Sustainability in Housekeeping

Green cleaning and waste handling put our housekeepers on the front lines of these sustainability efforts.

Housekeeping - Sustainable Approach

Ursinus College contracts out housekeeping to an independent contractor. The housekeeping staff is comprised of approximately 25 employees. These employees are responsible for cleaning the public spaces in all campus buildings, as well as staff/faculty offices.  We use almost exclusively sustainable cleaning products, chemicals, etc.  We require that our housekeeping contractor provide recycled toilet paper and paper towels. 

Waste Handling

Our housekeeping staff members are on the front lines of our recycling efforts. They collect and distribute both trash and recycling for the academic and non-academic buildings on campus. They are educated about what can and cannot be recycled and recycling contamination issues.  They load recycling and garbage bags onto their trucks, and then distribute them behind the scenes, on the back of campus, to different dumpsters and determining whether there is contamination in the recycling bags.  Contaminated recycling must be put in with the trash.

We have a color-coded system for our waste bags, based on type of waste:

  • Trash: clear bag
  • Recycling: blue bag
  • Compost: green bag

Our housekeeping staff members have been trained in how to identify recycling that is contaminated as well as the importance of recycling for our campus overall. Contamination is a concern in certain areas of the campus, particularly where we have many student parties.