SUNY Canton has joined RecycleMania, an international competition that measures the success of colleges’ recycling and waste prevention efforts.
“The RecycleMania competition establishes a baseline of data for future improvement across campus,” said Matthew Burnett, who is the Green Campus Committee (GCC) Chair and an Assistant Professor in the Graphic and a Multimedia Design program. “It is important that we make sustainability a priority on our campus and in our classrooms.”
Students have been monitoring recycling levels and documenting the amount of cardboard, glass, and plastic recyclables collected. Each week, the standings are posted online for participants to see, motivating the campus community to recycle more and decrease the overall environment footprint of the college.
The challenge has been spearheaded by Accounting Instructor Christa Kelson and students Bridget Keegan and Rachel Baker, according to Burnett.
“I saw this as a great way to get involved and help out,” said Keegan. “A lot of people stop and ask what we are doing when we calculate the recyclables. We use our efforts as a means to emphasize the importance of recycling.”
The college has been expanding its overall recycling efforts with help from the GCC and other departments. During its first year, SUNY Canton will be posting college-wide results in the benchmarking division of the competition, which will allow the college to compare its results to other schools. After one year, the college will be allowed to enter the competition level and compete against itself and other colleges.
Colleges in all 50 states and six international universities are represented in the competition.
The RecycleMania competition began in 2001 as a friendly challenge between recycling coordinators at Miami University and Ohio University. The competition was meant as a way to get participants more excited about recycling.
Several publications and college indicators use RecycleMania to gauge colleges’ and universities’ collective and individual commitments to sustainability. RecycleMania has been featured in The New York Times, Newsweek, and The Boston Globe.
In addition to the RecycleMania competition, the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC) has begun a fund-raising event that will keep the campus cleaner by recycling used ink jet and laser printer cartridges, and cell phones. The semester-long “Make a Difference” campaign aims to educate and engaging the campus in conservation and environmental protection. The SAAC members have set up recycling boxes around campus to collect the used cartridges and cell phones.
SUNY Canton offers a wide variety of career-driven bachelor’s, associate, and certificate programs, as well as three master’s degrees in conjunction with SUNYIT, Utica. Most of SUNY Canton’s new four-year programs are designed so students can take them on-campus, online, or both. SUNY Canton OnLine features more than 100 courses online each semester. The college’s athletic teams belong to the NAIA’s Sunrise Conference, enabling students to compete in their respective sports for four years.
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