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Ink & Toner Cartridge Recycling

Why should I recycle my used ink/toner cartridges and cell phones?

Cell phones and ink and toner cartridges for your printer, fax, or copier contain chemicals that could be hazardous to the environment if landfilled and left to leak into the soil and groundwater. Additionally, the materials used for the casings (plastic, metals) do not readily biodegrade. Thus, it is preferable to recycle these materials to keep them out of landfills.

How can I recycle these materials?

Procurement, University Staff Advisory Council, Medical Center Staff Advisory Council, HR Express/Commodore Concierge, Guy Brown, and the VU Sustainability and Environmental Management Office (SEMO) are pleased to offer recycling for copier, fax, laser and ink jet toner cartridges, as well as old cell phones, iPods and mp3 players at Vanderbilt University. Drop-off locations have been established at the following locations (a map can be seen here):

  • Commons Center, Kissam Center, and Sarratt Student Center main desks;
  • Kennedy Center (ride the elevator to the bottom floor);
  • Peabody Library;
  • Medical Research Building III (MRBIII) – 3rd floor lobby
  • Baker Building Lobby; and
  • Commodore Concierge locations in VUMC (Medical Center North main lobby, Vanderbilt Children’s Hospital second floor off sky-bridge from the South Garage)

Guy Brown will donate equal portions of the proceeds from recycling these items to Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt, the Susan Gray School, and the Work/Life Connections Faculty and Staff Hardship Fund. Simply take your copier, fax, laser, and ink jet toner cartridges or bottles and your old cell phones and PDAs, regardless of brand or where they were purchased, to the recycling location nearest you! Vanderbilt-issued smart phones and PDAs should be wiped of all information prior to recycling.

You can also call Guy Brown at 615.777.1500 or email Guy Brown Customer Care to get boxes for laser and ink jet toner cartridges with pre-paid, pre-addressed labels delivered to you free of charge. Additionally, you can download a pre-paid shipping label here.  The labels are coded to say that they came from VU so they know to give the proceeds to the Monroe Carell Jr. Vanderbilt Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt, the Susan Gray School and the Work/Life Connections Faculty and Staff Hardship Fund. There are several options to send these boxes back:

  • Your Guy Brown driver can take the box back with him/her when they are on their regular delivery route to you. There is no charge for this.
  • When your UPS driver comes with a delivery, send the box back with the driver. There is no charge if they are already at your site.
  • Call UPS (1-800-PICK-UPS). The shipping is free with your pre-paid label, but they will charge you a surcharge for coming out to get the package.
  • Most campus side areas that have recycling services can also write “recycle” on the box of the spent cartridge, cell phone, or PDA and leave it stacked neatly next to your recycle bin for collection. Call E-ARTH (3-2784) to find out if you are eligible for this service.

The Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital is recognized as a leading teaching and research hospital, providing care to over 235,000 pediatric visitors in fiscal year 2009.

The Susan Gray School is an on-campus preschool that includes typically developing children in an educational setting alongside children with special needs and is a research center for Peabody College.

The Faculty and Staff Hardship Fund was established in 1994 to financially assist Vanderbilt faculty and staff who are experiencing a temporary hardship due to a significant life event. An award is intended to be a major step for the employee in the return to financial stability.