Lecturer a finalist in 2021 Green Gown Awards

Dr Eleanor Atkins, Lecturer in Biological and Biomedical Sciences, has been shortlisted in the prestigious Sustainability Champion category.

Dr Eleanor Atkins (front right) with students involved in Wild Staffs

“Together with her students, she has also come up with project proposals which are making a tangible difference to our campus environment and will make sure we are on course to achieve our goal of achieving net zero by 2030. She is a sustainability champion and so deserving of this shortlisting.

Sally McGill, Chief Finance Officer and Deputy Chief Executive Officer

Since joining the University’s academic team in 2019, Elle has advised the University on its biodiversity and sustainability activities although her influence extends beyond the University to local authorities and Wildlife Trusts.

Elle has played a leading role in the Great Green Gathering and Staffs Does Spring Watch which took place at the University during EU green week and she has also encouraged her students to create biodiverse landscapes on the University campus through the Wild Staffs project.

She added: “Projects we have worked on include producing biodiversity net gain recommendations for several construction projects including the new Catalyst building and Nursery and Forest School. Students were able to apply their academic theory to real work projects and encourage positive changes for the environment, biodiversity and sustainability on their own campus beyond any legal requirement to do so.

“This has also facilitated the link between students’ academic theory and real-world learning, involving them in projects that will impact the environment around them, just as they aspire to do in their future careers.”

Sally McGill, Chief Finance Officer and Deputy Chief Executive Officer, said: “Elle is an invaluable member of the University’s Sustainability Task Group and has quickly established herself as a go-to for guidance on areas of sustainability, biodiversity and green infrastructure.”

“Together with her students, she has also come up with project proposals which are making a tangible difference to our campus environment and will make sure we are on course to achieve our goal of achieving net zero by 2030. She is a sustainability champion and so deserving of this shortlisting.”

This year’s UK and Ireland Green Gown Awards’ Finalists, representing over 862,219 students and 156,000 staff, are proving the value that universities and colleges bring to the economy and society even in the most challenging times.

The Finalists emphasise an institution’s role in enabling and empowering young people to tackle pressing global issues to ensure they have a better tomorrow.

Iain Patton, CEO of the Environmental Association for Universities and College (EAUC) said: "It is clear from the number and quality of applications, that sustainability and the now irreversible sustainability movement is not only resilient but profoundly energised, opportunistic and dynamic!

UK and Irish universities and colleges have turned Covid 19 challenges into opportunities and ensured that every change is a change for sustainability. A reset of our economic and social foundations is happening and the Green Gown Awards are all the more important to inspire and scale change for sustainability. Congratulations to all our finalists."

 

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