Support Us

PLAN’s Students for Zero Waste Conference brings together students, staff, industry innovators, activists, and community members from across the country each Fall. Since 2014, SZW has served as a space for community-building and solution sharing to push the movement forward. It prioritizes “walking the walk” of Zero Waste and centering the needs of those most impacted by the Waste Crisis and systems of oppression. 

SZW 2022 is back in a hybrid format! Tune in to our digital conference platform for live-streamed sessions, events, and student panels. Additionally, we will be hosting a small in-person gathering with local campuses in Philadelphia from November 11-13 at the Philly Free School and Pentridge Station.

5 photos from SZW side-by-side: a group working at a sewing machine; a full staff and volunteer photo, a single speaker, a group outdoors, and two people smiling and talking.


SZW may look a bit different in a hybrid format, but the framework and content will be just as familiar as years past. The conference will include networking & discussion groups, a community zero waste fair, activity sessions, and panels covering topics related to waste and environmental justice. The in-person portion of the conference is limited to students within a 2-3 hour (driving/transit) radius from Philadelphia—but all are welcome to join digitally.

We’re offering registration discounts to our member campuses! Access the discount code by making a PLAN account and signing into the Member Hub. Tickets are sold on a sliding scale for all others. Note: We never turn students away for a lack of funds. Reach out to with any questions or concerns.

Purple gradient with the text "Schedule" overlaid with a photo of a group gathered in front of a projector for a session at SZW 2018.

This year’s SZW will include both digital events on our conference app, Whova, and in-person events at the Philly Free School and Pentridge Station. View  the full 2022 program here.

  • 9-10th: Live, virtual student panels (digital)
  • 11th: Keynote and community events (hybrid)
  • 12th: Field trips and workshops (hybrid)
  • 13th: Zero Waste Fair & brunch (in-person) and closing ceremony (hybrid)

Purple gradient with the text "Volunteers" overlaid with a photo of PLAN staff and volunteers from 2019.
Volunteers help make SZW possible! If you’re local to Philly, join us in-person to support with registration or set-up. If you’d like to be involved virtually, help out with outreach or day-of tech support. All volunteers will receive a free conference ticket! Reach out to our Events Director Ramiro if you are interested in offering your time to SZW.

Screenshot with a decorative purple border of a 2021 SZW digital session. It is with influencer Queer Brown Vegan and a handful of particpants.
Screenshot of the 2021 Whova Digital conference platform. It shows the main menu and a cap from the Disability Justice panel.

Photos and screenshots from SZW 2018, 2019, and 2021

Thank You to our 2022 Sponsors

Logos of partners sponsoring the 2022 conference, including Break Free From Plastic, Global Alliance Against Incinerators, Generation Conscious, People Over Petro, Sierra Club, Oceana, Plaine Products, Center for Coalfield Justice, FracTracker, and Klean Kanteen.