Full-Time College Students Less Likely to Use Synthetic Cannabinoids or Cathinones Than Other Young Adults

Our education system has always encouraged post-secondary education, but new data suggest this effort is far more important than we once thought.  Young adults not in college are more than twice as likely to report using synthetic cannabinoids or synthetic cathinones than those attending college full time, according to the most recent data from the national Monitoring the Future survey. Nearly one in ten high school graduates who were one to four years out of high school reported using synthetic cannabinoids, also known as spice or K2, in the past year, compared to 4.3% of full-time college students. Similarly, 3.5% of young adults not attending college reported using synthetic cathinones, also known as bath salts, compared to 0.2% of full-time college students. While there are currently 18 synthetic cannabinoids and 3 synthetic cathinones illegal at the federal level, these laws are often circumvented by the production, sale, and use of new synthetic cannabinoid and cathinone metabolites not covered by current legislation.

Young Adults Not in College More Than Twice As Likely to Report Past Year Synthetic Cannabinoid or Synthetic Cathinone Use As Full-Time College Students*, 2012

graph 1*Full-time college students were defined as persons one to four years past high school who said they were taking courses as full-time students in a two- or four-year undergraduate college at the beginning of March 2012.

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