The AS Recycle Center is an on-campus recycling service with an almost all-student staff. We gather recyclables from approximately 650 barrels in the academic buildings, the residence halls, and the dining areas on campus, and then sort their contents by hand. We operate mainly as a collection and redistribution entity with the goal of eliminating contaminant sources in the university's recycle stream before the materials go to Northwest Recycling, Whatcom County's recycling business. Because Western's students and staff come here with different levels of recycling knowledge, our Education Coordinator works to bring a basic knowledge of recycling practices to all members of WWU's community, and further reduce the amount of waste contamination in the recycling, as well as the amount of recyclables that go into landfills.
The mission of the AS Recycle Center is to provide the opportunity for students, faculty, and staff to recycle on campus, to educate the University community on the recycling process at Western, and to continually increase our collection efforts in order to reduce Western's waste stream. In addition to this, we provide student employment opportunities and work experience, specifically in recycling and waste management.
In 1971, a small group of College of the Environment (formerly Huxley College) students and the University General Stores started one of the first campus recycling programs in the country here at Western. The group of ten students collected about 233 lbs. of recyclables from the university’s campus every day. In 1976, the Associated Students of Western Washington University incorporated the Recycle Center, and began its commitment to the program. Today, a full-time coordinator heads a group of 15-20 students who collect about 4,000 lbs. of recycled material every day from the blue barrels on campus. Though a lot has changed during the past fifty years, our purpose remains the same: to provide as many recycling opportunities on campus as possible, thereby reducing our consumption of natural resources and our impact on the environment.
- AS Environmental & Sustainability Programs (ESP)
- Office of Sustainability
- Sustainable Transportation Office
- Environmental Health & Safety
- Learning Environment Action Discovery (L.E.A.D.)