Bicycling, Recycling, and Beyond: Public Safety to Host Shred Fest and Bike-to-Campus Day 

With the weather warming, you might have a little spring cleaning planned at home or the office. While decluttering your space, maybe you’ll come across a stack of ancient bills or a box of old electronics.

You're invited to ride your bike to work—and get sensitive documents shredded.
You're invited to ride your bike to work—and get sensitive documents shredded—on Friday.

How do you dispose of them responsibly? Good news: They could be candidates for the next Shred Fest, which will be held on the CUIMC campus on Friday, April 26, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

The event, which is run by Columbia Public Safety and takes place on the CUIMC and Morningside campuses every spring and fall, allows the Columbia community to safely destroy any documents containing private information as well as any personal electronic devices. (To discard CUIMC-owned devices, you must follow CUIMC IT disposal procedures; do not bring them to Shred Fest.) 

“Whatever paper you don’t need—old bills and things like that—bring it that day and get it shredded right in front of you,” says Ricardo Morales, assistant director of crime prevention programs at Columbia Public Safety. “That old computer or hard drive at home—if you’re not using it anymore, bring it that day, and it’ll be crushed.” Two large trucks will be parked near Fort Washington Avenue and West 168th Street, ready for action.

“Both the shredded paper and the electronics will be 100% recycled,” says Morales. The paper bits are reincarnated as toilet paper, and the electronics are broken up into various types of recycling.

Calling all Cyclists

Concurrently with Shred Fest, cycling-related services will be offered at the outdoor Public Safety tables. CUIMC employees and students who ride their bike to campus and register it with the New York City police and Public Safety department will receive a free tuneup. Or drop by to learn how to properly secure your bike and purchase discount bike locks and accessories. 

Velocity, Columbia’s Ride to End Cancer, is partnering with Public Safety on bike-to-campus day activities and will have staff on hand to provide information about Velocity and assist with registration. Representatives from Citi Bike and several New York City bike clubs may be present too.

Tattoos and Tips

Another Public Safety initiative is electronics engraving. Bring your laptops, cell phones, tablets, and other electronic devices during Shred Fest to get them “tattooed” with an ID number and register them with a nationwide recovery program.

“It’s an outstanding lost and found tool,” says Morales. “It makes it hard for a thief to sell on the street, and people think twice about stealing stuff that’s marked.”

Additionally, representatives from the New York City police and fire departments and the Department of Transportation will be available to answer your safety questions.

For more information about Columbia Public Safety programs, visit https://publicsafety.columbia.edu, follow Public Safety on Facebook, or email ps-crimeprevention@columbia.edu.

For more information about properly discarding campus appliances and electronics, visit the CUIMC Facilities and CUIMC IT websites.