BABSON COLLEGE REDUCES WASTE AND PLEDGES SUSTAINABILITY FOR THE FUTURE

Learn how Babson is tackling campus sustainability in 2012

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The 2012 academic year has come to a close, and that means that nearly 2,000 students had to pack up and move out, a task easier said than done, given the vast amount of stuff that can accumulate in a college dorm room.  Babson College, nationally recognized as one of the top 125 sustainable colleges and universities by STARS, continued their sustainability efforts this spring by reducing 37 tons of end of year waste through a new Green Move Out initiative.  The Green Move Out campaign, run by Babson's Office of Sustainability, urged students to recycle, reuse, and donate; enabling students to be proactive and more sustainable during the moving-out process. The campaign’s success led to an overall waste reduction of nearly 29 % associated with end-of-the –year student move out year-over-year and increased the move out recycling rate by 12.63 tons. 

Kevin Araujo-Lipine, Assistant Director of Residence Life said, “Spring 2012 move out was a great example of collaboration at its best. Through communication and team effort, groups across campus partnered to have a very successful move out process. Through the positive efforts of everyone involved, we had a smooth process that increased our recycling efforts, and decreased our waste.”
All Babson donations were given to Cradles to Crayons, a non-profit that connects communities with surplus resources with disenfranchised communities to provide children with basic necessities. All recyclables went to the following:
The new and improved Green Move out was just a portion of Babson’s revamped sustainability programs for 2012. Through a partnership between Residential Life, Facilities Management, The Sustainability Office, and the Babson's Eco Representatives, the college was able to create new policies, donation stations, communications, and activities that led to a decrease in waste output by 68.77 tons, or the equivalent weight of 34 average motor vehicles.
Babson College New Move out Policy:
  • Residence Life required that all students complete a check out with a staff member. There was no express option for students to leave on their own.
  • Any item(s) left behind resulted in an improper check out fine.
  • A check list of instructions for how to properly check out was shared with students via email, flyer in campus mailbox, bulletin board postings in the halls, posting on the Residence Life website, posting on Life@Babsonand meetings with Residence Life staff.
  • Flyers were posted in all the halls with the locations of recycling/donation stations, as well as trash dumpsters.
  • The fine for improper check out was increased to $200 for anyone who did not complete a check out with a Residence Life staff member, left any belongings behind in their room or suite common area, or did not comply with any of the instructions in the check list for how to properly check out.
New Sustainability event:  Ice Kream and Klean
  • Rolled into this year’s senior week activities, Eco Reps gave out ice cream to seniors who were packing up their rooms.
  • Facilities provided boxes and packaging tape during this event and seniors who already  had their rooms packed up received a captain’s hat that they could wear during their Senior Cruise that night.
New Sustainability Marketing Efforts
  • Eco Reps worked on providing more cohesive marketing and organization for the donations and recycling stations this year in order to decrease the end of the year move out waste.
  • Created a new process for donating including new signage to indicate where to put donations and recyclables.
  • The Eco Reps created a video called Slash the Trash (video below) that went out to all of the students with a description of what to do with their unwanted items at the end of the year.

 

 

Dallase Scott, Manager of the Sustainability Office and the Eco Reps Program, said of the semester’s growth as a whole, “I am thrilled to see the continued sustainability progress across this campus. More importantly, this progress is not emanating solely from the Sustainability office but from all corners of the Babson campus. To me, that is true sustainability.”
Embodying the notion of ‘true sustainability’ going forward into 2013, Babson hopes to continue to enhance and improve their current sustainability efforts by educating, engaging, and exciting students, staff, and faculty around sustainably while reducing waste impacts, maximizing resources efficiency, and modeling long-term sustainable business management.Through green efforts and education, Babson hopes to offer its students sustainability education they can apply throughout their lives.
This year, Babson graduates took the Graduation Pledge to become a part of a global community of responsible women and men who are committed to improving society and the environment through the workplace. Signatories wore a pledge ribbon on their gowns during commencement as a public display of their intent to fulfill the graduation commitment.
Pledge: “Through the application of entrepreneurial thought and action, I pledge to integrate elements of environmental, social, and economic sustainability not the business practices in which I partake, in order to create resilient, sustainable prosperity.”
Shoney Yakujanov ’12 Green Tower President said of the pledge: “As the future business leaders of tomorrow, we will have the power to impact positive change as well as to help the world avoid great socio-environmental dangers. As ‘Uncle Ben’ once said, ‘With great power comes great responsibility.’ Doing good just feels good. And you know a true Babson student will find ways to explore and connect entrepreneurial thought and action to sustainable development in order to do good in the world.” 

By Hilary Katulak, hkatulak@babson.edu , 781-239-4548 | 06/26/2012 09:00