OBJECTIVE:The objective of this study was to assess the association between employment, educational level, marital status, and smoking in a large cohort of Spanish university graduates (3- and 5-year degrees), with a predominance of health professionals. METHODS:A cross-sectional analysis of the baseline data of the first 7,508 participants in the follow-up study of the University of Navarre (SUN Project) was performed. The subjects were classified according to their smoking status. Independent variables were: employment, marital status, highest educational level attained, number of children, alcohol consumption (g/day), body mass index, and age. In the multivariate analysis, 3 non-conditional logistic regression models were built using the following outcomes: a) smokers vs never-smokers plus ex-smokers; b) smokers vs never-smokers; c) smokers of 15 or more cigarettes a day vs smokers of less than 15 cigarettes a day plus never-smokers and ex-smokers. RESULTS:Among men, no association was found between employment and smoking status in any of the comparisons. In contrast, among women, being a nurse was associated with a higher prevalence of smoking. The prevalence of current smokers among nurses was 48.5%. Female students were also more likely to smoke and had a higher risk of being heavy smokers (OR = 1.81; 95% CI, 1.28-2.57). A lower prevalence of smoking was found among participants of both sexes who had completed a doctorate. CONCLUSIONS:Among a large Spanish collective with higher education, the prevalence of smoking was higher in women with a shorter college degree. The prevalence of smoking among nurses was higher than the average among women graduates, which is a cause for concern.