Orange Coast College’s New Recycling Center Now Open

The latest addition to the Orange Coast College (OCC) campus, a renovated recycling facility, opened to the public on September 14. The college welcomed alumni, students, and the public at the center’s grand opening. Learn more:


The five-acre facility is a much-needed upgrade from the previous one-acre spread. The new recycling center boasts more parking spaces, forty-five available spots up from eight, an on-site first-aid station, and men and women’s shower rooms. The new facility features multiple classrooms and offices. The center’s administration building was constructed using eco-friendly materials and the installation of energy-efficient features, such as solar panels.


OCC’s environmental and sustainability coordinator, Michael Carey, was in awe at the new facility.


“Is this real?” he asked.


The expanded plant accepts “traditional” recyclable materials, such as newspaper, scrap metals, plastic bottles, and aluminum. OCC’s recycle center also accepts fax machines, television sets and computer monitors, and cooking oil. The center cannot accept automotive batteries, furniture, or hazardous materials.


OCC was founded in 1947 and opened its first classroom in 1948. The first major construction phase of the college campus was completed in the 1950s. A second construction phase followed in the 1970s. The current blueprint, Vision 2020, allowed for the construction of a new student services building in addition to the recycling center. Future projects for Vision 2020 include a new planetarium and new student housing.


Affordable housing has been an area of concern for the student body. OCC sees a yearly enrollment of more than 24,000 students. An estimated 97 percent of those students are from California but are not necessarily local residents. The average rental cost of a single-bedroom apartment in the OCC area is $1,100 per month with rooms-to-let running at nearly $750 per month.


OCC’s mission is to provide low-cost training and education to students seeking licensed professions and experience for skilled trades. The college is ranked 65th out of the nation’s more than 5,000 community colleges for awarding associate degrees. A large number of OCC graduates complete their education and training at California State University and the university of California. Learn more: