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Staff Development Day echoes College commitment to shaping environmentally sustainable future.

15th Apr 2024

Today, 15th April, the College came together for its bi-annual development day, an opportunity for staff across all campuses and departments to get involved in a day of workshops, this time with a focus on sustainability.

The day began with an inspiring talk from Ciaran Armstrong, co-founder of Sustainable Pathways, who got the team ready for the action-packed day ahead and introduced how our staff could all take steps in their personal lives and at work to be more environmentally conscious.

Staff then had the opportunity to actively participate in a range of sessions including bike maintenance, bee friendly planting, developing future changemakers, and organising sustainable student trips; and engage with local advocates including Wychwood Forest Trust, Low Carbon Hub, and One Planet Abingdon.

The development day echoed the commitments that Abingdon & Witney College made in its 2022/23 – 2026/27 Strategic Plan; a four-year plan in which the College committed to shaping an environmentally sustainable future, with clear ambitions established to incorporate sustainable choices into curriculum planning, everyday working practices, and investment spending.

A year on, through the support of the Board of Governors and a newly formed Sustainability Committee, the College has already made significant progress: introducing EV charging points, setting a 5% year on year reduction plan for electricity consumption, and incorporating BREEAM on major capital projects.

The College has also begun measuring its carbon emissions, drafted an initial strategy for its next steps, completed a Climate Action Roadmap Assessment, and launched the Net Zero Skills Hub, an education provision dedicated to teachings of sustainability and topics such as renewable energy systems, carbon management, retrofitting, and energy efficiency.

Since its opening, the Hub has hosted a variety of events, bringing together stakeholders from the construction industry, local councils, housing associations, community groups, and private individuals. It has offered a range of introductory renewable energy courses to attracted job seekers and professionals seeking a career change and seen its first cohort of nearly 50 domestic retrofit learners near completion of their course.

Thank you to everyone who contributed to our brilliant staff development day.

If you would like to find out more about sustainability and the College’s Net Zero Skills Hub, please click here.