Don’t toss that soda can! Recycling it can help a disabled veteran receive business training at Mays.
Through an initiative called the Dream Machine, PepsiCo and Waste Management hope to increase consumer recycling of beverage containers and at the same time support America’s disabled military veterans by providing substantial financial support to the Entrepreneurship Bootcamp for Veterans with Disabilities (EBV).
EBV is a national program available through six prominent schools of business across the country, including Mays.
PepsiCo and Waste Management hope to use the Dream Machine initiative to increase the U.S. beverage-container recycling rate from 34 percent to 50 percent by 2018 and to provide funding to the Entrepreneurial Bootcamp for Veterans with Disabilities (EBV), which offers free, experiential training in entrepreneurship and small-business management to post-9/11 veterans with disabilities. The more people who recycle bottles and cans in a Dream Machine, the more support PepsiCo will provide to the program to offer career training, education and job creation to returning U.S. veterans.
“We are extremely grateful for the support and backing of Pepsi and Waste Management. This is a significant step forward for us since we rely totally on donations to fund this important program,” says Richard Lester, clinical associate professor of management and director of the EBV program at A&M. “It is my hope to use this support to help create an endowment to sustain our program for the long run.”
What is a Dream Machine?
The Dream Machine kiosks are computerized receptacles that include a personal reward system that allows consumers to collect and redeem points for each bottle or can they recycle. The Dream Machine recycling initiative will introduce thousands of new recycling kiosks in popular public venues to make it more convenient and rewarding for consumers to recycle on the go. (At this time, there is not a Dream Machine in Bryan/College Station.)
PepsiCo has also entered into a partnership with national nonprofit organization Keep America Beautiful to encourage community involvement in the program by engaging nearly 600 local Keep America Beautiful affiliate organizations in communities nationwide.
Partnering with the Entrepreneurial Bootcamp for Veterans with Disabilities is an extension of PepsiCo’s current relationship with American Corporate Partners, a nationwide mentoring program dedicated to helping veterans transition from the armed forces to private enterprise. The Dream Machines will be manufactured by Waste Management’s GreenOps, a subsidiary of Waste Management, and operated by Greenopolis, the first interactive recycling system that brings together online and on-street technologies and rewards people for recycling their beverage containers in kiosks by allowing them to receive awards when they visit greenopolis.com.
Visit facebook.com/dreammachine for more on the Dream Machine initiative.
What is EBV?
Now a national consortium, the Entrepreneurial Bootcamp for Veterans with Disabilities opens the door to business ownership for U.S. veterans by helping them develop skills that relate to the many steps associated with launching and growing a small business.
The EBV program was introduced by the Whitman School of Management at Syracuse University in 2007. Now the program is offered in consortium with Mays, UCLA, Florida State University, Purdue, and the University of Connecticut.
The program consists of a three-week online self-study, a nine-day on-campus residency period, and a year of mentorship with a faculty member volunteer as participants launch their new ventures. The program provides participants not only with the practical skills necessary to make their new venture a success, but also a network of support that will be vital as they launch their ideas.
ThanksÂ to the generous support of corporate sponsors and private individuals, the entire program â€” including tuition, travel and accommodations â€” is offered at no cost to the veterans. (To give to this program at A&M, visit the Texas A&M Foundation website.)
This August, Mays will host its third EBV program. To see coverage from previous years, click here.