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UNLV Recycling Program

UNLV Recycling Program

Introduction

To pursue a volunteer service-learning project, it is important to receive and understand the formal instructions and directions in order to obtain effective learning experience. Attempting to participate in the UNLV recycling program, I was really embarrassed and unaware of what to do and what objectives I should obtain. Service-learning offers participants to practice the knowledge that they received in the classroom. The UNLV recycling program seems to be a perfect opportunity for everybody to master their skills through the analysis of recycling and problem-solving. This project aims to inform about the issue and encouraging participation in the activity that will protect the environment from pollution. While making a research, a participant should consider personal duties, contributions and the way the program may affect his or her life and the outside society.

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Team Evaluations

The UNLV recycling program requires providing clear explanation of participants’ duties, in order to give them a strict direction what to achieve. First of all, it would be effective to remind them about the purpose of recycling. For example, recycling was invented with the aim to reduce pollution, conserve energy, slow global warming, conserve energy, and reduce wastage. It is hard to resolve all of these issues but every person can help reduce waste. Individuals should understand that they can contribute their own efforts to save water and keep the air and land clean. In order to do so, individuals should change their daily behaviors and care more about how much water they use every day, taking a shower or washing the dishes. Even if everyone thinks about it, it could be rather helpful to keep the environment clean. Thus, participants of the UNLY program should be well aware of the fact that their efforts can be very useful to protect the environment.

The purpose of recycling is to protect the overall health, keeping air, land, and water clean. Every team member should make his/her own plan where he/she can outline his future activity to contribute into the program. For example, a person can share his ideas about saving water at home and discuss all the possible measures to do this. Even ordinary activities, such as washing hands or cleaning teeth can require special concern. The person who cares about the environment will never waste water, rather he/she will save it in everyday activities. MacBride (2011) assumes that humanity is at an important moment in natural and social history when every individual can stop overusing natural resources.

The Community Need

The Rebel Recycling aims to provide students with in-depth understanding how to reduce or recycle products in a timely and efficient manner. The program’s mission comprises three goals: reduce, reuse and recycle. Every student, who is a part of the team, should remember this rule and share information with other community members. Thus, reduce means to care about things and resources people use daily. For example, it is possible to reduce the amount of water, while taking a bath or a shower. We can reuse this water by cleaning the floor with it. Furthermore, recycle means sending plastic bottles or cans, or any other material for using them, in the production of new things. The UNLV recycling program raises students’ awareness, making them role models, and creates new community members. Students who take part in the program should schedule weekly pick-ups of recycled materials in the Campus location. It would be reasonable to provide special pick-ups and office clean-out beans, as well as shredding confidential documents. All these activities should be documented and analyzed, in order to develop new initiatives.

The project is not only important for the students who are team members, but it also impacts the community. Their recycling activities can encourage the community members to reduce, reuse and recycle materials they use daily. It will help the community to increase the amount of materials collected. It can become a good habit to collect and recycle used materials and send them to the factories that can produce the new ones. For example, recycling paper helps to produce new paper, and this process takes less energy than making new paper from trees.Students who participate in the program should realize that the community members can help them expand the collection of traditional recyclables.

Cultural Context

According to MacBride (2011), political ecology admits cultural values of recycling, where waist is a cultural construct. For example, recycling make materials that previously were considered as useless a valuable resource in the future production. Many entrepreneurs implement waste management operations and claim their ownership over household waste. Recycling has a specific cultural context in different countries. For example, in some developing countries, where garbage dumping is a growing concern, the population lives in slums and has no awareness of recycling. The government is insufficient to cope with rapid population growth and a huge amount of waste. Uncollected waste produces dangerous environmental health impact. Developed countries have the greatest concern to the waste materials and their recycling. Moreover, some make a big business on recycling, while others use recycling as a way of earning a living. Recycling process creates new social relations that change the understanding of local and global economies.

Changing attitudes to waste may help citizens improve the environment. Today, about 45% of glass, paper, and cardboard wasted are recovered from the domestic waste in the USA and the EU (MacBride, 2011). In Austria, Germany and Switzerland, bottle banks recover more than 75% of glass bottles consumed (MacBride, 2011). Many countries implemented policies which require the total recovery of packaging from household waist. These policies successfully diminished plastic packaging waste and polyethylene bags. Nowadays, some countries tend to replace plastic shopping bags with paper bags. All these examples demonstrate the growing awareness of people to collect household waste for recycling and develop new economies.

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Civic Engagement

Participation in recycling programs demands a personal commitment and empowers people to be a part of the project, as members of the same community. Volunteer involvement builds social capital and strengthens citizenship in society, encouraging them to experience a sense of significance and solidarity (MacBride, 2011). Recycling projects offer various possibilities for the development of relationships, strengthening the social networks. Recycling activity can lead to other beneficial changes in individual behaviors. Thus, people who are involved in recycling programs are more likely to change individual behaviors and help others to act similarly. For example, volunteers tend to care about used plastic shopping bags that pollute the environment and replace them with paper ones.

Recycle programs’ participants connect their social engagement with their own life and the world, in general. They start to be interested in recycling of the materials used at home, in the community, and the entire world. This awareness may lead them to personal projects and initiatives that could be successfully implemented in life, not only in the local community but also globally. Volunteer work in recycling programs may become a waste management option and can give different opportunities. For example, participants can hand in their bags of garbage in return for agricultural and dairy products or bus tickets. It can helpful for poor people.

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Critical Thinking

The UNLV recycling program should involve more participants who can provide different activities and educate others about the purpose of recycling. Participants may distribute these ideas among their families and communities. For example, they can initiate to recycle rainwater for gardening or offer old cell phones for economically disadvantaged people. Moreover, such programs teach people how to use broken, useless appliances that are usually thrown into garbage. It can be a good idea to give them to repair shops or trade schools. Thus, recycling should become a way of life in every family and community, where people can blend it into a daily lifestyle, making it a habit. Individuals can recycle things on their way to work or school.

Like any other project, the UNLV recycling program requires improvement. The students should receive more information on what materials are collected, services provided and the location of recycling bins. For those who generate large volumes of wastage, the campus should offer assistance in the form of special pick-ups. The program will benefit if collectors will receive bags with some products in return for recyclable materials.

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Unfortunately, the recycling program is not very popular among students who consider it inefficient. To improve this situation, faculties have to increase the number of students who are working on their undergraduate thesis requirement in the field of environmental studies. Raising the public concern on recycling programs can improve the program and involve more volunteers.

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Conclusion

Environmental studies have become an important discipline in educational facilities, and require a greater concern of students to learn about it. Volunteer service-learning projects help understand the environmental issues and obtain effective learning experience. The UNLV recycling program is the program that involves students in volunteer work to make the environment cleaner and safer. It gives directions to the participants on how to operate and behave in the modern polluted environment, trying to make it cleaner. The knowledge received in the classroom needs practical experience. Students should be well aware of their duties, possible outcomes, and future expectations. The perfect involvement of all the parties may give perfect opportunities to make recycling a way of life or everyone’s habit.

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