This is not your everyday yard sale; it’s an annual rite of passage, for spring cleaning across student housing for Coastal Carolina University, with good buys before goodbyes.
The school’s 2017 “Campus Salvage” sale – cash only – for its sustainability scholarship fund and benefiting local charities, is 8 a.m. May 13 at 370 Allied Drive, Conway, in the Portable On Demand Storage company parking lot, in Atlantic Center, across U.S. 501 from CCU. Admission is free, or pay $5 for early bird entry at 7 a.m.
Jeremy Monday, CCU’s sustainability coordinator, covered the essentials of this grand sale at the close of each school year when students move out, especially its role to prevent the throwing away of used wares still in good shape. More details at 843-349-6954, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Q: “Campus Salvage” won the 2009 Recycling Event of the Year award from the S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control. How many years has this tradition of spring cleaning for good causes been going?
A: This program started in 2008 and was the idea of a student at CCU who had a passion for sustainability and waste reduction. During her senior year in 2008, she helped gather items at two residence halls using the common areas. The response was overwhelming. In its second year, Campus Salvage involved the help of students in the business department, who were able to help in the planning and execution of the collection. The students created a partnership with PODS to assist in the collection efforts.
Q: A few years ago, a few PODS units would be placed for students to donate items. How many collection points cover the campus nowadays?
A: This year, we requested 29 PODS to place on campus, with 24 of them placed in seven strategic locations within university housing. The other five PODS are used for clothing, bedding, towels, cleaning supplies, hygiene products, paper products and school supplies, which are all sorted and donated to local charities.
Q: What everyday wares remain the most important and/or popular among students to have all school year long, but not want to pack to bring home?
A: The mini-fridge, microwave and plastic storage unit are always among the most popular items to donate. The fridge is a must have in the residence hall but doesn’t always fit in the compact car when it’s time to leave. We also see a lot of floor lamps, mirrors and rugs.
Q: In size, items donated for the sale range from how small – maybe office supplies? – to how big, in pieces of furniture and appliances?
A: In the past, we have seen large items such as full-sized couches, bedroom suits, and foosball tables. On the small side, we see everything from pens and pencils to spoons and forks.
Q: What are some more unusual, possibly antique things that turn up at these sale? Adding machines? Vinyl albums? A thesaurus in book form? Crutches? Certainly no sets of Encyclopedia Britannicas or World Books ...
A: In the past, we have had some interesting items donated. We once had a fish donated that was still in the tank, and that fish still lives with one of our student employees. We have seen crutches, an adult onesie, a peanut-butter-and-jelly-costume, and some really fancy high-dollar end tables that sold for $20. With most items being $1 at the sale, you are bound to find something really cool for a buck.
Q: With almost $5,000 raised for the scholarship fund last year, and the still-good-but-unsold things such as clothes and bedding relayed to 16 local charities, how does this annual sale make your head spin with the volume of goods donated and moved and the number of browsers who turn out?
A: We have 4,500 students who will move out every May, and this program has certainly become our busiest at Sustain Coastal. The program was put in place to do these things, which are still what drives us daily: the ultimate goal of diverting items from the local landfill, providing local organizations in need with items on their donation wish lists, providing tangible resources to the community, and raising awareness about re-use and living a more sustainable lifestyle. The sale has become wildly popular in the community, and we are certainly appreciative of the support.
Contact Steve Palisin at 843-444-1764.