EPCC Recognized for Becoming a Smoke-Free Campus

October 23, 2022

The Paso del Norte Health Foundation together with the American Heart Association and Paso de Norte Tobacco Control Network recognized El Paso Community College (EPCC) for becoming a Tobacco-Free campus at the Lung. Live. El Paso. Emerging Issues in Commercial Tobacco and Vaping Conference held at EPCC on October 21st.

EPCC was recognized for their commitment to a clean air environment by updating their policies to protect students, staff and visitors from secondhand smoke exposure on all their campuses. Kayla Madrid, EPCC student, shared her support of EPCC’s action to become smoke-free campus and asked conference participants to continue working for more smoke-free environments. Dr. Carlos Amaya, EPCC Vice President of Student and Enrollment Services, accepted a plaque in recognition of EPCC’s accomplishment.

Vaping has become a serious public health issue among youth in our community. According to a 2020 Texas School Survey, El Paso County showed middle and high school students who ever tried a vapor product nearly doubled the rate of cigarettes (30% and 16.3% respectively).

In addition to recognizing EPCC, conference attendees gained a better understanding of tobacco and vaping issues as well as strategies local partners are implementing to reduce tobacco and vaping use in our region. The Paso del Norte Tobacco Control Network is funded by the Paso del Norte Health Foundation to advocate for issues and strategies to reduce tobacco and vaping use in our community.

For more information on how to quit smoking or vaping, visit

PDNHF Priority Area: Healthy Living

To support efforts that promote positive behaviors to prevent disease including healthy eating, physical activity, smoking/vaping prevention, and positive opportunities for youth.

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Healthy Living

PDNHF Initiative: A Smoke-Free Paso del Norte

Although current youth smoking rates have decreased, the use of electronic cigarettes and youth vaping has now overtaken smoking. According to the recent National Youth Tobacco Survey, E-cigarettes were the most commonly ever used tobacco product overall. Less is known about vaping, but science confirms that nicotine negatively affects the adolescent brain and is addictive. E-cigarette use among youth also is linked with use of other tobacco products as well as alcohol and marijuana abuse.

Smoking is still the leading cause of preventable death and disease in the United States.

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Foundation Staff: Audrey Garcia

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A Smoke-Free Paso del Norte

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