Vassar College Students Keep Unwanted Items from Landfill

Hundreds of pounds of clothing, appliances and other household items left behind as students recently moved out of the dorms were collected, sorted and donated to local nonprofit agencies by the college's SWAPR (Students With a Purpose Recycling) team. Before SWAPR started 13 years ago, the college would deploy 20 extra dumpsters outside the dorms to handle the flood of discarded material at the end of every school year. This year, says a Vassar College Committee on Sustainability intern, they only needed three to four.

Colorado State U Keeps 35K Pounds of Unwanted Items from Landfill

The university's "Leave it Behind" program sorts and sells unwanted items during student move-outs from residence halls. The proceeds will be donated to the campus EcoLeaders program.

New Mexico State U Adds 6 New Water Bottle Filling Stations

Since the installation of its first bottle filling station in March 2012, the university has saved more than 89,000 disposable plastic bottles from going to the landfill. Additional stations will be added by the end of the summer.

Towson U 'Trash-to-Treasure' Event Raises $3K for Sustainability

Staff, faculty, and community members bought items left behind during the student move-out at bargain prices, raising $3,007 for campus sustainability initiatives in areas including environmental education, recycling and renewable energy. Items left after the sale were donated to local charities and electronics were recycled through National Reclamation.

Denison U 'Operation Move Out' Donates Unwanted Student Items

As students recently moved out of the dorms, several local agencies like Big Brothers/Big Sisters and New Beginnings Shelter and Services were invited to the residence halls to look for donated usable items like couches, TVs, coffee makers and refrigerators.

Richland College Anthro Students Uncover Recycling Patterns

After digging through almost 600 pounds of trash on campus, the students determined that campus recycling rates will improve if recycling receptacles are placed in outlying areas of campus including soccer fields and parking lots.

Missouri State U Expands Move-out Recycling to Nearby Students

This year, students who live adjacent to campus can discard unwanted belongings on campus, where they will go to local charities.

New Mexico State U Increases Athletics Recycling

Through a grant from Keep America Beautiful and the Coca-Cola Foundation, the university has added 24 recycling bins at its sports stadiums and fields.

North Carolina State U Recycling Site Diverts 93% Waste

Ninety-three percent of the campus yard waste, scrap metal, wooden pallets, used tires, discarded electronics and more at the university's Dearstyne Roll-off Convenience Site are reused or recycled. The site is part of the university’s goal is to increase the overall diversion rate of campus waste from landfills to 65 percent from the current 50 percent. **

Cabrillo College Switches to Refillable Dry Erase Markers

In addition to reduced waste, this non-toxic alternative has saved about $600 per semester in the Physics Department compared to the cost of using regular, single-use markers.

Western Carolina U Adds 75 Recycling Bins to Campus

One of 35 colleges and universities to receive a donation of recycling bins as part of the Alcoa Foundation Recycling Bin Grant Program, the university will now be able to expand its recycling program to athletic facilities, where students reported a need.

U Illinois Chicago Expands Recycling Efforts

(U.S.) The university will install 60 recycling bins around campus and in residence halls. The bins were made possible by a grant from the Alcoa Foundation, in partnership with Keep America Beautiful.

Bowdoin College Athletes Implement Shoe Reuse Program

Bowdoin Green Athletes (BGA) looks to continue its campaign to ingrain sustainability into the athletic culture through a team-by-team strategy and a shoe reuse initiative. As part of the Rerun Shoes initiative, BGA has installed two boxes for students to donate their old, unwanted sneakers. About 200 pounds of shoes have been collected so far.

Cabrillo College Purchases Refillable Dry-Erase Markers

The college’s Division of Natural and Applied Science has begun using refillable dry-erase markers in an effort to eliminate toxins, reduce waste and save money.

San Francisco State U Students Monitor Recycling Bins

The Cesar Chavez Student Center has launched a new program that aims to educate students on waste diversion. Ten student volunteers will monitor recycling bins to ensure items are discarded properly. The university’s goal is to reach 100 percent waste diversion by 2020.

U Colorado Colorado Springs to Implement E-Waste Recycling Policy

The university has announced plans to institute a new electronics recycling policy beginning July 1. All university computers and electronic equipment will be addressed by this policy and will be recycled with an e-Steward certified recycler.

U Minnesota Launches Virtual Warehouse

The university has launched a new online exchange to facilitate reuse and waste reduction. Similar to Craigslist or Freecycle, the virtual warehouse allows users to exchange university property without visiting the ReUse warehouse or moving items to a building's dock for pickup.

Cowell College to Eliminate Paper Towels in Residence Halls

The college has announced plans to eliminate the use of paper towels in residence hall bathrooms. Small hand towels will be provided to residents in an effort to reduce the volume of used paper towels that go to the landfill.

Ohio U Project Creates Visual Representation of Recycled Plastic

The university’s Campus Recycling has created a visual representation of how quickly recyclable materials can accumulate over the course of one month. The 16-foot high campus sculpture, entitled “It All Adds Up,” is comprised of four weeks’ worth of recycled #1 and #2 plastics collected on campus. The project was created to coincide with the university's RecycleMania efforts.

Dundee U Launches Recycle and Reward Initiative

(U.K.): The university has installed four reverse vending machines that accept bottles and cans as part of the Recycle and Reward initiative. Students and staff will be rewarded for recycling through a variety of incentives including cash, discount vouchers or vouchers for donations to charities.

East Tennessee State U to Receive Recycling Bins

(U.S.): Alcoa Foundation ha partnered with Keep America Beautiful (KAB) and the College and University Recycling Coalition (CURC) to provide 60 recycling bins to the university as part of the Recycling Bin Grant Program.

U Chicago Launches Paperless Payroll

(U.S.): In an effort to reduce paper consumption, Financial Services has implemented a paperless payroll system. This digitization effort increases security and transparency while also reducing the costs of printing, shipping, archiving, and shredding.

U South Carolina Installs Solar Trash Compactors

(U.S.): The facilities department has installed eight BigBelly Solar trash compactors and Smart Belly recycling units at the Russell House University Union. The new compactors replaced 40 trashcans and will serve as a pilot program. The trashcans will be repurposed to offer more recycling cans in other areas of the campus.

Spelman College to Receive 75 Recycling Bins

The college will receive 75 recycling bins as part of the Alcoa Foundation Recycling Bin Grant Program. The program is an effort to help schools boost their recycling results during the eight-week RecycleMania Tournament, and expand their recycling efforts throughout the year.

U Minnesota Morris Launches On-Site Composting

The university has launched an organic waste disposal program as part of its campus-wide sustainability efforts. The initiative was led by a group of students to help avoid a waste hauling fee and create a valuable resource for use in landscaping projects. In the past, all compostable materials were sent off-campus to be incinerated.

Appalachian State U Begins Zero Waste Commitment

The university has launched a zero waste commitment with the goal of diverting 90 percent of all waste from landfill disposal by 2022. As part of this commitment, single stream recycling and mini-bin waste collection initiatives will be implemented. The initiative will also include institutional purchasing decisions that focus on reducing consumption and increasing recycling.

Colorado State U Conducts Waste Audit

Students, faculty and staff have conducted an audit of trash gathered from the university’s dorms and dining halls as part of RecycleMania. Volunteers separated items to recycle, compost or discard. Results from the same audit conducted last year found that 26 percent of what was tossed could have been recycled, 36 percent could have been composted and only 38 percent was true trash.

Georgia Tech Housing to Streamline Recycling

The Department of Housing will implement a new single stream recycling system to replace the multi-stream process that is currently in use. Student recycling is expected to increase by 20 percent by the end of the semester.

Knox College Theatre Students Promote Sustainability

Theatre students have raised an emphasis on reducing waste and promoting sustainability for its latest stage production. All items were reused from past shows, purchased from second hand/vintage shops, or created with the intention of being used again. The students also created a Sustainability Crew which included initiatives like sewing tote bags from old t-shirts, posting student videos promoting sustainability on YouTube, and encouraging others to be more sustainable in their everyday lives.

U Maryland Greek Community Launches Composting Initiative

Eleven Greek fraternities and sororities on campus have launched composting initiatives since 2010. Compost collected from each participating house is taken to a compactor at one of the dining halls. The university has seen a significant increase in composting across the campus since the initiatives launched. In 2012, the university composted 566.18 tons, up from 138 tons in 2010.

U Maryland to Install Bottle Refilling Stations

Facilities Management has announced it will replace water fountains on campus with filling stations as part of the Sustainability Council’s Terps Love the Tap project. The new fountains will include a traditional water fountain head, a filtered filling station for reusable bottles and “green counters” that track how many plastic bottles have been saved over the course of the fountain’s use.

Harvard U Launches System to Reuse Interoffice Envelopes

In an effort to reduce costs and promote reuse, the university’s School of Public Health Eco-Opportunity team members have launched a new reuse system for interoffice envelopes. A pop-up notification on the website page for new interoffice envelopes now directs purchasers to the appropriate contacts for receiving surplus envelopes at no cost.

College of Wooster Bans Bottled Water

(U.S.): The college has announced it will no longer sell bottled water at locations on campus where students can make purchases using their “Flex” plan. The ban is a result of a grassroots initiative led by the environmental group Greenhouse, which began its campaign three years ago. There are 25 filtered water refill stations across campus, and the college plans to install seven more in the coming weeks.

Yale U Launches Surplus Exchange Website

(U.S.): The Yale Administration office has launched a new website, Eli Surplus Exchange, that allows for all university offices and laboratories to purchase, sell, or exchange furniture, equipment, or other items. The website aims to help departments make better use of their surplus equipment and save money when procuring new supplies, while also supporting sustainability goals of recycling and reuse.

SUNY Cortland Introduces Single Stream Recycling

The university has launched a single-stream system in an effort to increase recycling rates and save money. A cost reduction of about $2,000 per year will result from the reduced carbon footprint of having fewer trucks needed to collect waste and recycling.

Baylor U to Expand Water Refilling Station Pilot Program

The university has announced plans to install more water bottle filling stations across campus following the launch of a successful pilot program last summer. Two water bottle filling stations were installed that have since been used a combined 22,000 times in place of disposable water bottles.

Duke U Releases Higher Ed Recycling Survey Results

The university recently released results from a summer 2012 higher education recycling survey. The survey evaluated solid waste and recycling reporting methods and efficiency of recycling collection programs on campus. A feasibility study of single-stream recycling for the university was also initiated.

Minnesota State U Debuts Student Recycling Program

The Office of Campus Sustainability has launched a student-run recycling program. Each student will be assigned to a different building and will be responsible for collecting the recycling in that building each week. The students will receive a weekly stipend of $15 and have the opportunity to earn prizes, including an end-of-semester trip.

U Maine Debuts Composting System

(U.S.): The university’s Dining Services, in collaboration with its Cooperative Extension, has constructed a new composting facility that will convert nearly one ton of food waste from campus dining facilities into compost to be used for grounds and other campus needs.

Aquinas College Announces Zero Waste Goal

The Center for Sustainability and Students Striving for Sustainability have partnered to work toward campus-wide zero municipal solid waste by 2014. A Zero Waste Team has been created to assist in educational programs concerning the college’s waste streams. With collaboration of faculty, staff, and students, the college will incrementally reduce its waste by 25 percent each semester for the next two years, by expanding campus composting and recycling efforts.

Grand Valley State U Begins Yard Waste Composting

The university has begun separating its compostable waste to create windrows at the Sustainable Agriculture Project farm just outside Allendale campus and mulch for on-campus landscaping.

U Calgary Implements New Recycling Program

The university’s Students’ Union has introduced biodegradable cutlery and “compost educators” to the Student Center in an effort to reduce waste on campus. The compost educators program will place staff hired by the Students’ Union near garbage cans in the food court to demonstrate proper waste disposal.

Northern Arizona U Participates in Food Recovery Challenge

The university has signed on to participate in the EPA Food Recovery Challenge to help achieve zero waste on campus. The self-reporting program requires participants to measure and then set goals to reduce waste.

U Calgary Students Hold Waste-Free Athletics Event

A kinesiology class of 50 students partnered with the university’s athletic department to hold a waste-free event at a basketball game. The project diverted 67 percent of waste through a number of measures including offering free popcorn to fans who brought their own container.

Kansas State U Plans to Produce Biodiesel Fuel

(U.S.): The university has begun plans to design and create a biodiesel unit to refine the vegetable oil on campus. Project organizers expect to receive an external grant from the Kansas Soybean Commission to help fund the project.

Tufts U Installs Greenbean Recycle Boxes

(U.S.): The university has installed 12 Greenbean Recycle boxes in on-campus dorms to launch its partnership with the nonprofit organization Timmy Global Health. Greenbean Recycle is a software technology company that provides universities with reverse vending machines that accept deposits of recyclable cans and bottles in exchange for five-cent refunds to a PayPal account or charity organization.

Syracuse U Installs E-Waste Collection Sites

The university has expanded the number of locations for e-waste disposal as part of the Sustainability Division’s recycling program. A local company that recycles old electronic goods is collecting discarded items including cell phones, batteries, inkjet cartridges and cameras.

U Washington Launches Holiday Event Recycling

The university has announced the launch of its Holiday Event Recycling campaign through the month of December. The campaign aims to remind the community to reserve recycling and compost bins when planning campus events during the holiday season.

Four Colleges and Universities Partner on Composting Program

Medical University of South Carolina, College of Charleston, Trident Technical College and The Citadel have contracted with Koeckeritz’s Food Waste Disposal to compost food waste. While collected material is transported to a compost facility for a fee, the program is expected to save money due to reduced landfill costs.

Rowan U to Introduce New Recycling Initiative

The university has announced plans to reduce the number of trashcans in academic buildings in an effort to increase recycling rates. A grant from Coca-Cola will be used to purchase additional recycling bins that will be placed throughout campus.