St. Olaf College | News

Ole Thrift Shop makes its debut this week

Organizers of the inaugural Ole Thrift Shop include (from left) Sudip Bhandari ’14, Lyla Amini ’14, Emily Hoar ’16, and Corey Ruder ’16.

This Friday a group of St. Olaf College students will combine the spirit of entrepreneurship with efforts to increase sustainability through the inaugural Ole Thrift Shop.

The “shop,” supported by an entrepreneurial grant from the Piper Center for Vocation and Career, will sell items that St. Olaf students donated as they moved out of the residence halls this past spring. Rather than throw or recycle the items, students placed them in Ole Thrift Shop collection boxes throughout campus. Proceeds from this week’s sale will support other environmentally sustainable projects on campus as well as several local organizations.

The students organizing the project — Sudip Bhandari ’14, Lyla Amini ’14, Corey Ruder ’16, and Emily Hoar ’16 — hope the Ole Thrift Shop will reduce the waste generated by student residential life and encourage entrepreneurship.

“While we are addressing an environmental issue, we are also trying to foster entrepreneurship among students,” Bhandari says. “We are reinvesting our profit in the St. Olaf community to support ideas that are creative and sustainable.”

Organizers say the Ole Thrift Shop’s motto, “Choose to Reuse,” reflects their goal of encouraging students to think intentionally about what they buy and throw away.

“We view this campaign as contributing to the social, cultural, and environmental activism required to make a difference on our campus,” says Amini.