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Vaping industry-funded academic scholarships
  1. Guido Baler,
  2. Karina Paci,
  3. Sarah Dorothy Kowitt,
  4. Adam O Goldstein
  1. University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Chapel Hill, North Carolina, USA
  1. Correspondence to Dr Adam O Goldstein, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Chapel Hill, North Carolina, USA; adam_goldstein{at}med.unc.edu

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Introduction

While the benefits versus the risks of increased e-cigarette use among adults remains unsettled, the fact that 21% of high school students in 2018 have used e-cigarettes in the last month is concerning to almost all policymakers and clinicians.1 A recent e-cigarette marketing technique involves the promotion of scholarships for students. Given the novelty of these promotions, we undertook an analysis to understand how widespread this practice is in the USA, along with characteristics of such scholarships.

Methods

We conducted Web-based searches from June to August 2018 for publicly accessible documents related to scholarship opportunities by e-cigarette companies to youth or young adults. Words used to search for opportunities included combinations of ‘vaping’/‘e-cigarette’/‘electronic cigarette’/‘ENDS’ and ‘manufacturer’/‘company’/‘industry’/‘trade association’/‘distributor’ and ‘scholarship’/‘university’/‘college’/‘education’/‘essay’/‘award’/‘fellowship’. We omitted duplicate entities and secondary reports. We then extracted data from each website that described …

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Footnotes

  • Contributors AOG was responsible for helping to create the original research questions and analysis plan. GB wrote the first draft and conducted the analysis. KP and SDK contributed to the discussion and implications of the work. All authors contributed ideas, discussed the results and wrote the manuscript. All authors also approved the final version of the manuscript. AOG is the guarantor of the manuscript.

  • Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Patient consent for publication Not required.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

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