The Rosen College of Hospitality Management at the University of Central Florida is a little “greener” these days, thanks to a new Knight on campus. Stationed in the College’s student lounge is a near life-sized replica of UCF mascot Knightro, which was completely constructed out of recycled materials.

Sitting at over five feet tall, the ecofriendly statue was created to help encourage recycling and other environmentally-friendly initiatives throughout the UCF Rosen College campus.

“We wanted to create something that would inspire other UCF students to be more green around campus,” explained Aline Fenelon, one of the seven Student Outreach Services (SOS) staff members who helped fashion the recycled Knightro statue. “Since we don’t have the real Knightro on the Rosen campus, we thought it would be a great idea to recreate him out of recycled materials.”

Fenelon, along with the other SOS staff members, collected over 125 plastic bottles and cereal boxes from students around campus, and used chicken wire and spray paint to create the Knightro replica. In total, the recycled statue took eight hours of labor to construct.

“The recycled Knightro statue symbolizes how UCF students can find creative and fun ways to reuse recyclable items and not just throw them away,” said Fenelon. “We’ve also recently held demonstrations to teach other students how to turn old t-shirts into scarves, and how to create folders and planters out of cereal boxes.”

Fenelon explains that these new ecofriendly initiatives are a continuation of campus-wide efforts to make UCF’s Rosen College more environmentally friendly.

In the spring of 2010, UCF’s Rosen College launched a year-long effort to reduce its consumption of water, electricity and natural gas, which led to $30,000 in savings of utilities. Since then, UCF’s Rosen College has continued to improve upon its ecofriendly efforts and expects to yield similar savings this year.

For more information on green initiatives at UCF’s Rosen College Hospitality Management, please e-mail [email protected].