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12 Sustainability Tips From College Students That Make Planet-Friendly Living a Breeze

These sustainability tips make being planet-friendly on campus a breeze, from saving leftovers at the dining hall to eco laundry options.

sustainability tips for college students
Written by
Briana Dodson
Summer break is a great time to
develop sustainable new habits
, from
learning how to compost
to cutting down on plastic. Now that it's time to head back to campus, you're probably wondering how to continue
living sustainably in a small dorm or apartment
. Well, the Brightly community has your back—and it's easier than you think!
We asked
our community of changemakers
to share their favorite tips for being more planet-friendly as a student—things that make their lives easier, and the planet better. Here are some sustainability tips that will help you
continue your eco-journey into fall
, all while inspiring others to do the same in the process.

12 Sustainability Tips for College Students

1. Bring Reusable Containers to Dining Halls

sustainability tips for college students
"I'll be bringing my own takeout containers for leftovers at meals." —Rose
"I got Stasher bags to bring to my dining hall to save leftovers from going into the trash." —Gwyneth

2. Bring Your Reusables Around Campus

"I just graduated from college, and my favorite tips were to
carry my own silverware
and coffee mug! This kept me from creating unnecessary waste." —Eden

3. Utilize Old School Supplies

sustainability tips for college students
"I always used to go through my previous notebooks and rip out the old pages and use what was left to save paper." —Bella
"I make sure I use disposable pens and markers until they're completely dead, or get refills for them if I really like them." —Madisen

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4. Compost Your Food Scraps

created a compost bin
at school and I put a scrap bucket next to the bins in the common room. I would go out to the bark pile or collect dead leaves around school and
use them as my brown layer
." —Bella

5. Pack Your Lunch

sustainability tips for college students
"Always pack lunch so you don't have to buy anything that may not be in plastic-free packaging." —Bella

6. Turn Off the Lights

"Be that person that goes around and turns the lights off!" —Bella

7. Repurpose Old Containers

"Instead of buying pen cups/makeup brush organizers, I repurposed and cleaned out old candle jars to use instead." —Gwyneth

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8. Make Your Laundry Routine More Eco

using soap nuts
for my laundry! They can be reused up to 10 times before adding more to the bag. You can compost them as well." —Caia
"I'm using wool balls instead of dryer sheets." —Gwyneth

9. Go Digital with Note-Taking

using a Rocketbook
and typing in docs instead of buying and using new paper notebooks." —Caia

10. Bike Instead of Drive

sustainability tips for college students
"I bike everywhere instead of driving. It's healthier for me and the environment." —Aurora

11. Invest in a Reusable Water Bottle

"As a marching band student, I invested in a good
reusable water bottle
instead of using the cups they offer." —Aurora

12. Get Involved in Programs on Campus

"Research if your college has any food waste programs and find out if you can participate. Some schools and dorms will have student garden programs where you could
participate and grow your own food
." —Maria