Original Date: 06/05/2006
Revision Date: / /
Best Practice : Reuse and Recycle of Office Electronics
Rockwell Collins recycles old and outdated office computers and related electronics to area students through the Rockwell Educational Access to Computer Technology Center. The program has reduced disposal costs by recycling more than 20,000 spent cathode ray tubes and liquid crystal displays, which has benefited area schools and nonprofits for further education.
The general practice of disposing old and outdated computers is to place them in holding areas throughout the facility until sufficient quantities are accumulated to warrant their disposal. During this time, the material occupies valuable floor space, usually remains on inventory, and occasionally becomes intermingled with new materials while the cost of hauling and disposing continues to rise.
Rockwell Collins employees developed and implemented the Rockwell Educational Access to Computer Technology (REACT) Center in 1999 to put technology in the hands of students. The program is a partnership among Rockwell Collins, the Cedar Rapids Chamber of Commerce, the Greater Cedar Rapids Community Foundation, and area businesses. The REACT Center serves as a receiving and refurbishing center for used computers from Rockwell Collins and other businesses with a goal to provide a student-to-computer ratio of 4 to 1. The program hosts 250 schools and nonprofits annually throughout Iowa. Hands-on training is provided to students and teachers who build computers for their own classrooms at the REACT Center. Greater awareness is promoted in students and teachers regarding the use of real-world technology. The Center operates on the efforts of volunteers that include 75 Rockwell Collins employees, retirees, and community volunteers who donate approximately 10,000 volunteer hours annually.
The REACT Program reduced the cost of recycling spent cathode ray tubes and liquid crystal displays, improved cradle-to-grave control, and reduced confusion during quality assurance audits at Rockwell Collins. The real benefit has been the 20,000 computers that have been donated to schools and nonprofits for further educations. Schools not only receive computers, but teachers and students are educated in the internal workings of computers. Rockwell Collins, area businesses and their employees, and retirees have enhanced the community in which they live and work.
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