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Sustainability at Carthage

Recycling FAQs

Where can I recycle?

All residence halls and academic buildings on campus have single-stream recycling stations on every floor. These recycling stations are located in the lounges in residence halls, and in high-traffic areas in campus buildings. These recycling stations accept plastic, glass, cans and paper/newspaper. They are emptied on a regular schedule. Learn more about what you can recycle.

Do I need to sort my recyclables?

No. Single-stream recycling is easy to do, and no sorting is needed. Single-stream recycling means all recyclables are combined in one recycling dumpster before leaving campus. Waste Management empties these dumpsters daily, taking Carthage’s recyclables to an off-campus facility, where they are sorted more thoroughly.

I see Environmental Services collect and transport recyclables that are in green bags and then put clear bags of trash together in the same transport cart. Does this mean they are throwing it away?

No. Environmental Services staff collect green recyclable bagged items and clear bagged items together in the same transport cart. Recyclables are put into yellow lid containers and trash is put into trash bins or compactors.

Can I recycle batteries?

Yes. There is a five-gallon pail in each residence hall for small batteries, like those used in cell phones, cameras, flashlights, etc. These pails are collected and taken to Maintenance, where Batteries Plus picks them up. Hedberg Library also collects batteries for recycling.

Please note: Car batteries should not be placed in these buckets. Car batteries should be taken to the Maintenance Department for recycling.

Can I recycle ink cartridges and light bulbs?

Yes. Hedberg Library collects ink cartridges for recycling. Light bulbs are recycled through the Maintenance Department.

What about old refrigerators and computers?

The Carthage Maintenance Department recycles refrigerant from small refrigerators in residence hall rooms. Students who have a broken refrigerator should contact the Maintenance Department.

Carthage recycles old computers, monitors and keyboards. These items can be taken to Lentz Hall garage, by the mail room, or Hedberg Library loading dock. Or contact the Maintenance Department.

Are these items recyclable in my curbside mixed recycling program?


  • Plastic bottle caps/lids: Yes. After the bottles are empty, plastic caps should be placed back on bottles.
  • Plastic bags: No. Do not put loose plastic bags or bagged recyclables into cart.
  • Plastic film: No
  • Clamshell Packaging: No
  • Plastic eatery including utensils, plates, and cups: No
  • Chip bags, nutritional bar, or candy wrappers: No


  • Cartons: Varies by jurisdiction. Juice boxes (no pouches), milk and juice cartons (emptied and rinsed, no pouches or straws) are recyclable in some areas.
  • Pizza boxes (without food or paper liners/doilies): Yes
  • Single serve hot beverage cups: No
  • Napkins, paper towers, tissues: No
  • Shredded paper: No
  • Paper cups and plates: No


  • Glass bottles and jars: Varies by jurisdiction

Aerosol Can

  • Aerosol cans: Varies by jurisdiction
  • Quick Facts

    • Carthage is named a Best Midwestern College by The Princeton Review (2021), a designation given to only 25 percent of four-year schools.

    • The Tower, Carthage’s newest residence hall, provides some of the best views on campus — if not in the Midwest! In addition to #carthageviews of the lake from seven stories up, residents enjoy suite-style living and two floors of shared campus spaces for gaming, cooking, group meetings, or quiet studying. Learn more about all housing options.

    • You’re going to need brain fuel. Grab a morning coffee and a snack and Starbucks or Einstein Bros. Bagels. Later, meet friends at “The Caf,” where the specials change daily but the staples are constant, or swing through “The Stu” for wings, a burrito, or a sub. A new option, Carthage Cash, even covers some off-campus meals.

    • More than 90% of Carthage alumni report that they have secured a job or are continuing their studies six months after graduation. Visit The Aspire Center.

    • 91% of employers say critical thinking, communication, and problem-solving skills matter more than your major when it comes to career success. Learn more about how the liberal arts prepare you for a successful career.

    • Lots of schools wear the four-year label. Carthage stands behind it. More than 90% of Carthage graduates earn their degrees in four years. Learn more

    • Oscars. Emmys. Tonys. Golden Globes. The playwrights we’ve brought in have them. Each year, the Carthage Theatre Department commissions an original script by a renowned playwright for its New Play Initiative. Carthage students then work with the writer to stage it. 

    • Carthage has ranked as a top Fulbright producer for four of the past five years. Read about Carthage Fulbright winners.

    • Things look new at Carthage because they are. Our science center, student union, athletic and recreation center, and numerous residence halls have all been constructed or newly renovated in the last 15 years.

    • Carthage offers majors, minors, and concentrations in more than 50 areas of study, from marketing to neuroscience, nursing to music theatre.

    • Our Summer Undergraduate Research Experience offers select students a research budget, one-on-one mentoring with a professor, and 10 weeks of analyzing, deciphering — and getting paid.

    • So the lake is kind of a focal point, but there’s a lot more to love about our campus — like the fact that our more than 80-acre campus is also an arboretum and wildlife sanctuary. Focused on keeping campus lush forever, we plant between 50 and 75 new trees every year from a variety of species.

    • Carthage was founded in 1847. That’s more than 170 years of leaders, makers, and go-getters going out and going forth. Read more about Carthage’s rich history.

    • More than 90 percent of students receive financial aid. Carthage awards more than $20 million in scholarship and grant assistance. That includes $5.5 million in competitive scholarships in business, mathematics, science, languages, the fine arts, leadership, and overall academic strength. Learn what’s available.

    • Abraham Lincoln was an early Trustee of the College, and U.S. Secretary of State John Hay was a Carthage alum. The two still have a proud place on our campus. Spend some time with them in our Sesquicentennial Plaza. On warm days you’ll find professors leading their classes here.

    • Come to Carthage; hear yourself think — think … think …
      Legend has it that Sesquicentennial Plaza holds a perfect echo. Just stand with both your feet on the “1847,” face Straz, and start talking. “You’re the only one who can hear you, but you’ll be crystal clear,” promises English and theatre alumna Mikaley Osley.

    • Our Great Lake provides Carthage students with some amazing views. Think classes on the beach, lake views from the lab, and sunrises from your dorm room. “I love waking up in the morning with the sun shining off the lake. Nothing compares to the view in the morning,” recalls biology and neuroscience major Ann O’Leary.

    • Carthage awards up to 35 Presidential Scholarships each year, which range from $25,000 up to full tuition. Learn more.

    • For a full decade, NASA has selected Carthage students to conduct research aboard its zero-gravity aircraft. Lately, the stakes have risen. A team of underclassmen is grinding to prepare a tiny but powerful Earth-imaging satellite for launch to the International Space Station. Learn more about the space sciences at Carthage

    • Carthage is the only college or university in the Midwest where every freshman takes a full-year sequence of foundational texts of the Western intellectual tradition. Learn about Intellectual Foundations.

    • With a student-faculty ratio of 13:1, your professors will know who you are. They will also know who you want to be — and how to get you there. Meet our faculty.

    • There are more than 130 student organizations on campus, from Amnesty International to Fencing to Frisbee, Chem Club to Stand Up Comedy. See how easy it is to get involved.

    • True story: There are more than 27 art galleries, a dozen museums, and nine theatres within 25 miles of Carthage. Some highlights: The nationally recognized Racine Art Museum, the world-renowned Art Institute of Chicago, and the Milwaukee Art Museum. Learn more about our location.

    • What’s better than one professor? Two professors. What’s better than two professors? Two professors from totally different fields teaching a single class. There’s debate. Discussion. Differing perspectives. This is where the magic happens. That’s why every student takes a Carthage Symposium.

    • You can’t hide here — not with only 17 other students in the classroom with you. That’s going to be rough some mornings. But later, when you’re able to argue your point of view thoughtfully, express your opinions succinctly, and meet challenges head-on, without fear … Yep, you’ll thank us.

    • Carthage is ranked in the Top 5 in the country for student participation in short-term study abroad. Every J-Term, hundreds of students travel all over the world on faculty-led study tours. Imagine a month in Sweden, Rome, Cuba, Senegal, India, Japan …