Campus ID News
Card, mobile credential, payment and security
slider reuse container 1

William & Mary issues reusable dining containers

Andrew Hudson   ||   Dec 04, 2014  ||   

William & Mary’s dining services is launching a new program on campus called “Choose to Reuse,” and the initiative is providing students with reusable carry out containers in the hopes of cutting campus waste.

The program provides reusable containers to students eating in the dining halls and is expected to cut back on the number of disposable containers being used on campus. According to a release on university’s official website, William & Mary students use and throw away 4,000 disposable to-go containers each week.

To participate, a student simply checks out a reusable container from the dining hall cashier, takes their food with them and then returns the dirty container to the dining hall in exchange for a clean one.

The system keeps track of checkouts and returns using student ID cards and numbers. A student can only receive a container once they have swiped in for that meal. The cashier will then swipe the ID card again to record in the system that the student has a container checked out. Finally, the cashier will swipe the student’s card once the container has been returned.

"We consulted with CBORD to create the buttons in our system that allows the check status, check out and check in containers," says Catherine Donatone, marketing manager for William & Mary Dining Services. "This system allows us to track usage and return rates. With that information we can track our numbers of people who choose the reusable containers versus the single-use and determine our impact."

The Choose to Reuse containers are free for students to use, but in the event a student loses a container or fails to return it by the end of the semester, the student will be charged $5. Students can have more than one container checked out, but a $5 fee will be assessed for each additional container beyond the first.

According to Donatone, getting the program up and running required a few considerations to be addressed. "W&M Dining Services first procured the reusable containers, created the marketing and outreach plan to create buzz around the program," she says. "W&M then drew up a Waiver agreement that students were required to sign in order to use the containers, before ultimately staffing the cashiers, dishwashers and other personnel required to market, distribute and wash the containers."

The program has been running smoothly thus far with only minor growing pains.

"We required all students checking out a container for the first time to sign a waiver. This, combined with the added swipes to check out a container, proved to add a small amount of time to the average wait in line during peak meal periods," explains Donatone. "This has actually been relatively minimal, however, and students are excited for the opportunity to have a reliable and easy reusable to-go container system."

The official launch date of the Choose to Reuse program is January 21, 2015, but the university is planning a trial run open to all students until December 17.

Subscribe to our weekly newsletter


May 26, 23 / ,

Penn State adds mobile ordering to campus app

Penn State has added a mobile ordering feature to its comprehensive campus mobile app, Penn State Go. The Penn State Eats Mobile function is available for use by students on the flagship University Park campus, as well as across the university's Commonwealth Campuses.
May 26, 23 / ,

NAU leverages delivery robots to support late-night dining

Northern Arizona is leveraging Starship delivery robots and the mobile ordering app in a clever way to prop up late night dining, and putting a twist on the ghost kitchen concept. The university has launched its Hole in the Wall dining window that now serves either pickup or robot delivery for students by offering a number of dining concepts all from a single, concession-style window.
May 25, 23 / ,

HID's Technology Partner Program helps companies develop mobile solutions

Trusted identity solutions provider, HID Global, has announced its HID Origo Technology Partner Program, the company’s first program dedicated to partners with a focus on mobile technologies. The Origo Technology Partner Program is designed to help technology partners by providing the ideal platform for organizations to design, test, and market products that integrate with HID Origo via APIs and SDKs.
CIDN logo reversed
The only publication dedicated to the use of campus cards, mobile credentials, identity and security technology in the education market. CampusIDNews – formerly CR80News – has served more than 6,500 subscribers for more than two decades.

Join us, @NACCUorg, and @TouchNet to explore how campus card programs can successfully navigate the sales and procurement process. Join the webinar on June 6, 2 pm EDT.

Webinar: Learn how the University of Arizona uses campus cards, mobile ordering, kiosks, lockers, and robots to revolutionize campus dining. April 7, 2-2:30 EDT. Register Now at

Load More...
CampusIDNews is published by AVISIAN Publishing
315 E. Georgia St.
Tallahassee, FL 32301[email protected]
Use our contact form to submit tips, corrections, or questions to our team.
©2023 CampusIDNews. All rights reserved.