Home » What We Do » Waste and Recycling » Non-traditional Recycling Options » Computers & Electronics Recycling

Computers & Electronics Recycling

What is the electronics recycling program?

The Vanderbilt Electronics Recycling Program is a mechanism for disposing of equipment such as monitors, CPUs, keyboards, printers, fax machines, and other electronic equipment such as TVs and even microwaves.

Why can’t I just throw my old computer and electronics equipment in the dumpster?

Some electronic equipment contains levels of heavy metals that could leach out and contaminate water supplies if placed in an ordinary landfill. Environmental laws forbid this equipment from being disposed of as ordinary trash.

****Chapter 10 (page 44) of the Vanderbilt Procurement Policies and Procedures for Departments requires that all university-owned equipment, capital or non-capital, be processed through VUMC Surplus Services.****

But I’ve been told that if my computer doesn’t work, no one will take it for recycling. Is that true?

No. All computer equipment will be accepted, regardless of its condition or brand. All parts of the electronics system will be accepted (laptops, printers, keyboards, CPU towers, cords, and monitors).

How much does it cost to use this Program?

Nothing. This service, including collection, is provided FREE OF CHARGE.

What happens to the equipment?

If the equipment is in good working condition, it will be redistributed, sold, or donated, if possible. If the equipment is unusable, it is shipped to an electronics recycling facility that disassembles or shreds the electronics, segregates the parts, and recycles the materials.

What do I do when I no longer want my electronics (monitors, keyboards, etc., but not including data storage devices such as CPUs and laptops)?

If your VU equipment is not currently registered in the Vanderbilt System (i.e., it is not labeled with a Vanderbilt Property tag), simply contact the VUMC Storage and Services Department at 936-4626 and request a Work Order form. You can fill out the form and submit it by fax to the number on the form to have your computer equipment picked up.

If your equipment is registered in the Vanderbilt System, (i.e. it does have a Vanderbilt property tag) simply fill out a Vanderbilt University Property Transmittal Form and submit it according to the directions on the form. Please fill out as much information as is possible on the form.

What do I do when I no longer want my CPU or laptop?

You will follow the same process as above to have the equipment collected from your area and taken to the warehouse. However, you will first need to abide by the Vanderbilt Policy on Disposal of Information on Electronic Devices and Media or VUMC Policy OP 10-40.22, Disposal of Confidential and Restricted Information.

***You must ensure that all sensitive information and Vanderbilt licensed software has been removed from the hard drive. The warehouse staff will not remove your equipment without a completed and signed Tracking Document for a Cleaned Electronic Storage Device Form. Your local computer support provider can erase the hard drive and complete this form. The completed form should be attached to the equipment prior to collection by warehouse staff. If you do not know who your local computer support provider is, visit the ITS website for more information.***

How do I dispose of removable electronic media (tapes, floppy disks, zip drives, CDs, DVDs, or VHS) properly?

Any non-confidential electronic media items may be recycled when you have another scheduled electronic recycling pick up. Please separate the electronic media item from its case, and send both along for recycling. Any confidential information contained on these items MUST be destroyed. Please refer to the Vanderbilt Policy on Disposal of Information on Electronic Devices and Media and VUMC Policy OP 10-40.22, Disposal of Confidential and Restricted Information. If you no longer have a drive that will read and format the media, it may be physically destroyed. Please use the security tools provided by ITS if you need assistance with destruction of electronic media.

If there is no confidential information on your electronic media, you may separate it from its case, and send both items (case and item) along for recycling “as is” whenever you have another electronic recycling pick up scheduled.

Electronics Recycling Quick Links


Contact the Vanderbilt University Medical Center Storage and Services Department at 936-4626 or e-mail SEMO with any questions or if you encounter any problems with the Electronics Recycling Program.  For questions about chemical waste collection, visit the VEHS website.