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Master Composter / Master Recycler

Who are Master Composters/Recyclers?

The Master Composter/Recycler Program is a network of trained volunteers who work in partnership with the Cornell Cooperative Extension office to educate the public about composting and recycling.

Volunteers help to extend the reach of the community programming offered by Cornell Cooperative Extension in a number of ways and under the guidance of CCE staff.

Who Becomes a Master Composter/Recycler?

Anyone with an interest in protecting the environment can become a Master Composter/Recycler. The only requirements are willingness to gain and share knowledge about the environmental benefits of composting and recycling, and an interest in volunteering time and enthusiasm as part of a collaborative team.

Master Composters/Recyclers are usually people who already have some knowledge about recycling and/or composting and would like to gain leadership experience by sharing their knowledge with others. Master Composters/Recyclers come from many different backgrounds and are united by their enthusiasm for the environment and their community.

How Do I Become a Master Composter/Recycler?

To become a Master Composter/Recycler fill out a Volunteer Application and return it to the CCE,SC office along with a signed copy of the Volunteer Description.

The 2018 application deadline is August 1st  

Cornell staff will review your qualifications and professional references, and contact you to schedule an interview.

As trainings are announced, you will be notified of the next training dates and locations.

Approved trainees will receive 30 hours of course instruction in the form of twelve (2-3 hour) sessions and two (2 hour) fieldtrips. Training sessions cover a wide variety of topics related to environmental science and technology, the benefits, uses, and methods of composting, recycling, waste reduction, pollution prevention, as well as professional development skills related to community outreach. Training sessions include some hands-on activities and feature many guests who will speak about their professional experiences related to composting and waste reduction.

Is There a Cost to Become a Master Composter/Recycler?

Yes, there is a one-time $60 fee that helps cover the costs of teaching materials and other expenses associated with the training program. A limited number of scholarships are available. Indicate on the Volunteer Application if you'd like to be considered for the scholarship.  

What Does A Master Composter/Recycler Do?

Upon completion of the training program, Master Composters/Recyclers are asked to share their training with the community in the form of 30 hours of volunteer work with Cornell Cooperative Extension over a one year period. Volunteer opportunities are abundant and diverse, and MCRs are free to choose what types of activities or programming they'd like to contribute to. Independent projects will also be considered toward service hours. 

Example Activities for Master Composter/Recycler Volunteers:

  • Assist with teaching classes that are open to the public
  • Assist with giving mini-lectures/demonstrations to youth groups and community organizations
  • Put together exhibits and educational displays for special events
  • Offer support to improve recycling programs for special events, schools, apartment complexes, etc.
  • Answer questions about what/where to recycle, donate, and dispose of various items
  • Answer questions and offer technical assistance/advice related to backyard composting
  • Write articles to contribute to a monthly e-magazine
  • Attend Master Composter/Recycler meetings
  • Develop special events in Schenectady County communities to celebrate America Recycles Day and Earth Day 

And more!

Complete and return a copy of the Volunteer Application, and a signed copy of the Volunteer Description to CCE,SC no later than August 1st 2018.


Volunteer Application

Program Training Details Class of 2017.docx

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Angelina Peone
Recycling and Composting Educator
518-372-1622 ext 264

Last updated December 4, 2017