Alex Freid '13
How did Trash 2 Treasure come about?
When I was looking for furniture as I was moving into my first apartment at the end of my freshman year at UNH, I began noticing the massive piles of perfectly usable stuff building up in or around dumpsters on the UNH campus. After finding everything I was looking for and then some, I became completely overwhelmed by the issue and began the discussion with my friends about what could be done about it.
What role to students play in making sustainability happen at UNH?
When it comes to making sustainability happen at UNH, I believe that students play the role of the true grassroots activists and organizers who help to voice the issues which are the most important and lend a helping hand to implementing real change. This is not to say that faculty and staff don't play a key role as well, but students certainly help develop projects, call for change when needed, and help educate their peers on a regular basis at UNH. At UNH, students are instrumental in everything from holding public education events, to organizing campaigns like getting the campus to switch to 100% recycled paper or getting the campus to compost more, to implementing entirely new projects on their own like Trash 2 Treasure or the Organic Garden Club.
What motivates you personally to be involved in sustainability?
I believe that it is inevitable that we will run out of oil, so we need to learn how to live sustainably in every aspect of our lives. Trash 2 Treasure for me encompassed many of these values: by saving items that were perfectly usable, we were preventing items from entering landfills, but we were also preventing the need for new items to be made by oil, packaged by oil, and shipped by oil. I believe that we need to cut down on these endless cycles of wasteful consumerism in order to ensure our safety and our survival.