Smoke Free Policy

Applies to: All University of Southern California (“USC”) schools and departments, and all members of the USC community (faculty, staff, and students).

1. Policy

Issued: January 10, 2017
Last Revised: March 21, 2022
Last Reviewed: March 21, 2022                                                                   

USC is a Smoke-Free Campus

2. Policy Purpose

To set forth and define the prohibition of smoking at USC with the intent of creating a healthy atmosphere for all members of the USC community, and to create an environment that promotes the prevention of tobacco use, and supports those who want to quit using tobacco and other smoked substances.

3. Scope and Application

This policy applies at all times to all USC schools, departments, and members of the USC community (e.g., faculty, staff, students, and guests), in all indoor and outdoor USC owned and leased properties, and/or during USC-sanctioned or affiliated events and activities.

4. Definitions

SmokingInhaling, exhaling, burning, carrying or possessing any lighted cigarette, cigar, pipe, electronic cigarette, hookah or other lit product and including the use of any substance, including but not limited to tobacco, cloves or marijuana
Secondhand SmokeSmoke inhaled involuntarily from tobacco (or other substances) being smoked by others.
USC PropertiesAll university owned and leased properties (including housing, dining, hotel, retail, athletic and performance facilities and all teaching, research, clinical and office space). Additionally, this policy applies to any property occupied by any fraternity or sorority officially recognized by the university.

5. Policy Details

Smoke Free USC

USC is committed to promoting a healthy, safe, and comfortable environment for all students, faculty, staff and visitors. Both Direct and secondhand smoke exposure is a cause of various health problems and diseases. Even for healthy non-smokers, there is no risk-free level of exposure to secondhand smoke. Secondhand smoke has been shown to cause cardiovascular disease, lung cancer, sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS), and other harmful effects on children. Smoking also puts the university at risk of incurring institutional costs associated with fire damage, cleaning and maintenance, health care, and medical insurance. Therefore, smoking is strictly prohibited in all indoor and outdoor USC Properties, including within vehicles parked on the premises.


Smoking may be permitted in connection with the following:

  • Research activities if approved by the USC Institutional Review Board or other appropriate research committee through the Office for the Protection of Research Subjects
  • Ceremonial purposes with prior approval of the sponsoring department and the Office of Cultural Relations and University Events
  • University-sponsored theatrical and performance purposes where simulation of smoking may be permitted under approved university event guidelines.
  • Enforcement for the policy is the responsibility of each member of the USC community. Refusal by faculty, staff or students to comply with this policy may result in disciplinary action. Visitors who refuse to comply will be asked to leave the premises and could be subject to arrest for trespassing if they persist.

6. Procedures


7. Forms


8. Responsibilities

Position or OfficeResponsibilities

9. Related Information

10. Contacts

Please direct any questions regarding this policy to:

Environmental Health & Safety(323)