Tobacco-Free Policy

In an effort to provide a healthy, comfortable and productive work and learning environment for students, faculty and staff, all Washington University in St. Louis campuses are entirely smoke and tobacco free.

Under the policy, smoking and the use of all other tobacco products is prohibited on the entire campus. Smoking also is prohibited inside vehicles parked in campus parking lots.

This policy applies to all university community members, including visitors and those attending athletic and alumni events.

WashU Tobacco Free LogoTobacco-Free Policy

Washington University is committed to providing a healthy, comfortable and productive work and learning environment for all students, faculty and staff. Research shows that tobacco use in general, including smoking and breathing secondhand smoke, constitutes a significant health hazard. The university strictly prohibits all smoking and other uses of tobacco products within all university buildings and on university property, at all times.

This policy applies to all, including students, faculty, staff, patients, contractors and visitors.

For the purpose of this policy, “tobacco” is defined to include, but not limited to, any lit cigarette, cigar, pipe, bidi, clove cigarette, electronic cigarette (e-cigarette), personal vaporizer and any other smoking product; and smokeless or spit tobacco, also known as dip, chew, snuff or snus in any form.

  • The use, distribution or sale of tobacco, including any smoking device, or carrying of any lit smoking instrument, in university-owned, leased or occupied facilities or on university-leased, owned, or occupied property*, at events on university properties, or in university-owned, rented or leased vehicles, is prohibited. This includes:
    • all campuses;
    • parking facilities and lots (including in personal vehicles);
    • university buildings located near city/municipality owned sidewalks, within 20 feet of entryways or exits, near air intakes, or near fire/explosion hazards;
    • off-campus housing managed by Residential Life; and
    • fraternity chapter houses managed by Greek Life.
    • (Download a PDF map of the tobacco-free areas (PDF).)
  • If individuals within the university community smoke or use tobacco products off university properties, they are expected to be respectful of residents, hospitals and businesses neighboring the university campuses and properties. They should not loiter in front of homes, businesses or hospitals near university campuses or properties, and must discard tobacco products in appropriate receptacles.
  • The free distribution of tobacco products on university property is prohibited.
  • No tobacco-related advertising or sponsorship shall be permitted on university property, at university-sponsored events or in publications produced by the university.
  • Violations of this policy may result in disciplinary action.

* Facilities fully managed and maintained by Quadrangle Housing, such as the residential portion of the Lewis Center, are not subject to this policy.


The tobacco-free policy is a community health initiative. We are all responsible for implementing and enforcing this policy. It is important that we all work to promote good health and support an environment free of tobacco.

Ultimately, our hope is to achieve voluntary compliance with the tobacco-free policy, aided by community enforcement of its terms. There are clear challenges associated with the enforcement of this policy; however, similar to all university policies, we each have a responsibility to comply. While not preferred, if necessary, disciplinary actions for violations, tailored to each constituency within the community, may be implemented. The university has worked with student and faculty/staff committees from throughout the university to ensure that input from each of these groups regarding obstacles and solutions was taken into account before policy implementation.

Tobacco Cessation Programs

Washington University recognizes that quitting tobacco use can be a significant personal challenge. To assist those who wish to quit smoking, Washington University and other organizations offer free or reduced-cost smoking-cessation programs.

For Students

Information on smoking and tobacco cessation is available through the Habif Health & Wellness Center. Substance abuse specialists are available to work with students who would like an individualized quitting plan, continued support in quitting or nicotine replacement medication. For more information, contact the Habif Health & Wellness Center at 314-935-6666.

For Faculty and Staff

Resources to help faculty and staff quit smoking are available through Human Resources.