5 simple ways to be eco-friendly in college


Photo by Maria Ilves on Unsplash

Buying bamboo utensils are a great way to reduce your everyday plastic use.

Alexis Nieman, Media Editor

As the threat of global warming and climate change becomes more and more prevalent in our everyday lives, people are starting to take more effective measures in order to be more sustainable. College students who live on campus may not think that they can do much to be more eco-friendly, but there are several easy ways that students can cut down on waste and be more resourceful. 

1. Get reusable utensils

One way to cut down on waste within the dorms is investing in a set of reusable utensils. Sets of bamboo utensils can be affordable, they are organic and will last a long time. Instead of grabbing forks, spoons and knives from Kessel and throwing them out after each use, having a set that you can use over and over again will save you hundreds of plastic utensils from ending up in landfills or water sources. Getting some metal straws will be beneficial if you are someone who does not exactly love using the paper ones provided on campus. There are many colors and patterns available, so you can be sure to get the ones that you enjoy.

2. Invest in a good water bottle

Instead of constantly purchasing plastic water bottles around campus, getting a good, reusable, water bottle will save plastic waste and a ton of meal plan money. With your reusable bottle, you can fill it up with ice and water for free in Kessel as well as at the many water refill stations that are scattered around campus. There are Pace water bottles available for purchase in the bookstore, which can be bought for Flex money. Buying a quality water bottle will last you a very long time.

3. Turn off electricity when you leave the room

One of the most forgotten things to do is turning off all electronics and lights when leaving a room. Although students who live on campus are not directly paying a monthly bill for the electricity that they use, it is a big help to the environment when you preserve energy that can be used for future use instead of wasting it. Doing something as little as turning off the TV or switching off the light will ultimately help to reduce your carbon footprint in the future. 

4. Use the shuttle when you can

If you have a car on campus, you might find it much easier to drive yourself when you have to go into town. However, by taking the shuttle to and from town, students can cut down on their use of gas, which will help reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Driving less will also help you save on gas. Additionally, as the weather gets nicer, walking or biking into town is a great option while being eco-friendly and getting some exercise.

5. Recycle

This may seem obvious, but there are many people on campus who do not separate their trash from recyclable items. Getting two separate bins or bags makes it easier to throw recyclables into one, and waste in the other. Recycling helps to reduce pollution and the amount of waste that is sent to landfills. 


There are many easy ways that students can become more eco-friendly without spending much money at all. Investing in reusable items will last a long time and will help save hundreds, or even thousands, pieces of plastic from ending up in landfills. Little by little, students can make a difference by doing little things every day.