The National Union of Students (NUS) recognises that sustainability can and should be embedded into any curriculum. We have been working with academics to ensure sustainability is a key part of their curriculum.
Sheffield Business School
Sheffield Business School are leading by example through their Principles for Responsible Management Education (PRME) external accreditation for quality and excellence. This has led them to systematically embed sustainability and ethics into all courses taught within the college.
They have also included corporate responsibility and ethics in its core strategy at a senior level. They are using their experience to now provide training and development opportunities for wider academic staff to explore ESD opportunities.
Learning and teaching conference
The annual Learning and Teaching Conference allows us to give our teaching staff the opportunity to learn how to embed sustainability into any curriculum.
In previous years, we have worked with SBS to deliver a session entitled ‘how can we equip students with the necessary tools to shape a sustainable future.’ The session outlined the holistic and successful approach of the PRME project and showed the importance of sustainability across the University.
These sessions generate a lot of interest and conversation around education for ESD in higher education institutions. Future sessions and events have been planned to work with academic staff to embed sustainability into courses across all colleges.
Sustainability has also been embedded into physical education and sport coaching courses. The course leaders hold an annual trip for first year students to an outdoor activity camp.
Students develop their team work, problem solving skills and confidence whilst learning about the natural environment. These trips have received positive feedback from students – they consider it to be a valuable university experience.
Media and communications
We have worked with media, arts and communications students on a consultancy project with Venture Matrix. They created promotional videos for us to use on open days and to support our behaviour change campaigns.
The students gained experience working with clients on a sustainability project which will be valuable in their future careers. You can view the videos on our YouTube channel.
We have given lectures to criminology students on food waste at the University. This lecture supported them in their assessed project on food waste initiatives that can support vulnerable people.
We also work with SBS to give an annual lecture to visiting Spanish exchange students. This covers how the University ensures sound, environmentally sustainable, operational practice in all its activities.
We hope to expand ESD across all colleges is an exciting step towards embedding the values throughout the university-wide curriculum.