Student waste during move out presents many nuisance and accessibility issues and universities have started to create solutions to address it. These programs need to be scaled up and supplemented to meet the needs.

  • Expand collaboration with universities on engaging students in approach to reducing waste associated with student living (e.g., furniture and appliances). There are existing efforts that need to be scaled up as well as additional solutions to resolve the waste surge when students leaves at the end of the school year.
  • Mattresses are especially a huge waste issues that need creative reuse/upscaling solutions.
  • DPW should produce targeted guidelines and resources for student renters, and those materials should be made available on the academic calendar (so, mailed to all Oakland addresses in late August, for example).
  • Incentive programs for landlords to accommodate cardboard recycling stations on their properties may be another opportunity.
  • Strengthen Clutter for a Cause by involving the Department of Public Works Environmental Services.
  • Replicate the model of Clutter for a Cause with Carlow and CMU.
  • Expand the University of Thriftburgh model where items are stored over summer for students of all Oakland Universities to reuse item left by the graduating classes.
  • Develop an online tool/group to support reuse and upscaling of items.
  • Develop material/education sessions to help manage the volume of items owned so that students are not overwhelmed when loading their car and leave reusable/functioning items in the trash for lack of space in their vehicle/lack of planning.
  • Develop an innovation competition to deal with hard to recycle student waste (e.g., mattresses).

When to start: 0-2 years

Duration: Ongoing

Estimated costs: $ (out of $$$$)

Project lead(s): Institutions

Project partner(s): Free Store, VVA, Goodwill, DPW, Construction Junction

Potential funding source(s): Institutions, grants

Examples, illustrations, data