Aron Nisbel, an exchange student from Umeå University in Sweden, is among the first students to receive a collection of useful items donated by last year’s residents.

Giving apartment essentials a new lease on life

September 6, 2018 | Campus Life

A new pilot program is reducing waste, breaking the chain of consumption and lending exchange students a helping hand. The collaboration between the university’s Office of Sustainability, MacEwan Residence and MacEwan International is an offshoot of the Suite Score program, which collected more than 1,000 kilograms of items from students moving out of the eight-story residence building last spring.

Some of those donations are now finding new homes with students who have arrived at MacEwan from countries all over the world.

“Exchange students are only on campus for a short period of time – one or two terms – so buying the essentials for an apartment just to turn around and dispose of them a few months later isn’t just a financial burden, it also creates a lot of waste,” says Tyler Cantwell with MacEwan International.

So Tyler teamed up with the Office of Sustainability and MacEwan Residence to collect items gathered during Suite Score, organize and pack the items into bins, and distribute the kits to exchange students moving into Residence this fall. The kits will be collected them again at the end of the semester.

This year’s bins may be a bit on the minimalist side, says Tyler, but as awareness builds and donations increase, organizers hope to have fully-stocked bins waiting in every future exchange student’s room before they arrive on campus. 

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