Volume 74, Issue 16
February 7, 2003

Student Environmental Alliance implements paper recycling on campus

Brooke Burkett

Many students probably recycle when they are at home. But how much recycling actually occurs at Washington College?

Paper is recycled in some of the administrative buildings. The Cove has the trash bins to recycle, but does not take the initiative. Bottles and cans are recycled in the dorms.

Students are taking the initiative at WC right now to improve recycling on campus.

The Student Environmental Alliance (SEA) is the forerunner in this student movement. "It's about teamwork.

"Recycling on campus has to be a collaborative effort to increase awareness," commented sophomore Adrienne Nash.

Recycling is another extension of the liberal arts education at WC that students can pursue.

Many feel that the student body needs to realize what a huge amount of waste the college produces that is not being redirected to recycling.

WC pays to have the garbage compressed and put in a landfill. Economically speaking, it is cheaper for the school to recycle through Kent County Recycling.

However, recycling is free and it only takes effort from the faculty and student body.

"We know we can recycle, and it is not anyone's fault that we haven't. We only need to improve upon what WC already has," stated Nash.

According to student Erica McDaniel, "We have to think about the area that our school is located in. When we recycle, it creates a better image for WC."

On January 24, some of the members of SEA met with Marty Holden, who is in charge of the Kent County recycling program.

This meeting with Holden has sparked more interest in recycling on campus. "People are really getting excited about recycling," said Nash.

Through student and faculty initiatives, shredded paper will be collected from administrative buildings and paper recycling will be introduced to the dorms.

SEA has started a pilot program for paper recycling in Queen Anne's, Kent and Minta Martin dorms.

White paper, colored paper, magazines, newspapers, and corrugated cardboard can all be put in the paper recycling bins.

Thin cardboard cannot be recycled since there is not a market for it yet.

Kent County Recycling picks up the paper on Friday with the bottles and cans.

A plastic covering needs to go on top of the bin if it is raining so the paper will not get wet, as Kent County Recycling will not pickup the paper if it is wet.

"The pilot program for paper recycling is going really well. The dorms that are participating are doing an awesome job!" said Nash.

"It is disgusting to think how much paper we haven't been recycling," said McDaniel.

After a week of paper recycling in the dorms, at least one recycling bin was full.

SEA is hoping that as the initiative catches on, more paper will be recycled.

Holden commented, "Recycling is an evolutionary process."

Over time, students and faculty will understand the new system and paper recycling will increase just as bottles and cans have over the years.

McDaniel stated, "As easy as recycling, is we don't really have an excuse not to."

Interested students are urged to visit the SEA's website, at http://students.washcoll.edu/club.pages/sea/.