Goodbye, Goodbuy! starts next week at RIT

Recycling program saved 35 tons from landfills and raised $24,700 last year

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A. Sue Weisler

More than 35 tons of items were donated and sold in last year’s Goodbye, Goodbuy! recycling and sustainability program at RIT. Collection begins next week for the sale which is scheduled for Aug. 22-26 in Clark Gym.

One of the largest college recycling and sustainability programs in the country is set to begin Monday, when the third annual Goodbye, Goodbuy! event kicks off as students begin to move out at the end of the academic year at Rochester Institute of Technology.

Up to 200 volunteers are needed to help collect, weigh, sort, store and sell items the RIT students will donate rather than throw out. The items will be sorted, cleaned and sold at thrift store prices to incoming students during orientation week Aug. 22-26.

“This is a program that we’re all passionate about—we wouldn’t be spending finals week doing this if we weren’t all passionate about it,” said Goodbye, Goodbuy! program manager Erica Hickey, a fourth-year advertising and public relations major from Byron, N.Y. “We’ve measured the success of the program and we know the impact we’ve made on the RIT campus.”

Although other colleges in the country may encourage students to recycle rather than throw away items, the numbers involved in RIT’s Goodbye, Goodbuy! student-run program are staggering:

  • More than 35 tons of items were collected last year as students moved out. That is 70,000 pounds of waste not being sent to a landfill and not being paid by the college to be hauled away.
  • $24,700 was raised by selling the donated items to incoming students. The money will be used to continue the program.
  • More than 200 students, faculty, staff and administrators helped in the effort last year.
  • The program has 14 paid staff members this year.
  • Seven tractor-trailers will be storing collected items in B Lot during the summer, and RIT has provided three containers for storage.
  • Three box trucks and three golf carts will be used to help transport items and people to and from the processing hubs.

Collection begins Monday and continues through Saturday.

Donation areas will be marked with the Goodbye, Goodbuy! logo on every dorm floor and near dumpsters on campus apartment complexes. Those living in off-campus housing including Park Point who would like to participate can drop items off at Sol Heumann Hall Study Room on the first floor for processing.

Donations have included small appliances, furniture, clothing, toiletries—just about everything you can imagine in a college dorm room.

“Last year we even received electronics, Xboxes and laptops,” Hickey said.

Unidentified liquids, weapons, alcohol and prescription medication will not be accepted.

New this year, opened or perishable food including fruits and vegetables can be collected. As a member of the Post Landfill Action Network, Goodbye, Goodbuy! has arranged for those items to be donated to local organizations the same day.

“Our primary goal is to divert waste,” Hickey said. Saving students money, having the program pay for itself and getting students thinking about sustainability are all benefits of the program.

Student volunteers are still needed. A training session is scheduled for 2 p.m. Sunday in the Campus Center, Room 1010. Volunteers receive a free T-shirt and can shop at the sale a day before anyone else.

To volunteer, sign up online. Visit the RIT Goodbye, Goodbuy! page on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or contact for more information.