Bailey McKeon ’22
1. Bring a reusable water bottle.
Rather than taking a fountain cup or asking for a bottle of water, bring your water bottle and use the soda fountains to fill your glass with your drink of choice. Reducing your use of non-reusable items directly reduces your waste.
2. Invest in reusable utensils.
Buying a set of utensils that you can use each time you pick up to-go food from Mather will entirely diminish your need for the plastic spork provided for you.
3. Don’t take what you don’t need.
If you bring a reusable water bottle and have reusable utensils, don’t grab the blue fountain cup only to throw it out when you leave. This is wasteful and without reason!
4. Trash your items wisely.
It’s devastating to walk by Mather and see the trash cans outside overflowing with trash from our to-go meals. If you see a trash can already overfilled, or one that is entirely stuffed, find another trash can to deposit your waste.
5. Be mindful about what you are actually going to eat.
With everything packed up to-go, it’s easy to grab a few different meals, only to go sit down to eat and realize you aren’t going to eat about half of what you took with you. Only take what you are actually going to eat to avoid generating unnecessary food waste. You can plan your meals ahead of time by using the app “DineOnCampus,” which posts what is “on the menu” at Mather and the Bistro for the day. Pre-planning your meals will help you avoid grabbing random things that you may later decide you aren’t going to eat.
6. Separate items that can be recycled.
Reducing your waste is the best way to be more sustainable, but with the items that are necessary for you, please take the extra time to decipher which ones are recyclable and find a place to recycle them. Hartford is unique in that its recycling system is single stream, meaning that all recyclable items can be recycled together. This makes recycling much easier, so please take the time to do it. Don’t surrender to the convenience of a trash can!
7. Compost if you can!
Although there aren’t really many composting options back at your dorm, if you find a way to compost on campus, please do so (and share how to with the rest of us so we can all learn how to be better)!