This summer, UF Health Shands and PepsiCo™ worked together to provide UF Health Shands employees the opportunity to “Think Green!” For a chance to win a $10,000 sustainability grant provided by PepsiCo™, employees submitted ideas to improve the environmentally responsible use of resources in their department, facility or the organization. The four finalist grant proposals received more than 800 combined votes.
With over 300 votes submitted for their idea, the UF Health Shands and PepsiCo™ Think Green sustainability grant winners were from the UF Health Shands Rehab Hospital Pharmacy team: Marilyn Ryan, R.P.T., CPhT, pharmacy technician, and pharmacists Jim Friske, Pharm.D., Betsy Dodd, Pharm.D., and Bill Garst, Pharm.D. Their sustainability idea is to recycle empty plastic stock pill bottles. The $10,000 grant will go to purchase plastic recycling bins in an effort to significantly reduce plastic waste. Each winning team member also received a $125 gift card and an Apple Watch from Pepsico™.
“We were excited about the fantastic response to the Think Green campaign,” said Lara Zamajtuk, UF Health Shands Operations associate vice president. “Employees from throughout the organization submitted innovative and feasible ideas on how to improve our work environment in eco-friendly ways. Congratulations to all of our finalists and especially to our winners!”
The runner-up finalists were UF Health Shands Rehab Center physical therapists Christine Morgan, P.T., D.P.T., S.C.S., and Debi Jones, P.T., O.C.S., S.C.S. (reducing paper waste); John Rukstalis, RPhT, CPhT, UF Health Shands Rehab Hospital pharmacy technician (use of electric cars); and Joshua Hodges, M.S.N., N.I.S., R.N., UF Health Shands Hospital Nursing Informatics specialist (using refillable cups). PepsiCo™ awarded each runner-up finalist $100 Visa gift cards. All prizes from PepsiCo™ are treated as taxable income and taxes will be covered.
In addition to the runner-up finalists, Laurel McKinney, UF Health Shands Cancer Hospital Orthopaedic Surgical Unit 6 West unit assistant, and Marsha Crane, B.S.N., RN-BC, UF Health Shands Cancer Hospital Orthopaedic Surgical Unit 6 West clinical leader, will each be awarded $50 Visa gift cards from PepsiCo™ for bringing light to a project that can be implemented at UF Health at no additional cost. Their sustainability idea, Project Pad, indicated that UF Health could recondition bed and chair sensor pads instead of throwing them away.
To all who submitted sustainability ideas and voted, thank you for participating in the Think Green campaign. We heard your concerns and we hope this grant effort will have long-lasting positive impacts at UF Health.