Garbage in the quad forces students to reevaluate

A group of faculty and students worked together to gather all of the school’s trash to put in the quad April 19. The goal is to get students to recycle more.


Faculty and students collected and displayed a week’s worth of the school’s trash in the quad during the week of April 16. photo by Lily Hart

by Lily Hart, Writer

Starting at the beginning of last week, there has been an accumulating amount of garbage bags placed in the quad each day, with messages attached to them such as: “could have been composted.” According to social studies teacher Alicia Stewart, one of the projects’ initiators, the execution was largely thanks to the work of the work study crew that already deals with the school’s trash and recycling, as well as science teacher Maddie Lueke’s Environmental Science class and a small number of Recycling Committee members.

“We want students to see how much we throw away each day or during a week’s period, because it’s so much,” Stewart said. “The goal is to get students to recycle. It’s absurd how much is trashed rather than recycled when they’re both right there.”

Stewart says that in three days, 78 bags of trash were collected, and in five bags of trash, one and half bags were full of actual trash, two and half were recyclable, and one was compostable. When going around collecting recycling from the recycling cans, the whole building of Donnelly had one bag.

“The recycling movement has been around since the 90’s, and it makes me sad that we still have to push it,” Stewart said. “Earth Day is Sunday, and we were just looking for a way to get it on people’s minds and to make them look at it– visually see it.”