Sustainability role models get set to inspire

28 September 2009

Students and staff interested in applying their passion for sustainability to their education and careers can come along to a special celebration at The University of Auckland on World Habitat Day – 5 October 2009.

The University Careers Services has invited inspirational students and graduates who are working towards sustainability to talk about their careers at the Fale Pasifika in Wynyard Street. Posters showing these role models and how their education has contributed to their careers will first be blessed at Waipapa Marae. The posters will then be available to view at the Fale Pasifika following an address by Vice-Chancellor Stuart McCutcheon. The address at the Fale Pasifika is at 10.45am, and all staff and students can attend the celebration from then until 4pm.

This event launches the Careers Services’ ‘Sustainability Role Models’ project, and is part of the University’s wider celebrations to mark World Habitat Day.

Senior Careers Consultant Gillian Reynolds says the idea for the project was inspired by students and the academic staff teaching sustainability subjects at the University.

“We noticed many students coming into our office asking how they might apply their skills to the area of sustainability. We did some research and found that there were many jobs available in New Zealand and around the world that involved sustainability, from small businesses to global organisations like the United Nations. These jobs can be found across all disciplines.”

Mrs Reynolds says teaching and research in sustainability will become increasingly important as time goes on, with more employers and project teams seeking people with skills in this area.

The University’s Environmental Coordinator, Lesley Stone, says the Sustainability Role Models project is part of an initiative to recognise, acknowledge and celebrate the sustainability work that is going on at the University across all faculties.

“These role models show us the importance of education in helping to build a sustainable future. The posters are representative of a much wider and larger group of students who want to study in sustainability-related fields, and that’s very encouraging.”

For a full programme of World Habitat Day events visit