a healthier environment on campus.
Since then, the school has provided 167 students with cessation products, and faculty and staff members receive free nicotine replacement products and cessation counseling.
Contact Camera Staff Writer Brittany Anas at 303-473-1132 or firstname.lastname@example.org.