On Friday, July 19th, University Facilities and Services hosted its ninth annual Shred Fest event in collaboration with Iron Mountain, the company that provides secure document destruction services for the University. Students, employees, and affiliates visited Zone 3 South between 6:30 AM and 1:30 PM where they were able to safely dispose and recycle unwanted personal documents for free. Despite the extreme heat and humidity, the successful event continued to bring smiles to the faces of volunteers and participants.
How does the event run so efficiently? Once participants drive up, they are greeted by eager volunteers who help unload their documents into lockable 65-gallon containers. The containers are then loaded into the on-site Iron Mountain truck where they are securely shredded. A live camera inside the truck even allows participants to watch the shredding process if they chose to do so. All shredded paper is then recycled. The event helps prevent identity theft all while reducing landfill waste and protecting the environment.
One of the volunteers, Facilities Customer Service Center Operation Support Specialist Mike Hendricks, explains how “it’s a good overall experience to help the University community to rid their documents and personal data. It’s a good all-around event.”
The Shred Fest first began in 2011 and has been increasing in popularity ever since. A total of 15,900 pounds (7.95 tons) of paper was collected at this year’s event. Combined with previous years’ collections, a grand total of 164,880 pounds (82.44 tons) of paper have been recycled through the Shred Fest!
In order to give the entire University community an opportunity to clear out their yearly paper collection while maintaining the same security standard, a new 5 bags/boxes per person policy has been established. In previous year’s collections, the heightened popularity and tonnage of material collected made it a challenge for the on-site shred truck to keep up. But with the new limit, this year’s Shred Fest ended successfully with satisfied participants and will help ensure future Shred Fest events run smoothly. The limit allowed for more efficient service since the paper brought by each participant could be shredded faster. As Sustainability Coordinator Amy Kadrie puts it, “The event has become less about the total pounds of paper collected, and more about providing great customer service for an event that participants can enjoy and trust.”
Next year’s Shred Fest will mark an important milestone as the 10th annual event. Until then, EcoPark may be an alternative for those who would like to recycle their documents and other materials.
The success of this event was made possible by the many volunteers who worked at Shred Fest, Iron Mountain, and everyone who came to recycle their documents. Event volunteers included Sherin George (Support Operations), Olivia Giovannini-Dolan (Support Operations), Emily Su (Support Operations), Jefvern White (Support Operations), Kim VanOman (Facilities Customer Service Center), Mike Hendricks (Facilities Customer Service Center), Axel Colon (Materials Management), Haniya Ahmed (Grounds), Jacob Smith (Grounds), Mike Chudyk (Grounds), Andrew Bankovich (Grounds), Dan Agate (Grounds), and Saleem Rahimzai (Mail Serives). Amy Kadrie thanks all of the volunteers, supporters and participants of the event, and sends an extra thank you to Patrick Hamilton of Iron Mountain (pictured above) who has worked with her for all nine of the Shred Fest events held.
Written by Emily Su, Class of 2022