Going green is a phrase that is frequently tossed around in media campaigns, and those same campaigns are continually asserting that little progress is being made in the ‘green movement’.

Whether your goals this year are simply going to school or also include going green, it is probably easier than you think to contribute to recycling efforts on your campus.  Recycling bins are typically strategically placed near trash cans.  Is it really so hard to toss your pop bottle into the recycling bin rather than the trash can?  Furthermore, many on-campus residence halls across the country are encouraging residents to recycle by placing large recycling bins in or near the buildings, and in Spring 2011 Kansas State University placed blue bins in each student’s room, to make recycling simple and easy.

If going green is something for the individual, then sustainability is the buzzword for larger organizations.  Universities across the country are working towards becoming more sustainable, and several universities, such as K-State, Columbia, University of Washington: North Sound, Syracuse, Oregon, and many, many more, are working on LEED certified buildings, structures, and sustainability plans (for more information about LEED certification, click here).

So if your college is trying to do their part to help the planet, why not do yours?  Here are some simple tips for recycling on campus.

1. Keep a recycling bin in your room.

Keeping a recycling bin in your living space will stop you from tossing bottles, cans, or paper into the trash because it’s convenient.  When you make recycling as easy as throwing something away, it becomes something you will enjoy doing.

2. Keep empty bottles in your bookbag.

If you buy a bottle of soda in the morning to keep you awake, don’t toss it in the trash when you’re done.  Keep it with you until you come across a recycling bin.  Who knows, maybe you can even fill it up at the drinking fountain and get a little more use out of it before discarding it.

3. Use both sides of computer paper.

Using both sides of computer paper is one of the easiest ways to recycle.  Print pages double-sided, or print things like maps, directions, schedules, etc., on the back of papers you no longer need.  When both sides are used up, take the paper to a recycling bin!

4. Tell your friends!

Telling your friends that you recycle might make them see the value of recycling; similarly, knowing your friends recycle can motivate you to continue your recycling efforts.

Emma Brace is a sophomore at Kansas State, where she is an engineering major.  She keeps a recycling bin in her room, and enjoys playing tennis, drinking frozen mochas, and playing board games.  She also writes a blog, Adventures in Wildcatland, where she rambles about movies, events, and college life in general.