New students encouraged to move in sustainably

New residential students will be joining a campus with a strong commitment to sustainability, and SF State is encouraging them to make their move-in as "green" as possible.

A photo of The Towers residence hall at SF State.

A key way of doing so, says Sustainability Programs Manager Caitlin Steele, is being aware of what items are essential for college life and what is better left at home.

"Students should be aware that space in the residence halls is limited and they will be living in a community setting, so they should be careful not to bring more than they need," Steele said.

Prior to moving in, Steele recommends students:

  • Contact roommates to avoid bringing duplicate communal items
  • Pack with reusable containers, rather than cardboard boxes
  • Bring items that can be reused throughout the year, such as refillable water bottles, travel coffee mugs and cloth shopping bags

One item students should consider bringing? A bicycle. SF State's Bike Barn offers students a free place to park their bikes, and the bike path located behind Thornton and Hensill halls connects students to the Stonestown mall and San Francisco's extensive bicycling network. Students can also get around the city and the Bay Area using public transportation. Multiple lines of San Francisco's Muni system stop next to campus, and the University offers a free shuttle to the Daly City Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART) station.

Students should also familiarize themselves with the campus' "three-bin" waste system, which separates recyclables and compostables from trash and has allowed SF State to divert 75 percent of its waste away from landfills. The University hopes to reduce its waste to zero by 2020. To emphasize that goal, the campus will hold a "Zero Waste Lunch" on Aug. 23 during Welcome Days. All food and containers used during the lunch will be either recyclable or compostable, and staff members will be on hand to help students learn the three-bin system.

For sustainable move-in tips, visit To learn more about sustainable living at SF State, including recycling and composting, visit the Sustainable SF State website.

-- Jonathan Morales