At the end of the academic year, packing up and moving out is an inevitable chore that University of Rochester students are faced with once all the hard work and fun activities have come to an end. Removing and containing masses of food, clothing, books, and other materials from a dorm room to a new location can be daunting. It often turns out that all the bags, suitcases, and vehicles acquired to move are suddenly far too small, and as a result much of the supplies, clothing, food, furniture, and electronics are left behind. An unfortunate consequence of this is much material gets left behind in dumpsters.
But luckily for the fifth year in a row, University Facilities and Services was here to help students dispose of extraneous material in a safe and sustainable manner. The Move-out Cleanout provides convenient ways to donate and recycle clothing, shoes, food, and electronic equipment. This is important because in the United States alone, around 33 million tons of food, 11 million tons of clothing, and over a million tons of electronic equipment end up in landfills each year. From April 30 to May 21, collection sites were placed at dormitories in order to gather non-perishable food, shoes, and clothing. The Sage Arts Center loading dock was set up to collect electronic equipment.
Once again, efforts from the Move-out Cleanout broke last year’s records. A total of 12,651 pounds of clothing were collected for Planet Aid, a global organization that collects used clothing and shoes for those in need. This result beat last year’s total by 2,000 pounds – literally a ton! The Res Quad brought in the most material collecting over 2,900 pounds. Not far behind was Susan B. Anthony with 2,525 pounds and Riverview Apartments with 2,000 pounds.
Approximately 1,656 pounds of food was collected for the Open Door Mission of Rochester which provides food and emergency housing to homeless and low income men, women, and children in Rochester. Together, the quantity of food and clothing weighed more than a Tyrannosaurus Rex!
Additionally, the total of electronic equipment collected weighed in at 2,100 pounds. This quantity was then recycled by Sunnking, a partner in recycling the University’s unwanted electronics.
Even more furniture, room supplies, and school equipment were salvaged for reuse for the Dump & Run, the annual fundraiser conducted by student group Grassroots. Member of Grassroots Ling Rao ‘14 organized the Dump & Run this year, and said that “…the Dump ‘n Run did well and collected most of its items from Riverview this year.” Last year, Riverview was also the dormitory complex that donated the highest amount of items.
To witness the Move-out Cleanout and Dump and Run in action, check out the video below featuring Ling Rao, Alice Chen ‘15, and Melissa Kullman ‘14. Thank you to all volunteers, Planet Aid, the Open Door Mission, Sunnking, and all others who made this event possible.
By Alanna Scheinerman, Class of 2013