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Gettysburg College began recycling in 1998. In the subsequent years, we have continually improved our recycling efforts by adding to the list of recyclable materials, by developing innovative re-use programs, by partnering with local organizations, and by educating the campus community of faculty, staff, and students. Our recycling programming has earned statewide Waste Watchers awards for Outstanding Achievement in Reuse and for Outstanding Achievement in Special Collections.

Single Stream Recycling

In 2009, Gettysburg College began single-stream recycling. In single-stream recycling, all recyclable materials enter a facility mixed together and are sorted mechanically before being processed.  This makes it easier for members of the campus community to recycle and has allowed us to recycle a wider range of materials. Any excess in recyclable materials placed beside the recycling bins must be in clear plastic bags to be picked up. 5% of the materials placed in recycling bins can be non-recyclable materials - so stained or unwashed items are okay to recycle.

Single Stream recycling at Gettysburg College includes:

  • Newspapers (including all inserts)
  • Magazines and catalogs
  • Junk mail
  • Cardboard and paperboard boxes (including cereal boxes without liners and pizza boxes);
  • Corrugate boxes
  • Computer printouts
  • Books (including paperbacks, textbooks, and hardbacks)
  • Aerosol Cans
  • Office paper (including typing, fax, copy, letterhead, NCR) and envelopes
  • Brown paper bags (kraft)
  • Glass containers such as jars and bottles
  • Ferrous and bimetal food and beverage containers
  • Non-metallic wrapping paper
  • Aluminum food and beverage containers
  • Aluminum foil and aluminum pie pans
  • Narrow-neck plastic containers (other than for motor oil) carry plastic resin identification codes #1 through 7.
  • Wide-mouth containers such as peanut butter, margarine/butter tubs, yogurt, cottage cheese, sour cream, mayonnaise, whipped topping, and prescription bottles (please note that the lids and caps do not need to be removed)
  • Rigid plastics which include plastic milk/soda crates, plastic buckets with metal handles, plastic laundry baskets, plastic lawn furniture, plastic totes, plastic drums, plastic coolers, plastic flower pots, plastic drinking cups/glasses, plastic 5-gallon water bottles, plastic pallets, and empty plastic garbage/recycling bins
  • Bagged plastic film (for example: grocery bags contained within 1-bag, or stretch-film and/or shrink wrap contained within 1-bag)
  • Aseptic/gable-top milk and juice cartons

Other Recycling

Gettysburg College also recycles the following special items, separate from single-stream collection:

  • Batteries: place in the collection box next to the mail room in the CUB
  • Printer Cartridges: envelopes located at the mail room in the CUB
  • Bubble wrap and packing peanuts: return to the mail room in the CUB
  • Plastic Bags: Bin located in the CUB
  • Fluorescent Light Bulbs: Tube-style and Compact Fluorescents (CFLs) can be brought to Central Energy Plant for recycling
  • Car Batteries and Oil from Campus Vehicles: Central Energy Plant
  • Personal vehicle parts & oil: AutoZone
  • Computer Hardware: Information Technology in the West Building
  • Toner Cartridges: Information Technology, Academic Departments
  • Scrap Metal: West Building Lot

Special Programs

A recycling student intern processes items for the Give It Up for Good SaleThe Gettysburg United Give it up for Good Sale, which collects furniture, clothing, house-wares, electronics, sporting equipment, and non-perishable food from student move-out, is held each May.  Supplemented by college furniture and appliances slated for replacement, the sale has raised $15,000 to $17,000 annually for the United Way of Adams County and prevents over 30 tons of material from entering the waste stream each year. In 2013, the sale received 27 tons of donations and raised over $20,500 for the United Way.

Also partnering with the United Way, Gettysburg College supports an In-kind Donation Program that places used furniture in local small businesses and in the homes of low-income families.


Learn more about recycling and sustainability efforts at Gettysburg College and elsewhere:

Sustainability at Gettysburg College

Painted Turtle Farm (Gettysburg College student garden)

Gettysburg Environmental Concerns Organization (G.E.C.O.)

Gettysburg Farmhouse (Sustainability and food justice theme house)

EPA Student Center

Earth Share

Questions or concerns?

Please call Facilities Services at 717-337-6730, or email