PLU students, Goodwill partner for donation drive

Pacific Lutheran University and Goodwill of the Olympics and Rainier Region are partnering to reduce waste in the landfill, promote recycling, and raise revenue for job training and placement in Pierce County through “Give and Go! Moveout 2014,” a program that will accept donations from 1,500 students cleaning out their dorm rooms as the academic year comes to a close.

Beginning this week and continuing through Tues., June 3, Goodwill donation trailers will be staffed adjacent to recycle stations at four sites on the Pacific Lutheran University campus between 11 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. to collect couches, lamps, dressers, and other donated items for resell in Goodwill’s retail stores.

Pacific Lutheran University hopes to top their record of 38,000 pounds that left campus last year through donations to Goodwill, the Trinity Lutheran Church Food Bank, and Nativity House.

“So much can be reused and repurposed,” said Pacific Lutheran University Sustainability Manager Christine Coole. Last year, Pacific Lutheran University diverted 62 per cent of its waste for reuse or recycling. “If someone else can reuse the item, we want to make sure they have that opportunity.”

Pacific Lutheran University is only one of 15 colleges across the country to partner with Goodwill, Keep America Beautiful, and the College and University Recycling Coalition to launch “Give and Go! Move Out 2014,” a national effort in college sustainability living and job creation.

Sustainability at Pacific Lutheran University focuses on three key components: care for people, care for the planet, and prosperity, both now and in the future. Each year, the university recycles more than 70 per cent of its waste stream and has committed to be carbon neutral by 2020. Each year, the university consistently ranks in the top 15 colleges in the national “Recyclemania” competition.

Goodwill and Pacific Lutheran University have similar strategic goals in sustainability. This year, critical community and school household clean-up efforts will collect 1.25 million pounds of donations, generating funds to help 9,000 southwest Washington residents with job training and placement.

“Together, we can turn student donations into something that will strengthen our economy and help the environment,” said Goodwill of the Olympics and Rainier Region President and CEO Terry Hayes. “Cleaning that dorm room and supporting Goodwill will go a long way towards helping the unemployed in Washington.”