Greener than the Grinch

If all you want for Christmas is a healthy, green planet, then USF is the place for you.

Indeed, throughout the year, USF’s Environmental Safety Office (ESO), an office within the Department of Facilities Management, works to provide guidance, service, education, and outreach in all areas environmental to create a safer and more eco-friendly university campus and community. Through full-fledged programs, like USF Recycles; student-to-student outreach, like Ecoeducation; and paid on-campus job positions, like the Neighborhood Clean Up Crew — ESO helps the University comply and supersede procedural requirements of city, state, and federal law, while educating (and perhaps, inspiring) students and members of the community to make a more conscious effort to take care of the planet.

Of course, the urge to splurge might override your steam for green this holiday and exam week season; so if you find yourself lost amidst the wrapping paper, egg nog, coffee cups and “Blue Books,” be sure to thank the fine folks from ESO, who are working to keep your wrappers and reciepts off of the streets and into the proper recycling bins!

USF Students Help Keep Campus Clean and Green Through on Campus Jobs

 

Don’t try tossing your soda can into the compost! Yayun Lu, a junior marketing and advertising major, works in the cafeteria as an eco-educator and will help inform students on the proper way to recycle. (Photo by Allison Fazio)

Don’t try tossing your soda can into the compost! Yayun Lu, a junior marketing and advertising major, works in the cafeteria as an eco-educator and will help inform students on the proper way to recycle. (Photo by Allison Fazio)

Yayun Lu, Eco-Educator    Yayun Lu, a junior marketing and advertising double major, helps promote sustainability in USF’s dining hall with her on-campus job as eco-educator. Lu spends her shifts monitoring waste bins and educating her peers about proper recycling during peak lunch and dinner hours.As eco-educator, Lu is responsible for guiding students on how to dispose of their leftovers and waste products in the correct bins: either compost, recycling, or landfill. Though she doesn’t have to intervene much, she said, a common mistake of caf diners is recycling greasy or oily take-out boxes, when they should be composted.

USF Recycles has teamed up with Bon Appetit, USF’s meal provider, to ensure that dining hall compost will benefit the University, according to the USF Recycle’s online recycling brochure. After being sent to a compost facility in Vacaville, CA, the compost returns to campus as landscape grounding and fertilizer for the Community Garden.

Katoa Ahau, freshman exercise and sports science major, dons his collection gear and protective equipment before every shift, as a part of USF’s meighborhood clean-up crew. (Photo by Allison Fazio)

Katoa Ahau, freshman exercise and sports science major, dons his collection gear and protective equipment before every shift, as a part of USF’s meighborhood clean-up crew. (Photo by Allison Fazio)

Katoa Ahau, The NeighborhoodClean Up Crew

A dual season athlete with a full load of courses, freshman Katoa Ahau, an exercise and sports science major, applied for an on-campus job with ESO’s neighborhood clean up crew (NCU) to take advantage of the flexible hours and to learn more about the environment.

As a student worker for NCU, Ahau spends his shifts collecting and sorting litter from the residential streets within and surrounding campus borders. The black canvas litter bag he carries along with him is divided in three parts (compost, recycling, and landfill) to ensure all items are disposed of correctly.

In addition to keeping USF’s neighborhood clean, Ahau has also mastered the do’s and dont’s of recycling. “I see styrofoam around, and I used to think it was compostable — but it’s definitely not. It’s not even recyclable yet,” he said.

According to Ahau, most of what he finds while picking up the streets between upper and lower campus are products from the cafeteria.

Inform yourself on how to recycle through USF Recycle’s online recycling brochure.

Last 5 posts by Allison Fazio

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