Environmental Club and Terracycle promote recycling on campus

The university's environmental club and Residence Hall Association partnered with Terracycle to bring a new recycling contest to campus.

The competition, which started after fall break, allows students to turn in materials such as candy wrappers, chip bag wrappers and juice boxes into collection boxes in their residence halls, said environmental club president Brooke Long.  
Long, a junior geology major and environmental science minor, said the club partnered with RHA to help promote the competition.

In a PowerPoint made by environmental club members, the club said the purpose of bringing Terracycle to campus was to help students understand they can recycle some things normally perceived to be trash. 

TerraCycle splits up their different programs into what they call brigades. According to the PowerPoint, there are two main brigades on campus: the Lays Chip Bag Brigade and the Candy Wrapper Brigade.  

However, most students have never heard of the competition. Freshman business major Elle Gargano, who lives in Colby Hall, said she had not heard about the competition. She said it might have been because of Colby Halloween, which took place Oct. 23. 

Another student, Layne Miller, who lives in King Hall, had not heard of the competition either.  The only advertising for the contest was a small piece of paper on a bulletin board covered by other advertisements and flyers, she said.

RHA is doing their part by having their Eco-Reps post information in the hopes of promoting the contest. The Eco-Rep position is an elected official within each residence hall that either posts information or raises awareness for green activities and recycling.  Mary-Catherine Stockman, a freshman Nutrition major and Eco-Rep for Milton Daniel Hall, said she had posted flyers around the hall in order to raise awareness.

Long said the environmental club has also posted flyers around the dorms, as well as post the contest in TCU Announce on Oct. 15.

Tom Szaky founded Terracyle in 2001 by making organic fertilizer with worm feces, according to the Terracycle website. Now his company works on "upcycling" materials. Upcycling is the process of using trash and other waste materials to make new products.

Terracycle plans to upcycle the materials gathered to make backpacks and other school materials after the contest ends in December. To see some of the products they can make, visit their website here.