An Updated List of States That Allow Concealed Guns on Campus
These states allow the concealed carry of guns on college campuses.
UPDATE: This article, originally posted in Aug. 2017, has been updated to reflect policy changes made in some states. Most of the data below has been pulled from ncls.org, which was last updated in Nov. 2019. ALWAYS check with your state legislature for the most up-to-date laws and policies.
With things changing so quickly these days, you’d be forgiven for wondering: Which states allow concealed gun policies on college campuses?
To make things easy for you, Campus Safety has compiled a running list of states that allow concealed handguns on campus for the public to reference. We’ll keep this as up to date as possible (to the best of our ability) as things change.
Unfortunately, things aren’t quite black and white, so we’re also listing states that allow colleges to make their own concealed carry policies as well as states that expressly ban concealed carry on college campuses.
First, here’s the list of the states that allow the permitted concealed carry of guns on public college and university campuses:
(Editor’s Note: There are many differences in each state’s law that make concealed carry policies different. Kansas, for instance, allows public colleges to ban guns in campus buildings if signs are posted at every entrance explicitly stating weapons are prohibited, and Wisconsin allows colleges to prohibit guns from campus buildings as well. Additional policies are noted alongside the applicable state.)
- Mississippi; legislation passed in 2011 created an exception to allow concealed carry on college campuses for those who have taken a voluntary course on safe handling and use of firearms by a certified instructor
- Oregon; in 2012, the Oregon Higher Education Coordinating Commission voted unanimously to ban weapons in campus buildings at all seven state colleges and universities, except for active-duty military personnel and law enforcement, or some schools with written permission
- Tennessee; Tennessee allows faculty members with licenses to carry weapons on campus but the law does not extend to students or the general public
- Utah; Utah is the only state to have a statute specifically naming public colleges and universities as public entities that do not have the authority to ban concealed carry
If you are in one of these states and crafting a concealed carry policy, check out our Roadmap for Colleges Creating Concealed Carry Policies on Campus.
Next up, here are the states that leave the campus concealed carry policies to individual colleges and universities (it’s a long one):
- New Hampshire
- Rhode Island
- South Dakota
- West Virginia
Finally, here are the states that do not allow the concealed carry of handguns on college campuses:
- New Jersey
- New Mexico
- New York
- North Carolina
- North Dakota
- South Carolina
We hope these lists of states that allow guns on campus are helpful, and we encourage our readers to let us know if any of these lists need to be amended.
Campus Safety tries not to take a position on guns on college campuses, but we feel strongly that information on individual state’s concealed carry policies, also known as campus carry policies, should be easily available to the public so people can stay informed. Again, always check with your state legislature for the most up-to-date campus concealed carry policies.