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Student hopes to instill drive to recycle

April 21, 2007|By DAN DEARTH

HAGERSTOWN-The organizer of a recycling drive this week at Hagerstown Community College hopes the event's success will be the first step in starting a permanent recycling program on campus.

Mylynh Nguyen, president of the HCC Science Club and recycling drive organizer, said club members on Monday set up five 50-gallon recycling bins at HCC's Science Building to raise awareness about the importance of recycling.

The recycling drive was part of Earth Week, an event that directs attention toward environmental issues.

The Science Club encouraged faculty and students to bring in their recyclable glass, plastic and mixed paper, she said. By the end of the day Friday, the bins were full.

Nguyen said club members also monitored trash cans on campus to measure the recycling drive's success.

On Monday, they surveyed the percentage of recyclables in 10 trash cans on campus by digging through the garbage.

One of those trash cans, for example, contained 67 percent of recyclables on Monday, she said. The same trash can contained 15 percent at the end of the week.

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Nguyen said she attributed the decrease to a $21 recycling bin that the club placed next to the trash can over the last five days.

"Our events have certainly helped people become more aware of our harmful effects on the Earth," she said. "But the question is, 'How much is each person willing to change?'"

Nguyen said the Science Club is committed to maintaining a perennial recycling program in the Science Building.

A campuswide effort would need outside assistance, she said. As a result, the club is considering lobbying county leaders for support.

Terry Baker, vice president of the Washington County Commissioners, said he couldn't speak for his colleagues, but would discuss the club's proposal with the public if enough data is provided to consider the request.

ยทMylynh Nguyen, HCC Science Club president, hopes the event will start a permanent recycling program on campus.

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