By Matthew Salzano '18
PLU Marketing & Communications
TACOMA, WASH. (May 18, 2015)- As summer approaches, moving out is on the mind, and Pacific Lutheran University’s Office of Sustainability and Office of Residential Life are partnering with Goodwill for the second straight year to make sure that sustainability is on every Lute’s mind as they pack up.
“Students are in such a hurry to return home during move out, that they will often not use their best judgment in what they should throw away and what they should recycle,” PLU Waste Diversion Coordinator Ryan Grant said. That’s why the Office of Sustainability offers ways to keep material out of landfills.
In 2014, a total of 212,801 pounds of material left campus during move out. Almost three-quarters of that material avoided landfills in a process called diversion. Instead, the salvageable goods were delivered to Goodwill thrift stores, the Trinity Food Pantry, commingled recycling, and e-waste — just to name a few.
Each residence hall will have donation bins for reusable items, non-perishable foods, any toiletries (including partially used) and a bin to collect dishes from The Commons.
Utilizing these bins during move-out week helps to both save the earth and benefits the surrounding community by keeping waste out of landfills. Leigh Ann Myhre, Director of Donor Serves for Goodwill, said these diversion campaigns help Washington residents find employment.
“School and household donations are critical fuel for lowering the unemployment rate in Pierce and the other 14 counties we serve,” Myhre said. “School cleanup efforts help 9,800 southwest Washington residents with job training and placement in multiple career fields.”
This year, the Office of Sustainability said it hopes to direct more than 250,000 pounds away from landfills by increasing Goodwill collections by 13 percent, and bringing the diversion rate (moving material to places other than landfills) up 5 percent.
“We will need our students to help to make this goal a reality!” Grant said, enthusiastically.
Grant says there’s an easy rule of thumb for diversion during move-out: “if it still works and doesn’t smell terrible, donate it! If it looks like it can be recycled, recycle it!”
Students who have additional questions about move out can contact firstname.lastname@example.org, their RA or the RA on duty.
May 16: Move Out begins!!!!
May 16-25: Small donations accepted in residence hall lobbies
May 19-25: Goodwill trailers and drop boxes will be located outside of residence halls
May 16-June 2: Small donations accepted in South Hall lobby
May 19-June 3: Goodwill clothes & furniture trailers located outside of South Hall
What the Office of Sustainability WILL Take:
- Any toiletry products, opened or unopened
- Carpet & rugs
- Televisions & electronics
- Furniture & other household goods
- Old clothing, even rags
- Food (in specially marked locations)
- Books and school supplies
What they WILL NOT Take:
- Personal or over the counter medication
- Butane containers and most paints
- Anything exposed to gas or oil