UPDATE at 4:34 p.m. on 10/2/19 with a statement from A&M-Commerce President Dr. Mark Rudin.
The Chancellor of the Texas A&M University System issued a memorandum on Tuesday that called for a ban on smoking E-cigarettes, or "vaping" on all system campuses.
Chancellor John Sharp said in the statement that he wanted the presidents of the 11 member institutions and directors of the eight state agencies within the system to institute a ban "as soon as possible."
The memorandum details findings by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control into medical issues caused by vaping. The CDC's latest findings indicate that as of September 24, 805 confirmed and probable patient cases of lung injury were associated with e-cigarette product use in the United States, as well as 12 deaths across 10 states.
However, vaping is still widely considered to be safer than smoking traditional tobacco products, according to multiple studies. The CDC lists on their website that worldwide, tobacco causes 7 million deaths per year.
"I do not want to take any unnecessary chances with the health of our students, faculty and staff," Sharp said. "To that end, I am directing the presidents of each of the 11 universities and the directors of the eight state agencies within the Texas A&M University System to ban the use of e-cigarettes and vaping as soon as possible."
Sharp also stated the ban on vaping "is to be mandatory and expanded to every inch of the Texas A&M System." He goes on to thank Texas A&M University President Michael Young for the "inspiration for this important ban."
It is not yet known what the plans are to implement the ban at the Texas A&M University-Commerce campus, or when a ban will be put in place. A&M-Commerce President Dr. Mark Rudin said in a statement Wednesday that the university “We will honor the directive from the chancellor and begin putting together a strategy to adhere to the new ban."
The full memorandum can be viewed here.