Commencement Ceremonies Let Nothing Go To Waste
Results are in for Millersville University’s inaugural Zero Waste commencement ceremonies. Not only was it the first time for zero waste at Millersville but it was also a success.
This initiative aimed to eliminate waste produced by commencement-related activities for both graduate and undergraduate studies ceremonies. Partnering with Waste Management, Inc., North America’s leading environmental company, the goal was set for at least 90 percent of all the waste generated at the commencement ceremonies to be diverted from a landfill.
Members of Millersville’s sustainability committee and local volunteers helped make the event a success. The committee placed zero waste event signage in highly visible locations. There were receptacles for recyclables, trash and organics strategically placed near the concessions and stadium entrances. During the event, bags were checked and replaced as needed. There were also students serving as “green guides” to help point guests in the right direction, such as suggesting they reuse cups instead of taking another.
“The zero waste commencement ceremonies exceeded expectations. This accomplishment shows how hard Millersville University has been working to increase our sustainability,” said Roger Bruszewski, vice president for finance and administration.
The final total from the two-day commencement activities came to 760 pounds (640 pounds recycling; 120 composting) of materials generated. It was indeed a zero waste event with 100 percent of the materials generated at both commencement ceremonies eliminated from going to a landfill.
In the future, zero waste events might go even bigger with plans to expand to other sustainable practices, such as water and energy conservation, carbon emissions and use of alternative energy.
For more information, visit Millersville’s sustainability committee website.