During the Spring 2008 move-​​out, then-​​Northeastern sopho­more Dan Abrams noticed his room­mate was preparing to junk an unwanted toaster.

There was nothing wrong with it,” Abrams recalls. “I didn’t think it should just go into the trash. It was per­fectly fine.”

So Abrams took it home to New York for the summer, and the topic came up one day with a friend attending another uni­ver­sity, who men­tioned her insti­tu­tion had a student-​​led ini­tia­tive to col­lect sim­ilar items stu­dents were looking to throw away. “I came back my third year thinking this was some­thing that has to come to Northeastern’s campus,” said Abrams, who passed that same toaster along to another friend.

His goal ulti­mately blos­somed into Trash2Treasure, a student-​​run pro­gram spon­sored by the Husky Energy Action Team (HEAT), which works toward envi­ron­mental sus­tain­ability and carbon neu­trality at the University.

Abrams said Trash2Treasure hopes to create a cycle of com­mu­nity reuse. The pro­gram encour­ages stu­dents to donate items they might oth­er­wise throw away before and during the move-​​out period. Those items are stored off-​​campus over the summer and then sold back to stu­dents at a garage sale event during Wel­come Week. The money raised is donated to a local charity, Alter­na­tives for Com­mu­nity and Environment.

In the three years since Trash2Treasure has held end-​​of-​​year col­lec­tions, the most pop­ular items donated have included college-​​life sta­ples such as clothing, tele­vi­sion sets, mir­rors and plastic storage units. This year, the items included new North Face jackets, run­ning shoes and even a Chia Pet. Abrams still remem­bers the first item Trash2Treasure ever col­lected – a six-​​foot-​​long blue plastic sled.

It’s not that dif­fi­cult to sell stu­dents on giving us their stuff, because we want what they already don’t want,” Abrams said.

In fall 2010, Trash2Treasure was able to donate $5,000 from col­lec­tions over the first two years. In addi­tion, the group also donated 378 pounds of non-​​perishable food col­lected through the pro­gram to the Greater Boston Food Bank, Abrams said.

After the fall 2011 sale, Abrams expects to eclipse the 2010 figure for money raised — in part due to the efforts of the facil­i­ties staff at North­eastern, who pro­vided logis­tical sup­port and extra hands to make the pro­gram a growing success.

Trash2Treasure is a great stu­dent ini­tia­tive that facil­i­ties is delighted to sup­port,” said Jack Malone, director of facil­i­ties ser­vices. “We think it’s only going to get better year in and year out.”

The orga­ni­za­tion has also part­nered with Door to Door, a national com­pany pro­viding moving and storage services.

It’s exploded beyond our expec­ta­tions,” said Abrams, who grad­u­ated ear­lier this month with an envi­ron­mental sci­ences degree. He is now working for the Envi­ron­mental Pro­tec­tion Agency in Boston, one of his co-​​op employers at Northeastern.