Green Campus Spotlight: PSU’s new Supply Studio provides free art supplies to students
Author: Campus Sustainability Office
Posted: March 30, 2016

Meet the Reuse Room’s younger sister: The Supply Studio

Art students looking for free supplies and materials have a new outlet on campus: the Supply Studio. From acrylic paints to colored pencils, paper, twine, rubber cement, popsicle sticks, and more, the new Supply Studio is a place for the PSU community to give, take, and share art supplies—both saving money and reducing waste.

Created as a Living Lab project, the Supply Studio is located across the street from the Art Building in the Science and Education Center, room 158a, and is a collaboration between the School of Art + Design and the Campus Sustainability Office. PSU’s first reuse space—the Reuse Room in Cramer Hall 180—can and does accept art supplies, but space is limited.

“So much gets made in the School of Art + Design, and it's so excellent to have a spot where our students can not only donate unused art materials, but also a place where they can use other students’ donated supplies. It's a perfect match and a huge resource for the students and the school,” said Kate Bingaman-Burt, associate director of the School of Art + Design.

The Supply Studio had its grand opening on Friday, March 4, and students are already taking advantage of the space by dropping off donations and picking up other materials they can use. Meanwhile, the Campus Sustainability Office is tracking incoming and outgoing supplies to measure the impacts of the space on the campus community—estimating both the money it saves and the environmental impacts it avoids compared with buying new items. The Supply Studio is open whenever the building is open, and is free for the entire PSU community to use.  

“The Supply Studio provides a much needed service to the PSU community and fosters a culture of reuse across campus, “said Sam Groshong, an environmental studies student and the reuse coordinator for the Campus Sustainability Office. “It is not only a place to give and take used art supplies, it is also a place to express creativity and build community. We can all benefit from those around us, and it is important to have a space that catalyzes these much needed experiences. I am excited to see how we can all help each other get the things that we need without buying new. And I am excited to see creativity blossom and spread its way through our community.”

Students have been involved in the entire process of establishing the Supply Studio—from developing the idea after participating in a waste audit of the art building through instructor Chris North’s class, to designing the logo and promotional materials, collecting and curating donations, and coordinating events in the space.

Speaking of events—join the Supply Studio for an outdoor event April 14, 3-6 p.m. at the new PSU Backyard behind the Art Building.

Reusing items both reduces waste and supports PSU's sustainability goals. From resource extraction and production to distribution and disposal, the life cycle of an average product has a huge environmental footprint. Through reusing existing products, we can greatly minimize impacts on our environment as well as save students money. Thank you to all those involved with the Supply Studio for supporting resource conservation and stewardship through reuse!

The PSU Living Lab program is a partnership between the PSU Campus Sustainability Office, Facilities and Property Management department, and Institute for Sustainable Solutions that matches motivated faculty and students with University staff to work on projects that support PSU’s campus sustainability goals.