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Family Weekend event gets award for green thumbs

April 15, 2010

Working with thousands of people each year for ASU’s Family Weekend Welcome is a rewarding experience – it also requires a lot of energy and produces a heap of trash.

Nicole Coffin, coordinator for the Transition and Parents Program at the Mary Lou Fulton School of Education recognized this problem, and with the help of other ASU community leaders designed the Family Weekend Zero Waste Initiative. Their project was honored with this year’s President’s Award for Sustainability.

Family Weekend includes series of events designed for students and their families, including the ASU Tailgate and Send-off Breakfast.

Last year, the Family Weekend Zero Waste Initiative served more than 2,000 guests, and with help of volunteers and Aramark, the program recycled 248 lbs. of materials and composted 437 lbs. of waste. 

 “We’ve made sure that sustainability is a component of Transition and Parent programs,” said Julie Lim, outreach coordinator for the Mary Lou Fulton School of Education. “This year we expanded our efforts to include composting, as in past years only recycling was available for our program.”

Started in 2007, the Family Weekend Zero Waste began with a robust planning committee that included student volunteers, The Green Team, Sustainability Coordinator Dawn Ratcliff and Community Director for Residential Life Nichole Stenbak. The initiative now enjoys a robust 35 volunteers and a partnership with Aramark.

“We hope to continue the initiative for future programs and expand our efforts to our academic partners,” says Lim. “We hope tha our numbers help everyone put into perspective the amount of waste our university produces, but also how easy it is to be sustainable and reduce waste.” 

Team Members:
Nicole Coffin, Transition and Parent Programs
Angela Haskovec, Transition and Parent Programs
Holli Griffin, Transition and Parent Programs
Julie Lim, Transition and Parent Programs
Alexander Davis, USG Green Team
Andrew Latimer, USG Green Team
Natalie Fleming, USG Green Team
Garrett Carney, USG Green Team
Eric Tank, USG Green Team
Christina Reyes, Arnold Air Society
Dawn Ratcliffe, Ground Services

Written by Chakris Kussalanant