Daily News

Bay Path University Receives Truth Initiative Grant and Pledges to Go Tobacco-free

LONGMEADOW — Bay Path University recently announced it is one of 48 colleges and universities to be awarded a grant from Truth Initiative to adopt a 100% tobacco-free or smoke-free campus policy. The effort is part of a national movement among students, faculty, and administrators to address smoking and tobacco use at college campuses throughout the U.S.

“We are truly excited to make Bay Path University a safe, healthy, and productive environment,” said Michael Giampietro, vice president for Finance & Administrative Services. “The health benefits of reducing second-hand smoke exposure are invaluable and could also help students prepare for the workforce, where smoke-free policies are already the norm.”

Ninety-nine percent of all smokers start smoking before the age of 26, making college campuses a critical part in the fight against youth tobacco use. Since 2015, the Truth Initiative Tobacco-Free College Program, in partnership with CVS Health, has awarded more than $1.8 million in funding to 154 colleges and universities to prevent young adults from starting tobacco use, help tobacco smokers quit, and reduce everyone’s exposure to secondhand smoke. 

“Our goal is to make campus environments healthier places to live, work, and learn,” said Robin Koval, CEO and president of the Truth Initiative. “We are proud to continue to build relationships and provide grants to minority-serving institutions, HBCUs [historically black colleges and universities], women’s colleges, and community colleges to give them the tools to go tobacco-free and be the generation that ends smoking.”

Bay Path University’s efforts are part of a growing trend to clean the air on campuses. Currently, more than 2,342 higher-education institutions in the U.S. have gone smoke- or tobacco-free.

“The grant from Truth Initiative has set us up for success, and I’m positive we can achieve our goals,” said Giampietro.