Tobacco Cessation Program

Contact Us

(206) 685-7848

Social Media

Find us on Facebook & Twitter!


Health Promotion Office
Main floor of Hall Health, Room 187

Tobacco Talk helps UW students, employees, and patients of Hall Health Center make decisions around their tobacco use. Whether you’re wanting to stop entirely, cut down, or not yet sure, we can provide support and help making a plan.

Tobacco Talk was initially created from a generous gift from the Snoqualmie Tribal People and continues through funding provided by the UW Services and Activities Fee. There is no cost for the program. UW students are additionally able to access Nicotine Replacement Therapy products (usually patches or gum) at no cost.

For further information about what kind of support is available, please contact Director of Health Promotion Mark Shaw  at (206) 685-7848 or You can also check us out on Facebook and Twitter or download our program brochure.

Starting the Conversation

Quitting smoking can be hard, but it’s often easier than people expect. We’re here to offer a safe space to talk about using tobacco, no strings attached. Whether you want to quit right away, or aren’t sure you want to quit right now, that’s okay. We’re here to help you start the conversation.

The first step in terms of participating in the program is setting up a time to meet. After that initial in-person meeting, many options are available for follow-up. We’re can meet in person, by phone, by email, or even through video-conference software you can download onto your computer or your smartphone. Let us know what works best for you.

Asking Questions

One really important step to making changes is to better understand why one engages in an activity. So, if you’re thinking about making changes in your tobacco use, here are some questions to consider:

Why do you smoke (or use other tobacco products)? What does it do for you? What do you get out of it?

It can be very helpful to spend more time talking about what you like about smoking. Smoking is a highly stigmatized activity, especially in the Northwest. People aren’t given space to do an honest appraisal of the reasons to change versus the reasons NOT to change.

Do you see yourself smoking this time next year? In two or five years?

Few people plan to smoke long-term, but may have trouble finding the “right time” to stop. It’s true that some times might be better than others, but making any kind of change is an adjustment. It may be more “art” than “science” to deciding if now is a good time, but we can help with that.

How much does it cost you to smoke? What about long-term?

According to The Awl, Washington is the 8th most expensive state to smoke in, with the average pack of cigarettes costing $9.30. Even if you’re only smoking five cigarettes a day, that’s about $850 a year or $70 every month! Half a pack would be almost $1,700 a year! A pack a day would be almost $3,400!

Have you tried to stop smoking before? How did you try it then, what would you do differently this time?

Things might actually be easier now. Quit attempts are rarely the same twice, partly because more time has passed and partly because situations change. Approaching an effort with a sense of curiosity, rather than worry, can also change the experience dramatically.

Benefits of Not Smoking
  1. Feeling better. Your sense of smell and taste will improve after just a couple days of not smoking. You’ll start breathing more easily after just a couple of weeks.
  2. Avoid serious illness. After a year of being smoke free, your risk of a heart attack is cut in half.
  3. Protect friends and family. Secondhand smoke isn’t just a nuisance, it’s also a serious health concern.
  4. Freedom. Not being dependent on cigarettes or nicotine anymore. No more having to leave friends or an event to find a place to smoke.
What People are Saying about Tobacco Talk

“The tobacco cessation program at UW has been essential in my efforts to quit smoking. Colin has been the best support I could have asked for, and I am truly grateful. He walked me through the entire process and helped me establish a plan. This plan was what helped me realize I could quit smoking. I hope you continue to offer this program in the future for other tobacco users at UW, because it works. I owe Colin, the program, and UW a big thank you for helping me!”

Additional Resources
Tobacco Talk Articles

Here you’ll find useful insights about stopping smoking from the Tobacco Talk staff.  Contact Director of Health Promotion Mark Shaw to learn more about the program at (206) 685-7848 or You can also check out Tobacco Talk’s Facebook page.

Recent articles:

Colin’s Smoking Journal

When digging through old boxes, former Program Coordinator Colin Maloney finds a notepad they used while they were quitting smoking.

Smoking Cessation & The ACA

One of the great things about the Affordable Care Act that doesn’t get a lot of attention, is that smoking cessation support, including medications, is required…

Nicotine Replacement Therapy

While many people feel that they ought to be able to stop using tobacco “cold turkey,” or without any supports many find that their quit process is made easier through the use of Nicotine Replacement Therapy (NRT) products…

Smoking and Stress

Stress! It’s certainly not the case for everyone, but many people feel that smoking helps them manage their stress. I can relate to this experience as I used to find myself smoking more during my undergraduate program…

Meet the Staff

Mark Shaw, Director of Health Promotion

Mark has worked in the fields of health promotion and wellness for 24 years (including 19 with college students), and welcomes talking with people about ways they can live a healthier lifestyle. His special areas of interest include substance abuse prevention, men’s health, smoking cessation, and stress management.

Additional Resources