Program educates students on recycling importance

UNA is stepping up its game on recycling, but the campus is still in the process of integrating the recycling mindset into students across campus.

Recycling bins are available in the dorms, but not on every floor, students said.

“We’ve tried having recycling bins in every room in the past, but the permanent bins seem to disappear,” said Florence Recycling Education Outreach Coordinator Rachel Mansell. “We’re trying to find something that works.”

Mansell said the city of Florence previously gave students recycling bags to use in their rooms, but students have not found them effective.

There are blue recycling bins at the bottom floors of Rice and Rivers hall. Students can take their recycling downstairs and drop it in the bins on their way to classes, Mansell said.

Freshman Bria Paschal said she would be happy to use a recycling bin in her dorm room.

“The bin downstairs is not convenient for me,” Paschal said. “Maybe it would be a good idea to have a recycling container on every floor of the dorms.”

Freshman Kenterius Hall said there is a recycling bin on his floor. He also said he would use a recycling container in his dorm room.

“My roommate drinks a lot of bottled water,” Hall said. “There is a colony of empty water bottles in our dorm.”

Leading Edge Institute, a state program which serves to train young college women in Alabama state leadership, is taking steps to educate UNA students about recycling.

At UNA, the Center for Women’s Studies sponsors LEI.

Coordinator of Women’s Studies Emily Kelley said there has been a lot of confusion about what items are recyclable and which items are not.

Seniors Kali Daniel and Carrie Reed took on the task of recycling education for their LEI service project this year.

“Kali and I wanted to do something that involved sustainability for our leadership action project,” Reed said. “We settled on education about recycling.”

Daniel and Reed designed signs and posters that explain which items are recyclable and which items are not.

“They have taken the campuses already existing recycling plan and they’re taking it several steps forward,” Kelley said.

These signs were posted around campus earlier this semester, Kelley said.

“This is an effort to eliminate the confusion and educate everybody about recycling,” she said.