Looking for a new (old) computer at a reasonable price? John Kwalick can help.
Looking for a new (old) computer at a reasonable price? John Kwalick can help.

A Win-Win

Kwalick, for one, is happy to have the job. While computers occupy his working day, it’s also computers that take up his free time.

“One of my biggest hobbies is programming,” he says. “I don’t do it for pay; I do it for fun. What’s great about it is I get to work with customers and employees here. At home, I’m more working with my computer. It gives me a little bit of a different view when I come to my job and when I’m at home.”

Melding his passion and profession is great, but Kwalick is also happy that his job not only helps the environment, but also directly helps people.

“One thing about the refurbished computers, they’re a lot less expensive and affordable for people who can’t afford a computer,” Kwalick says. “They want to get in touch with today’s world, and they recognize it’s saving the earth’s materials, but they’re also getting a good deal at the same time.”

At any point, ComputerWorks features about 20 laptops and 20 to 30 desktops out on the sales floor, among other accessories that Abbott says are perfect for the tinkerer who wants to pick up a good part at a good price. The store keeps about 2 million pounds of electronics from going to the landfill every year with recycling — and even more when refurbishing is taken into consideration. Each refurbished computer goes through heavy diagnostic tests to make sure it’s in good condition, something many new computers don’t even go through. “That gives us a good reputation for the computers we sell,” Kwalick says. The machines are also loaded with minimal applications so that they’re not slowed down by unnecessary programs.

Ultimately, it’s a job Kwalick feels good about each day, which he demonstrates through his work. As he says, “If you show you’re excited and happy and you like what you’re doing, the customer is going to feel the same and trust your values.

Editor’s Note: Earth911 partners with many industries, manufacturers and organizations to support its Recycling Directory, the largest in the nation, which is provided to consumers at no cost. Dell Reconnect is one of these partners.

By Haley Shapley

Haley Shapley is based in Seattle, where recycling is just as cool as Macklemore, walking in the rain without an umbrella, and eating locally sourced food. She writes for a wide range of publications, covering everything from sustainability to fitness to travel. Read more of her work here.