Sustainability Awards 2018

Staff and students who have gone 'above and beyond' to champion sustainability have been recognised during a University awards ceremony.

Vice-Chancellor Sir Alan Langlands presented the awards

Sir Alan Langlands presenting Sustainability Awards June 2018

Vice-Chancellor, Sir Alan Langlands, presented the Awards and highlighted his pride in everyone’s efforts in embedding sustainability into University culture.

Embedding Sustainability through Collaboration

This award celebrates staff and students who have shared skills, ideas or resources across campus. This could include working together, reusing, buying collaboratively and sharing best practice.

Runner-up: Tim Knighton
As a line manager for the Academic and Business Services team, Tim has conducted a materiality assessment of key items purchased by the school, and reviewed associated local processes to identify areas for improvement.

Winner: Leeds Finance Summit
Organised with the MeetinLeeds Conference Team, the Leeds Finance Summit was a resounding success, with no hard copy materials being used to advertise of promote the event, utilising digital means as the heart of the marketing strategy.

Building Knowledge and Capacity

The award recognises anyone who has helped to educate staff or students on sustainability, who has incorporated the concept of a ‘living lab’, and has shared expertise across campus or the local area.

Runner-up: James McKay
James has spent five years creating and leading collaborative projects with a key focus on the subject of sustainability, involving dozens of staff and students across campus and in the community, reaching more than 1,000 children.

Winner: Dr Catherine Scott
Catherine is a pivotal member of the Living Lab for air quality, which brings together researchers from different schools and services to measure the level of air pollution across campus. She says: “I’m really surprised and grateful for this award. It’s been a pleasure to work on the air quality Living Lab for the past year and I’m pleased it’s gone so well. It's thanks to the hard work of a whole team of people."

Being a Positive Partner in Society

This award is to congratulate anyone who has helped the University to become a Positive Partner in the community. This could include promoting an open and welcoming campus, developing knowledge and skills, and making Leeds a happier and better place to work and live.

Individual runner-up: Emily Rampling
Emily joined the Chemical Process and Engineering team and took on the responsibility of running its Green Impact team, becoming a University Bee Keeper and a Staff Sustainability Architect. She created a website, which is about inspiring others to have a greener life. “I applied for my job, which was an admin role. I never thought I’d be able to embrace sustainability in that, so I want to thank my team for letting me get involved with these opportunities and the sustainability team for helping me be here.”

Positive Partner individual winner: Katy Gregg
Katy has been involved in mentoring in the community, working to set up a co-housing project to transfer derelict land to vibrant neighbourhood. She has also been involved in a project to support international students to volunteer in the community and has set up mutually beneficial opportunities with organisations.

Positive Partner group runner-up: Leeds University Union Music Impact in the Community (LUUMIC)
LUUMIC is a group of 120 members, which has given its time and skills to deliver music workshops to 10 community partners in Leeds, working with the elderly, refugees, asylum seekers and children with learning difficulties.

Group winner for Positive Partner in Society: Leeds University Union Conservation Volunteers
This group has worked to improve the local area and to make a safer, more accessible environment, taking part in weekend conservation projects in the Peak District National Park to improve accessibility. It also promotes sustainability, running Meat-free Mondays and sharing vegetarian recipes.

The award was picked up by Katherine Harbourne and Saskia Luqmani, who said: “We’re really happy to win it but we really couldn’t have done it without all the other volunteers we work with. Everyone has put in a lot of work throughout the year and we’re pleased we’ve won it together."

Making the Most of Resources

This award is to celebrate staff and students that have implemented policies, ideas or encouraged behaviour changes to ensure efficient and effective resource management. Nominations focus on reducing and reusing, sharing, travel, self-generated energy or performance targets.

Runner-up: Faculty of Biological Sciences (FBS) teaching labs and technical staff
A new, simpler and more sustainable system for laundering and organising lab coats in FBS has reduced the number of laundry drop-offs and allowed lab coats to be reused.

Winner: Residential Services
Working with the British Heart Foundation (BHF), Residential Services has been collecting unwanted student items in donation bins, which are transported for re-sale. As a result, 34.5 tonnes have been collected, raising more than £60,000 for research into heart disease.

Sustainable Purchasing

This award is to congratulate anyone who has encouraged best practice and innovation in University purchasing. Nominees could have been involved in the process of purchasing more sustainable equipment or products.

Runner-up: Marie Parker
Lab and Infrastructure Manager at St James’s, Dr Marie Parker worked with purchasing teams, suppliers and key stakeholders to create a more effective and efficient procurement programme.

Winner: Chris Askew
PCB now has a full suite of new printing machines that are compatible with recycled paper stocks. Chris says: “We've been working on this project for two years, so it’s great to get to the point we're at now and to have the recognition of all the work everyone in the department has done."

Student Sustainability Award

This year, we had two awards that celebrated student commitments to sustainability, both through curricular and research work and also through volunteering activities and non-curricular projects.

The Significant Contribution to Sustainability Award highlights any standout, student-led, non curricular work that has had a positive impact across the campus or Leeds community.

Runner-up: Arshdeep Chawla
A member of the Halls Exec at St Marks Postgraduate Residence, Arshdeep works with a team of students to organise activities to bring people together and create community within the halls.

Winner: Kathryn Irish
After identifying the lack of recycling for plastic-coated containers in LS6, Kathryn turned to LUU’s Leeds Better Forum, which implemented her idea as LUU policy for three years. Kathryn then began lobbying Leeds Council, which offered to provide bins. She says: “I’m really excited to have won this award and I hope it can continue to raise awareness about recycling facilities in Leeds."

The Curricular and Research Innovation Award can include any original work at the University that has taken place this year.

Runner-up: Mariam Shaath
Mariam undertook a placement at the local charity, Music and Arts Production (MAP), as part of the Community Engagement Project. She created a video from a room full of ‘bird poop’, which MAP has turned into a promotional tool to communicate with potential sponsors.

Winner: Holly Benfield
Undertaking a placement at MAP, Holly’s initial aim was to organise a fundraising event, despite the event becoming difficult to pin down. Holly adapted to produce a useful ‘event concept document’ – a tangible resource for an under-resourced charity.

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