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What is RecycleMania

RecycleMania: Campus Race to Zero Waste is a friendly competition and benchmarking tool for college and university recycling programs to promote waste reduction activities to their campus communities. Over an 8-week period each spring, colleges across the United States and Canada report the amount of recycling and trash collected each week and are in turn ranked in various categories based on who recycles the most on a per capita basis, as well as which schools have the best recycling rate as a percentage of total waste and which schools generate the least amount of combined trash and recycling.  With each week’s updated ranking, participating schools follow their performance against other colleges and use the results to rally their campus to reduce and recycle more.

National recognition is provided to the winning school in each category on the RecycleMania website and in a national press release. Winning schools receive an award made out of recyclable materials, and win the right to host that category’s special traveling trophy for the coming year.

Competition Dates

February 2, 2020 - March 28, 2020

Categories Entered

  • Diversion: Recyclables, Food Organics, and Trash weights reported.
  • Stephen K Gaski Per Capita: Recyclables weights reported (no trash weights).
  • Food Organics: Food waste and any organic materials handled alongside food waste reported. Organics generated in office and campus residential settings and special events can be included in addition to what is collected from dining facilities.
  • GameDay Basketball: Competition based on recycling and waste diversion at a single home basketball game.
  • Electronics Recycling: Competition based on collection of scrap electronics over one-month period (March 1 - 28).
  • Case Study Competition: Share your best practices in promoting and improving recycling and waste reduction on campus.

How to Get Involved

  • Reduce the Amount of Waste you are Generating on Campus
  • Increase your Recycling
  • Recycle/Reuse your Books - Channel your inner Marie Kondo and clean off your books shelfs. Books are heavy, and recycling and diversion rates are based on weight. Books from MSU departments can be picked up at no cost by submitting a service request, or you may drop them off at the Surplus Store or the Drop-off Center.
  • Recycle your Electronics - University and personally owned electronics accepted. Available March 1 -28. Details Available Soon.
  • Become a Waste Warrior
  • Schedule an Office Clean Out - In the spirit of RecycleMania, the MSU Surplus Store & Recycling Center is offering Waste Warriors *free* Office Clean-Out collection services, including Confidential Paper Shredding, General Recycling, and Surplus Goods. Use this opportunity to tidy your office and keep your waste out of the landfill!


Office Clean-Outs will take place between Monday 2/10 and Tuesday 3/10. You and your colleagues will have two full business days and one partial business day to utilize the collection services. You will put your items in hampers that we will provide for you.

SSRC will drop off the hampers between 8-10 a.m. on the first day, you'll keep it for two more full days, and SSRC will pick them up on the fourth day between 8-10 a.m. 

Hamper drop-offs take place M-F, with the final drop-off on Tuesday 3/10.

Choose your 3 Hamper Services

Select which service(s) you would like for each of up to three hampers, with a maximum of one Confidential Shred. (If your office is doing an extensive clean out and would likely need additional hampers, please let us know and we’ll see if we can accommodate.)

Select from the following:

    • Confidential Shred (max. of 1 hamper)
    • Surplus/Recycling (1, 2, or 3 hampers)


Registration is available to Waste Warriors only, and is arranged on a first-come first-served basis. As a Waste Warrior, you will be SSRC’s main contact for the clean out. We ask that you please:

    • Print out correct signage and adhere to hamper (for Recycling or Surplus hampers only; Confidential Shred hamper comes labeled)
    • Check the hampers occasionally to ensure they're not overflowing or contaminated with inappropriate materials
    • At time of pick-up, ensure hampers are located in designated room (same as drop-off location)
    • Be available during the Office Clean Out in the event that we need to unlock the Confidential Shred hamper. (Our policy states that the customer who made the service request must be present.)
    • Contact SSRC with any questions
To register for an Office Clean-Out, please fill out the attached Request Form and send back to SSRC's Education Coordinator at I'll respond with your schedule based on availability.