Wednesday, February 4, 2009

All Together Now

Next week we will begin the conversion to a single stream recycling system across the Lasell College campus. A lot of people have put in some hard work to make this conversion happen. We are hopeful that the conversion will simplify recycling and significantly increase our recycling rates. The physical resources will be in place, the custodial staff will be trained, and we will be launching a major education campaign in an effort to make recycling part of our culture at Lasell. By providing the community with the opportunity to easily recycle more materials and by providing educational materials, we hope the campus community will embrace single stream recycling and make this program a success.

A tremendous amount of work still has to be done but I want to take this opportunity to recognize the efforts of several campus members. Many people have been hard at work trying to make the single stream recycling system a success.

Tom Koerber, Director of Plant Operations, pursued the single stream option with the right level of caution. He took time to gather information to make sure a single stream system was best for Lasell. He negotiated the best possible contract with haulers and has hired a staff member to handle our recyclables.

Linda Williams, also in Plant Operations, has served a pivotal role in converting Lasell to the single stream system. Once the decision to convert to a single stream system was made, Linda has been busy preparing the physical resources the system will require. From ordering colored bags to printing stickers, Linda has been hard at work getting ready to re-purpose trash bins into recycling containers. There are a ton of trash bins around campus and Linda is starting the challenging process of associating all trash bins with a recycling container.

Kayla McKenna spent about a week of her winter break designing the single stream poster for Lasell. I think the design is great and the posters provide a concept that will be repeated across campus in all our educational efforts. The posters will be placed near all the recycling containers on campus so community members know how to recycle properly.

Lasell College now has a great recycling logo thanks to Samantha Crisman. Samantha also worked hard over winter break to design this logo. The logo has been printed on stickers and will be displayed on recycling containers around campus.

There was quite a debate about the appropriate recycling system for Lasell and Professor Toffler played a critical role in helping us reach a final decision. He spent time researching the pros and cons of different recycling systems and brought together the appropriate people to discuss. Professor Toffler has a passion for the environment and has done a great job energizing students on campus about sustainability issues.

Amy Greene recruited and trained students to serve as Sustainability Stewards. These students will have a presence on campus and be ready to educate fellow students about our new recycling system.

Scott Lamphere, Director of Residential Life, scheduled a recycling session during RA training. This provided a great opportunity to educate leaders in the residence halls about the new recycling system. Scott has also lead the bulletin board effort. Bulletin boards across campus will have a consistent look that presents our new single stream recycling system.

Students in my Leadership class are currently initiating leadership projects to make the single stream recycling system a sustainable success. Students are taking on projects to decorate recycling station areas, increase signage in the residence halls, produce marketing materials to promote the system, obtain recycling totes for student rooms, and many more clever ideas. They have a lot of energy and will play a big role in helping to create a green culture at Lasell.

This is just a sample of the many people hard at work trying to make the single stream system a success. It is going to take a campus wide effort to really make this system work. I encourage you to thank the people working hard on the recycling system and ask them how it is going. I also encourage campus members to step up and take on a leadership role to help us reach our sustainability goals. Whether you are a student, faculty, or staff member, we can find a way for you to help.

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