The Office of Sustainability launched the Reusable Cup Rewards project on Friday, Sept. 21, handing out 200 stickers outside the Pub and Starbucks in an effort to fight against single-use plastics.
“I believe that many students on campus have a reusable cup, but often forget it when they want to visit Starbucks,” senior Office of Sustainability Intern and Fill It Forward project leader Jenny Koester said in an email.
Using Fill It Forward, an app created by Green Menu Inc, students will be able to track their drink purchases. Each drink is worth 20 points, and students can choose prizes after accumulating 300 or 500 points.
To use the app, students must receive a sticker with a barcode, put it on their favorite reusable cup, and create a Fill It Forward account. After ordering a drink at Starbucks or Triton’s Pub, the student can scan the barcode on their cup.
“We want the most devoted students to partake in this project. We don’t just want it to be another decoration sticker on someone’s water bottle,” Koester said.
Koester took over this project from senior Lilah Schaeffer, who is studying in Washington D.C. this semester and so is unable to personally continue the project.
“I kept noticing that the recycling bins outside of the campus Starbucks were constantly overflowing with their single-use cups, and I wanted to alleviate the amount of trash that students produce in a way that was voluntary and rewarding,” Schaeffer said.
According to Koester, students who bring a reusable cup to Starbucks will also get a discount on their drink. Some hot drinks will cost $0.50 and some cold drinks will cost $2.00.
“I sometimes forget to wash my reusable bottle and just think whatever, but this app will give me motivation and initiative to use my bottle,” sophomore Annaliese Schradt said.
A GEOfence makes it so each barcode can only be scanned inside these locations. Participants can only scan one drink every four hours, and only get four drinks a day.
According to the Fill It Forward website, participants are helping to bring water to people in need. Over 2,000,000 cups of clean water have been given around the world.
“Incentive works,” first-year Annalise Sutter said. “You just have to find what people want."