Syracuse University Libraries’ Special Collections Research Center hosted a visit from the PlastiVan® on April 26, 2019.  The PlastiVan® is sponsored by SPE Foundation, an association of more than 22,000 members uniting plastics professionals worldwide and committed to making the plastics world better by providing a forum that generates awareness of issues facing the plastics community to identify solutions that will benefit everyone. The PlastiVan® program travels to schools and companies throughout North America, educating people of all ages about plastics chemistry, history, processing, manufacturing, sustainability and applications.

High school student sitting at table in library working beside Libraries curator
Institute of Technology at Syracuse Central student (left) works with Syracuse University Libraries’ Curator of Plastics and Historical Artifacts, Courtney Asztalos (right) during PlastiVan® field trip.

The PlastiVan® provided a unique field trip for forty local Syracuse high school students from the Institute of Technology at Syracuse Central. PlastiVan® CEO, Eve Vitale, delivered onsite PlastiVan® instruction sessions complete with hands on scientific experiments. Syracuse University Libraries’ Curator of Plastics and Historical Artifacts, Courtney Asztalos, provided one-hour sessions in the Lemke Room showcasing the Libraries’ historical plastics collections.

“The Libraries’ plastics collection is truly unique,” said Courtney Asztalos. “It provides an opportunity to unite chemistry, engineering and history. And the PlastiVan® program helps to spark that curiosity.”

“This is a great opportunity to provide experiential learning to high school students in the area,” said Dean David Seaman, Librarian and Dean of Syracuse University Libraries. “SU Libraries is committed to educating those in our campus and broader community.”