College and University Recycling Awards

College and University Recycling Award- University of Massachusetts- Amherst

University of Massachusetts - Amherst has implemented diverse organics diversion programs.  As mentioned, UMass – Amherst has gone trayless and offers composting in dining areas.  Students run a composting awareness campaign and are also currently developing a business around tandem bike pickup of organic waste from both offices and residences.  And the Dining Commons utilizes the LeanPath Tool to track pre-consumer waste.  Due to these varied approaches, UMass Amherst now composts 1400 tons of organic waste.

Administration is so pleased with the organics diversion that it wants to site one of the largest anaerobic digestion facilities in the state on campus by the end of 2014.  The planned facility would also serve local municipalities and other colleges in the Pioneer Valley area.

In addition to organics diversion, the university also offers an e-waste collection center, nicknamed the "Green Monstah"; students and administration work together to provide sustainable move out opportunities each year; students act as waste reduction consultants to 30 certified green offices on campus; and EcoReps hold an annual trash sort each fall to highlight diversion opportunities.

 

College and University Recycling: Best Student Effort Award- Clark University

A dedicated group of student EcoReps at Clark University founded a residence hall composting program, “Clark Composts,” after an annual waste audit revealed that 60% of resident hall solid waste was actually compostable.

The students piloted the project in an upper-class residence hall, placing compost containers in the kitchenette, a larger bin in the main kitchen, and repurposed yogurt containers for each resident.  EcoReps administered the program and worked to make students aware and engaged, even creating some friendly competition with a large wall chart in the hall.

After the success of the first hall, the students secured funding from Clark's Student Fund to commence the next pilot.  The EcoReps consulted with several administrative offices with the guidance of CET RecyclingWorks to ensure success, and were pleasantly surprised when the authorities supportively suggested expansion to four residence halls.  The four halls chosen have a majority of residents that are Freshmen, strategically ensuring that these students carry on the composting ethic as they rise to the upper-class halls.

The students work also revealed that by better diverting bathroom paper products to the underutilized campus organics compactor, Clark could save money due to reduced waste management costs.

For their dedication to developing a successful composting program, MassRecycle is pleased to recognize the students behind Clark Composts!