This fall CAS took a step in the right direction by instituting the use of reusable and high quality utensils and dishes in Mary Jemison Dining Hall. However, they mistakenly removed the accessible garbage cans from the top floor. No longer can students do away with their refuse from lunch while remaining on the top floor; CAS demands and expects all students, regardless of their garbage load, to walk that refuse downstairs, whether it's a finished plate of pasta, or a lowly taco wrapper. What has evolved from this oversight is no longer simply an issue of convenience for students, but of cleanliness.
There are some solutions for students in the interim while CAS withhold's their garbage receptacles. There are garbage cans in the bathrooms. There are garbage cans a stone's throw, or wrapper's throw, away in the food preparation areas, and the garbage bins in the front walkway of Mary Jemison are also a viable option. However, there is still the trying question of what to do with the utensils and plates that CAS has generously allowed students to use. We live in a civilized country, and leaving a plate in the bathroom sink is something we can all agree is unacceptable. Therefore, CAS must make this change.
It's understandable that CAS removed their old trash bins. There was no place to put dishes and utensils, aside from the garbage heap itself. However, CAS should take a cue from such sandwich eateries as Panera bread, or even our own local Michelli's Deli, and retrofit some receptacles into covered garbage bins so that used dishes and utensils can rest on top. Everything would go in the same place, the process would be quite smooth. This would allow for students on-the-go to leave their leftover dishes on the first floor, where much eating takes place already. CAS would only have to monitor one or two spots to maintain a sense of convenience and cleanliness to their dining hall.
CAS should take notice of this oversight, and rectify this situation at the beginning of the forthcoming Spring semester. The circulation of real plates and utensils was a good step, but CAS should not forget the garbage-receptacle needs of the student population. Remember, before there were ceramic plates and polished steel forks, we had styrophome containers, plastic sporks, and best of all, trashcans on the top floor of Mary Jemison.