I have spent the last six months as a Green Impact Assistant for the Sustainability team at the University. Green Impact is an environmental awards programme run in association with NUS. The scheme provides a framework to improve sustainability at the university through an online workbook with criteria to help departments create a more sustainable workplace, and celebrates achievements made over the year, such as reducing paper usage or promoting more sustainable transport within their office.
The role has involved monthly meetings with the team to complete different aspects of the workbook for their Green Impact team. Over this period, I have helped the team conduct an energy audit of their office, identifying actions to improve its efficiency, as well as offering ideas, and helping promote their creative challenge; which this year was a vegetarian week amongst the team! I was able to contribute individually and as a team, working with Helene, another Green Impact Assistant, developing my communication and project management skills. As a Masters student studying Sustainability and Business, this experience has given me an insight into how material presented in lectures translates in a practical situation. It has also helped me improve my ability to write for a non-academic audience and my ability to work as part of a diverse, professional team.
As part of the scheme, I was also aware of, and in contact with, other Green Impact Assistants working in different departments around the university. It has been really interesting to see how other departments are addressing sustainability, and the innovative initiatives they are putting in place to spread sustainability throughout the university; from building indoor gardens to Fairtrade bake sales! The experience has allowed me to see and be involved with, the university’s commitment to sustainability, and the range of activities happening across campus!
Lucy Atkinson (MSc Sustainability and Business)