Kentucky Wesleyan hosts presentation on “Nicotine and Vaping Awareness”

Kentucky Wesleyan College will host a special presentation, “Nicotine and Vaping Awareness,” on Wednesday, Sept. 6, at 7 p.m. at the Jack T. Wells Activity Center at 3300 Frederica St. Robert Hackenson, a renowned professional speaker and ‘edutainer’ with Dynamic Presentations will speak. Hackenson says, “It is more than just what you say, it’s how the message is delivered.” His presentations are interactive, educational and inspirational, and he keeps audiences engaged with theatrics and magic.

The event is made possible through a Community Health Investment Grant at Owensboro Health Regional Hospital and is open to the public and campus community. Community partners Owensboro Health HealthPark and Outpatient Pharmacy and Green River District Health Department will be on site with information and resources for nicotine cessation products. Hackenson will provide an additional presentation the following day for the campus community exclusively.

KWC is committed to providing a safe and healthy environment for students, faculty, staff and visitors. The College enacted a smoke-free policy in 2011 and a tobacco-free policy in 2020. Noting the increased use of vaping products, which contain greater amounts of nicotine–up to twice that of cigarettes–KWC is proactively educating individuals about risks and providing accessibility to products for those interested in quitting. Kentucky is one of five states with the highest rate of e-cigarette usage in the country, and vaping is popular with the 18-29 age group; launching a program to address nicotine use was the logical next step.

The grant has allowed KWC to provide a BREATHE tobacco treatment specialist training program to two individuals. BREATHE is offered by the University of Kentucky College of Nursing and is designed to equip program implementers with evidence-based skills to treat tobacco dependency including tobacco knowledge, counseling skills, assessment and treatment planning, relapse prevention and professional and community resources. KWC’s tobacco treatment specialists are Michael McComas, director of student involvement and orientation, and Dr. Sara Doolin-Thompson.

“Kentucky Wesleyan is committed to reducing the number of students, staff and faculty who use vaping and nicotine-based products,” said Micheal McComas. “We are grateful to Owensboro Health for their generous support. Students make life-changing decisions during their College years, and we are providing a convenient place and quality care to encourage sound health decisions and improve lives.”

For more information, contact Michael McComas at 270-852-3286 or