Leeds University scooped two prizes in this year’s Green Gown Awards in recognition for its environmentally friendly initiatives.
The university won the award for Continuous Improvement, while their Student Union picked up the gong in the Student Initiative Category.
The students were applauded for their achievements which included: preventing the selling of un-recyclable bottled water in the campus shops, creating a recycling scheme for students’ unwanted clothes and house-hold items, and establishing an environmentally friendly transport scheme.
Isabel Swift, Leeds University’s Volunteer Development Co-ordinator said: ‘The awards are becoming more and more nationally recognisable and we are very proud of our success as our students have worked incredibly hard for this.’
Undergraduates and pupils from over 100 universities and higher education establishments across Britain have been competing to win one of twelve prestigious Green Gown Awards for being the most sustainable institution in the UK.
Commenting on the 2009 Awards, Iain Patton, Executive Director of the EAUC, the administrator of the scheme said: ‘We have been overwhelmed both by the volume and quality of applications this year. I believe this demonstrates the high regard in which the scheme is held and its important role as a champion for sustainability.’
Other triumphs include Queen Margaret University’s winning entry in the Social Responsibility category demonstrating clean living via the return of in-house cleaning. While the University of St Andrew’s showcased the very best in the courses category with their sustainable development undergraduate progamme.
With VIP guests wildlife broadcaster Kate Humble and Minister for Higher Education and Intellectual Property David Lammy MP attending, this year’s ceremony proved to go down a treat. Now all there is to do is get cracking on thoughts for next year’s entries.
Isabel Swift leaves potential contestants with some advice: ‘You must be passionate about the environment and have some great ideas to help the cause.’ She said: ‘If you can tick those boxes then speak to your student union executive and ask them to help you with turning this into a reality, and then just go for it.’
By Helen Knapman