Campus News

Bowdoin "Dump & Run" Gathers Items for Huge Yard Sale

Story posted May 17, 2002

Bowdoin College will participate in the national "Dump & Run" program by holding a "yard sale" of discarded student possessions from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, June 8, at Dayton Arena on the Bowdoin campus.

Started by a graduate student at the University of Richmond in 2000, "Dump & Run" is a waste prevention program that diverts many of the good, usable items left behind by college students from Dumpsters and local landfills.

The items are collected, sorted and tagged, then sold at a yard sale. Proceeds from the sale go to local non-profit organizations. In the case of the Bowdoin Dump & Run sale, proceeds will be divided among community non-profits that provide volunteers to help with the event.

According to Dump & Run (, it is estimated that the average college student generates 640 pounds of solid waste each year. In addition, colleges experience a significant spike in trash generated at the end of each spring semester as students pack up, clean out and leave campus.

Students have been known to discard such perfectly good items as computer printers, televisions, VCRs, furniture, lamps, hairdryers, small refrigerators, sports equipment, bicycles, books, small appliances, and clothing. These types of items and more are expected at the Bowdoin Dump & Run sale.

Unopened food items and leftover laundry detergent will also be collected for shelters and food pantries in the Brunswick area.

Bowdoin's Dump & Run is being coordinated by the Office for a Sustainable Bowdoin. This office concentrates on reducing the College's impact on the environment through integrated waste management, energy conservation, purchasing, and alternative transportation.

The Sustainable Bowdoin Office sees many benefits to the Bowdoin Dump & Run effort. It will greatly reduce the amount sent to the landfill (as well as save on landfill tipping fees), give others the opportunity to get use out of good items otherwise headed for the trash, and generate funds for community non-profits.

Large collection boxes have been placed in all College dorms and houses, with Dump & Run signs directing departing students to leave their unwanted items. Campus Dumpsters have been draped with banners encouraging students not to trash their unwanted possessions, but to leave them for Dump & Run. The Sustainable Bowdoin Office has already started to retrieve dozens of items from the drop off points.

Among the local agencies that will benefit from the Dump & Run sale are the Trinidad Sister City Program, Sweetser, Volunteers of America, Mid Coast Senior Health Center, Habitat for Humanity, Kiwanis, Maine Center for Justice, Environment and Democracy, and Mid Coast Cheerleaders Association.

For more information about the Bowdoin Dump & Run sale, call (207) 725-3086.

Information on the national Dump & Run program can be found at

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