Campus Move Out

Roger Guzowski

Roger Guzowski


The end of the school year is coming. With it, if you are a residential campus, comes one of the biggest waste and recycling events of the year: student move out.

To help make your move out a diversion success story, below are five tips, along with links to prior blog posts, that can give you more in-depth information.

1. Plan early. Things get incredibly busy at the last minute. Remember that at some point students will have to try to cram everything from a 10 x 15 room into the trunk of a car, or even just a suitcase (hint: chances are it won’t fit). Try to get students to plan now, before final exams start, to make storage, shipping, or donation arrangements, or to plan extra trips home. In many cases, they will have virtually no time between when finals end and when they have to be out of their rooms.

Planning for Student Move Out

2. Don’t judge. Stuff is typically not left behind because students are wasteful. Stuff is typically left behind because students only realize at the last minute that everything from their room doesn’t fit into their car. Recognizing that can help you develop a plan to recycle or donate items that do get left behind. It can also help you communicate a “plan now, before it’s too late” message to your students.

Student Move Out Day, Part 2: The Surge Begins

3. Identify your goal. Do you just want to keep the items students leave behind out of the trash? Do you want to raise money selling stuff that students leave behind? Do you want to foster town-gown relations by donating to a local shelter or charity? Your goal will impact the logistics of the program you establish.

Student Move Out Day, Part 3: Managing the Surge

4. Where does stuff go? Remember that many of the people helping students move out are friends and family that aren’t familiar with the building and don’t know where to go. Directional signs can be a huge help to ensure stuff ends up in the proper location and properly diverted for recycling or donation.

Student Move Out Day, Part 4: Where Do I Go?

5. Please, please, please. For the love of all they consider sacred, remind students NOT to leave their stuff next to the trash dumpster while they go to get the car or go back upstairs to get another load of stuff. There is a very high likelihood it won’t end well.

An Open Letter to Students During Move Out

6. If you’re feeling overwhelmed, simplify. Break the chaos down into manageable pieces. Focus on six important waste streams.

Making The Most of Student Move Out

oxford collection

Define the Scope

The scope of your project is main objective you are looking to solve for your space and your sustainability goals. Determine where Oxford receptacles need to be placed for optimal use.

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