Student organization promotes sustainability efforts on campus
Written by McKenna Mirsky
Keep TJC Beautiful will host “Recycle Fest” from 4 to 6 p.m. Nov. 14 at the Quad, which is located between the Vaughn Library and Jenkins Building.
The event will have a special guest David Wallace, who is an artist who makes all his pieces out of trash and recyclable items. The event will also have trivia games that bring awareness to recycling and offer attendees a reusable water bottle and straw.
Keep TJC Beautiful focuses on making the campus a clean and sustainable place. The organization hosts recycling events from 2 to 4 p.m. every other Thursday at the Student-Residential parking lot 6, which is located between Hudnall Hall and the Baldwin Facilities and Construction Building.
Keep TJC Beautiful accepts various recyclable items including plastics, paper, cardboard and newspapers and magazines. The plastic items must be completely empty or lightly rinsed before disposing and any caps must be removed. The only plastics accepted are Polyethylene Terephthalate (PETE) and High-Density Polyethylene (HDPE). These symbols can be found on the labels of the product. Recyclable types of paper include scrap paper, printer paper, junk mail and shredded paper. However, if the paper being disposed of contains sensitive information, it must be shredded before it’s recycled. Any forms of cardboard can be recycled as well as all types of newspapers and magazines. However, plastic bags and glass items are not accepted.
The Chairperson of Keep TJC Beautiful Megan Oswald wants “to keep TJC as beautiful as possible.” Oswald said the organization accomplishes this through environmental sustainability acts, recycling and attempting to make the campus an overall clean place.
“It’s our campus,” Oswald said. “We should be proud of where we stay and so if we just have a dirty campus with trash laying around that isn’t something to be proud of.”
Oswald explains why she desires to encourage students to recycle.
“It’s our future,” Oswald said. “We’re going to be the ones who are going to have to eventually pick up all the trash. It’s either picking up the trash now or living with it later. If we’re able to go and pick up the trash, pick up the recyclables and have that impact, then it’s something to be proud of.”
Oswald is concerned with how people’s actions are impacting not just the campus, but also the world.
“We’re killing animals. We’re polluting the oceans. We’re polluting everything,” Oswald said. “Our whole future is based on it.”
A participating member of Keep TJC Beautiful Samuel Ortiz wants to spread awareness about the impact people have on the environment.
“I would tell them about our future, where we’re going and how we don’t want to keep going the way we’re going,” Ortiz said. “We want to start recycling and helping not just our school TJC, but the Earth.”
Not only does Ortiz desire students to be informed about recycling, but have active participants join Keep TJC Beautiful.
“I want more awareness and maybe more people to join and help our cause,” Ortiz said. “I just want more people aware of what’s going on.”
Oswald describes what she enjoys most about being involved in Keep TJC Beautiful, which is “having a place or like a title where you’re able to impact others.”
She also enjoys using her leadership position to bring awareness about the importance of recycling.