Evergreen is First College in Washington to Join the National Post-Landfill…

first_imgSubmitted by The Evergreen State CollegeJune marks the end of the school year and beginning of summer break for students of all ages, but many college students may change residences during that time, vacating dorms and apartments for family homes near and far.As they depart, the question of where to leave their “stuff” can plague students, parents and on-campus residence staff. Storage is not always feasible, or even practical for the odd lamp, end table, old TV, appliance or extra clothing and many student possessions end up in landfills.This year, in conjunction with Post Landfill Action Network (PLAN), Residential and Dining Services (RAD) at The Evergreen State College will host “The Gathering,” which encourages students to drop off items that they are not taking home and can’t store. Items will be collected from Friday, June 5, to Saturday, June 13 and will either be available for sale next term or donated to such nonprofits as Egyhop and Interfaith Works Overnight Shelter. Proceeds of sale items go directly to residence hall student programming at Evergreen.The national PLAN is composed of college students and recent graduates (no one on staff finished college before 2012), guided by a professional caliber Board of Directors. As the PLAN website states, “Waste on college campuses balloons at the end of each academic year. Thousands of reusable or recyclable items, including electronics containing carcinogens like lead and mercury, were sent to landfills.” As one example, the University of New Hampshire generated 125 tons of waste when students moved out in the spring, up from the typical 25 tons of trash in each of the other months.In 2011, a group of undergraduates at the University of New Hampshire noticed dumpsters overflowing with reusable materials after spring move-out. Then, in the fall, they watched as students moving back to campus bought many of the same items new at big box stores. To end the cycle of waste, the students created a program called Trash 2 Treasure, which eventually blossomed into the current national student-led PLAN movement.Evergreen is one of three colleges on the West Coast and the only one in Washington to participate in the event. The other two West Coast colleges are Pitzer and Marymount in California.According to RAD Director, Sharon Goodman, Evergreen was a perfect fit to test the program in the Northwest. “We have a long history of embracing sustainable practices at Evergreen,” said Goodman. “Our students are on board with the idea and spearheading the project. It is the same message many of them are getting in their classes and programs on economics and the environment.” Facebook60Tweet0Pin0last_img

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