How to Compost on Campus

All food waste and to-go servingware in campus dining facilities is 100% compostable. When organic waste is disposed of in the designated green compost bins, it is collected by the student-led Compost Crew or the Compost Operations Assistant and taken to the compost bays near the Campus Garden, where it is shredded, mixed with other organic matter, like leaves collected by W&L's grounds crew, turned regularly until it breaks down into a rich soil amendment that is then used on the campus garden.

By composting organic waste we are reducing the greenhouse gases that are produced by the anaerobic decomposition that would otherwise happen in the landfill, and we are creating a great product that improves our soil and increases the productivity of our campus garden.

In Dining Venues

All food waste and to-go servingware in campus dining facilities is 100% compostable. When you are eating in a campus dining venue, simply dispose of any leftover food and disposable serving items (utensils, napkins, plates, straws - the works!) in the waste bins labeled COMPOST.

At Campus Events

All events catered by W&L will include a GREEN compost bin as part of the default set-up. These bins are stamped with the word "compost." At outdoor campus-wide events look for the GREEN bins arranged under the flag that says COMPOST. 

Organizing an event using an outside vendor for your catering? If you want to provide composting as an option, you must:

1. Ensure that disposable items (plates napkins etc.) are compostable. You can purchase compostable servingware through W&LCatering if your vendor cannot provide it.

2. See How to Plan a Sustainable Event to make sure your menu is compost-friendly.

3. Request a compost bin on your event set-up Work Order with University Facilities. If you only request a trash bin, all waste from the event will be collected as trash and go to the landfill rather than the campus compost. 

In Campus Housing

Gaines, Graham-Lees, and the Woods Creek Apartments:

These residence halls each have a green bin labeled for compost available in the same location outside the buildings where student personal trash and recycling is collected. Remember ONLY materials specifically labeled as compostable - like W&L Dining to-go ware - and organic matter including food waste, plants and flowers, can go in these bins. Materials should be emptied directly into the bin - no bags!

Sorority Houses on Frank Parsons Way:

These houses each have a compost disposal bin in the dining area and a designated student volunteer who brings the compost out to the compost tilt-truck near the trash dumpster. These bins are lined with compostable bags that can be placed directly in the tilt-truck

Compost is collected from these locations once daily.

Compost collection may be added at other campus housing locations on request. Contact for more information.

Across Campus

Currently, compost collection bins are located only in dining venues, at catered events and in the Science Center Atrium. Stay tuned for additional locations coming soon!

In the Community

If you would like to compost at home but have space limitations or other constraints, Rockbridge Conservation's Composting Program might be a good option. Visit their website for more information: