Got old computers? Revamped recycling process reaps rewards

by Randy Hollowell, information technology services

A group of employees representing numerous areas across campus answered the big question: What do we do with outdated and unwanted university technology equipment and materials?

Representatives from IT services and members of the Academic Directors of Technology (ADOT) group used the LEAN methodology to establish the most efficient and cost-effective way to handle old equipment.

computerThe results of the project include not only an easy-to-use system for recycling university-owned equipment but also will generate new funds to support student-focused technology initiatives.

The biggest change is that departments across campus can now schedule their own pickups directly with the new recycling vendor, Global Environmental Services (GES), and no longer go through the IT services support desk. This process change is expected to save approximately $14,000 per year in reduced resource time.

According to Brian Henebry, associate director for enterprise operations and the project manager, “For most of the university if they already use GES, it is business as usual. For others, it is a much simpler method...”

With the new process and by using GES instead of the previous vendor, Miami will see a significant increase in revenue from the recycling. For FY14, Miami recouped about $18,000 through technology recycling efforts. Through the midpoint of FY15, that number jumped to approximately $32,000. The money that is recovered, minus overhead costs, from this new process will be put back into the student tech fee.

Nearly all electronics or raw materials can be recycled through this process. However, there will be a charge to recycle CRT monitors, and fluorescent tubes cannot be recycled at all due to the mercury component.

To recycle hazardous materials, please contact Yvette Kline, director of sustainability and energy conservation in physical facilities.

If departments want to accumulate a large number of computers before calling for pickup, they should contact either Campus Partnerships or their division’s ADOT or TSR to access a secure storage location.

Individuals can submit a request by:

  1. Going to and search for “Request Computer Recycling.”
  2. Clicking the Request Computer Recycling link.
  3. Clicking the Request Recycling green button.
  4. Completing the form with the necessary information.
  5. Clicking the Request button.