Julia Warren begins work at The Recycling Partnership for some non-profit and sustainability exposure

Written by Cara Robinson

My name is Julia Warren and I have just completed my first year in the MPA program at UNC. I went to Appalachian State University for my bachelor’s degree in criminal justice. I plan to use my MPA for a career in nonprofit management. I have just begun my Professional Work Experience (PWE) at The Recycling Partnership (TRP). TRP is a mission driven NGO that focuses on solving for circularity by advancing the recycling infrastructure across the country.
Prior to starting my role at the partnership, I was nervous that I was not qualified for the role. However, I soon learned that the MPA program has equipped me with the tools to exceed expectations. I am incredibly grateful for this opportunity as nonprofit PWEs are hard to come by. I was prepared to spend my summer doing work that I cannot see myself doing after graduation. Although, I got the exact opportunity that I was searching for!
There are three main projects that I am working on during my time here. The first project is researching island recycling. I am investigating the recycling infrastructure in both Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Moreover, I am identifying the gaps in island recycling. The outcome of this research is to discover ways TRP can assist the islands in boosting their diversion rates through providing grant funding. The second project is similar to the first, in which, I am looking into the recycling infrastructure of tribal communities in the US. The goal is to increase equitable access to recycling in undeserved communities. The third project I am working on is researching “pay-as-you-throw” (PAYT) programs across the country. PAYT programs incentivize recycling and composting by charging residents for the amount of waste they generate. The goal of this project is to develop knowledge on the subject and compile data to recommend to communities seeking advice from the partnership.

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