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Nursing students advocate for Louisiana ‘Butt Kicking’

April 14, 2016

REBEKAH BARNES

Staff Reporter| reb0335@ latech.edu

 

 

 

In light of Louisiana Tech’s smoke-free campus policies, the cigarette trash that used to litter the school has been replaced by signs reading, “Kick butts with Louisiana Tech.”

 

 

This quarter, Tech’s Nursing 114 class, taught by Dwanna Blake, participated in National Kick Butts Day for its service-learning project.

 

 

“We were trying to bring awareness to tobacco use, the harmful effects of smoking, the consequences of secondhand smoke and third-hand smoke,” Blake said. “We also shared information with students about incentives for not smoking by passing out gum.”

 

 

Blake said third-hand smoke is a lesser-known consequence of smoking, and children in smoking families are often involved.

 

 

“The children are exposed to secondhand smoke,” she said. “Those children go into their classrooms at school, and they have the smoke in their clothing, hair, backpacks and books. All the kids in their classes are being exposed to third-hand smoke.”

 

 

She said all nursing courses incorporate community service or service-learning projects into the curriculum because education is an important part of the healthcare profession.

 

 

“The students felt like the people they encountered on campus were very receptive and asked some questions,” she said. “And a number of faculty stopped by and said, ‘Thank you for sharing this information.’”

 

 

Taylor Wilson, a junior nursing student, passed out information about second and third-hand smoke on campus for her project.

 

 

“I feel like tobacco affects so many people that our project would be easy to get people’s attention,” Wilson said.

 

 

She said many people did not know about third-hand smoke, so she was able to educate them.

 

 

Jordan Wyatt, also a junior nursing student, said smoking can be more than just an addiction to nicotine, but also a habit.

 

 

“They relate it to stress, cutting grass, deer hunting,” he said. “A lot of people relate nicotine or tobacco in general to aspects of their life then they try to quit. The next time they go to do anything they used to relate to smoking cigarettes or dipping, they think about it.”

 

 

Overall, the students said they felt like they were successful at communicating their research and explaining the consequences of tobacco.

 

 

“Current evidence-based practice says that prevention, education, offering incentives and raising the tobacco sales tax have been successful strategies in reducing tobacco use,” Blake said.

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