As a college student living in the dorms, it can be extremely difficult to be environmentally conscious when disposing of garbage.
When I was growing up, my family recycled just about everything. We had separate bins for paper, cardboard, aluminum, and plastic. I was taught recycling was necessary to help limit pollution and protect the environment.
Living in the dorms my first year made me realize that recycling at college was going to be difficult, if not nearly impossible. I was appalled by the amount of items that could be reused which were instead thrown away. Finding places to recycle is a challenging feat at Ferris.
Registered student organizations (RSOs) such as Ferris Recyclers, work hard to help implement a greener attitude by providing sites where students can drop off their recyclables. However, due to its limited resources, Ferris Recyclers is able to offer recycling programs in only four residence halls.
Protecting and preserving our environment goes beyond recycling; it branches into the amount of electricity and water we use in our dorms. I’ve spoken with students who leave their lights on when they go to class because they figure it’s already paid for. This is a complete waste of energy. According to lightpollution.org, America wastes approximately $2000 million on light pollution.
Many students living in the dorms take advantage of not having a monthly water bill by taking unnecessarily long showers. I admit that during my freshman year, I enjoyed standing in an extra hot shower for an extra five minutes during the chilly winter months. According to usgs.gov, the average shower uses two gallons of water per minute. My extra five minutes in the shower wasted an entire 10 gallons of water.
Another area in the dorms where water is wasted is in the laundry room. It drives me crazy that students in the dorms can’not get a refund on unused money on their laundry cards at the end of the year. This encourages students to do unnecessary loads of laundry which wastes approximately 10 gallons per load, according to usgs.gov.
Students need to be aware of ways to reduce, reuse, and recycle as they live in the dorms. We need to protect our earth for future generations. n