In Fall 2011, a collaboration between ASUCD and the Graduate Student Association (GSA) will bring the Aggie ReStore, a new unit that will sell reusable goods at low prices.
ASUCD Senator Darwin Moosavi and graduate students Carol Shu and Margot Bennett have been working on the project since Fall 2010. Shu, the principal initiator of the project, said that the store will bring affordable items to students while promoting sustainability.
“When you are buying something that is used, you are saving something from the landfill and you’re saving a lot of resources,” Shu said. “Our main priority is to provide items for students at a low cost but there’s the side benefit of increasing campus sustainability.”
Initially, the store will gain its goods from donations from campus departments and students, Shu said. The team is working with UC Davis Facilities Management to have a collection route to the departments, and there will be a student drop-off zone. The team is also trying to work with Student Housing to collect items from when students are moving out of the dorms.
As the unit expands, Moosavi said that they hope to collect items from the Davis community as well.
The store will sell various items such as CDs, DVDs, books, art supplies, school supplies and clothing, Moosavi said. The store will not carry objects such as furniture and large electronics, but small electronics will be accepted.
Prices will range from 10 cents to $10. Old editions of textbooks can be expected to be sold for about $10, and Shu said that folders and binders can be expected to be sold for around 25 cents to 50 cents.
“The goal is to find items that students will reuse and not just junk that people want to get rid of,” Moosavi said. “Kind of like what a thrift store does.”
As of last Friday, the Unit Relocation and Space Allocation Committee confirmed the store’s location to be next to STA Travel in the Memorial Union, Moosavi said.
Moosavi noted that applications for the ASUCD director of the store are currently up on Aggie Job Link until June 1, which is a paid position. Intern applications will be up in the fall.
The store will run under the ASUCD budget and all profit will go back into the ASUCD budget, Moosavi said. The profit will be used to help Aggie ReStore function as a self-sustaining, zero-subsidy unit throughout the years.
The GSA Assembly will meet June 1 to discuss whether they should fund the payment of the GSA director for the store, said Brian Riley, GSA chair. The executive council will be making a recommendation on that date for the payment, but they have not decided yet whether the director should be paid by stipend or as an hourly employee. If the assembly does not approve, the GSA director will be a volunteer position.
In the future, the team is also hoping to open a studio stage where students can learn how to make reusable items, Shu said. However the space in the Memorial Union is not large enough to accommodate that.
Shu noted that the Aggie ReStore is the first of its kind within the UC system.
“Davis is going to be first UC campus with a reused store. Hopefully down the line, other UCs will use us as a model,” she said.
MARTHA GEORGIS can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.