Tufts students on the Medford campus have been composting in their dorms for several years through the Eco-Reps program. But until last year, unstaffed dorms – that is, dorms without Residential Assistants (RAs) and Eco-Reps – were left to organize the disposal of their organic waste on their own.
The program aimed to divert food waste from the trash. On-campus apartments have full kitchens, meaning students living in those spaces are more likely to be cooking regularly – and therefore producing more food waste – than students in some of the other dorms.
22 apartments received bins during the first pilot round of the program and several more joined during the spring semester.
Students who signed up for the program received a bin at the beginning of the spring semester, along with instructions about maintaining their compost and locations around campus where the bins could be emptied. Recycling interns also sent out a weekly email with tips and reminders.
Recycling is currently working to improve the program and investigating the potential of having off-campus apartments participate.
(Pictured above: Savannah Christiansen, ‘16, Recycling intern, coordinated the program’s launch in the spring of 2016.)
So a few days ago, the microwave in our office broke.
*This is a dramatic reenactment using an image from the interwebs and NOT what actually happened to our microwave.
Naturally we were all pretty upset. We all bring lunch from home and many of us like to heat up our soups, casseroles, and other leftovers.
Before we could panic, though, someone had the great idea to ask the Tufts Freecycle Elist to help us out!
The Freecycle Elist was started by an Eco-Ambassador, Stacie Simon, and anyone from the Tufts community can join. Whether you’ve got furniture or office supplies you no longer need but that is still in good condition or you’re looking for something specific (like a microwave!), the e-list is a great first resource. It’s all about reuse and free exchange.
Sure enough, the same day we sent out our plea for help, another Eco-Ambassador, Lynne Ramsey, wrote us back with a microwave to offer! We had it in our office and up and running within a couple of days. It was totally free and we helped Lynne clear out her basement a bit. 😉
Our new-used microwave looks much better and is working great!
You could have success with the Tufts Freecycle E-list too! Sign up today to not only get emails whenever someone posts about an item (chairs, rugs, printers, ink, lamps, etc.) they’re giving away — but also reach out when you’re looking for something! You never know what treasures someone else is holding onto.
President Monaco hosted the second of three President’s Picnics on Monday, June 13th, at the Boston Campus. The annual Picnics bring together staff and faculty on each of Tufts’ campuses to celebrate community and another year of hard work — and is also one of the major zero-waste events held throughout the year.
As part of the zero waste campaign, attendees were encouraged to BYOP — Bring Your Own Plate (and other picnic necessities) — which allowed less reliance on disposable dishes, cutlery, and cups.
Condiments were served in large containers, rather than individual packets, to cut down on packaging waste.
Drinks were likewise served in bulk to reduce waste.
Recycling interns helped sort recycling and compost at special Zero Waste Stations. 17 bags of compost were collected, compared with only one of trash!