Is your university or college a leading institution in sustainability? Do you feel it deserves acknowledgment for its dedication to making positive environmental changes? If so, get involved in the Green Gown Awards.
There are 11 categories in all, which means there are plenty of opportunities to enter. For example, the Colleges and Smaller Institutions category takes into account the difficulties that smaller establishments face in implementing rapid changes to their sustainability, commending the efforts they put in with reduced funding available.
The Continuous Improvement – Institutional Change award recognises the efforts made by universities and colleges in the last five years to create greener, more sustainable institutions through the development and change of campuses, faculties and buildings. Meanwhile, the Student Initiatives award gives students the opportunity to be rewarded for their hard work: they are looking for strong unions with organised awareness campaigns, procurement actions and volunteering activities that show a strong commitment to sustainability.
The awards are administered by the Environmental Association for Universities and Colleges (EAUC), which now has over 260 members and is welcoming further applications. “Institutions are very keen to enter,” says Sue Boyd, business development officer for the awards. “It’s an opportunity for institutions to get recognised by fellow colleagues within the sector for their good work.”
The winner of last year’s Student Initiatives award was the Durham University Sustainable Living Action Group. Anthony Crowther, Durham’s student union environment officer, says, “Hopefully we can be a model for other universities looking at how they can put students at the heart of their environmental improvement initiatives.”
The deadline for university and colleges to get their applications in for the Green Gown Awards is 27 February. If you think your institution deserves an award, you can encourage them to apply via a downloadable application form on the EAUC website. The winners of the award will be announced on 23 June at a gala banquet at Imperial College London.