As part of the NUS Responsible Futures campaign, DMU pledged to take part in the Teach-In week from 19th – 23rd February 2018. The Teach-In week was held to emphasise the importance of and to ‘raise awareness of why the Sustainable Development Goals should be at the heart of further and higher education, and help catalyse the change to make this happen’.
NUS believe that the Teach-In is important as a means of raising awareness of the importance of the Sustainable Development Goals alongside preparing students with the knowledge, skills and attributes to tackle 21st Century challenges. NUS research has also shown that 60% of students, regardless of their discipline, want to learn more about sustainability, which the Teach-In event aims at fulfilling.
DMU have already been awarded a First Class award by the People and Planet University League for being ranked 13th out of 151 institutions for being one of the greenest Universities across the country. Despite already practicing sustainability across the campus, and an annual increase in the number of module descriptions relevant to sustainability increasing to 88, DMU pledged to participate in the NUS Teach-In week. Throughout the week, across the university, several lecturers made the NUS pledge to integrate a particular Sustainable Development Goal into one of their seminars, workshops, case studies, debates and discussions.
9 lecturers across several faculties at the university pledged to take part in the Teach-In week, ranging across faculties from Fashion, Communications and Media Production to Strategic Management and Marketing. Lecturers such as Andrew Reeves, a teacher in the faculty of Engineering and Sustainable Development focused a seminar session with a group of students looking at the Sustainable Development Goal #14 ‘Life Below Water’ in which the impact of plastic waste on sea life was focused on. Other sessions throughout the week included those taught by Emma Wood, a member of the Fashion and Textiles faculty who focused a seminar on Sustainable Cities and Communities.
The Teach-In week at enabled both DMU students and staff to extend existing knowledge of the Sustainable Development Goals provided by the United Nations, yet to also gain an insight into how detrimental human waste and action can be on attaining these goals. The integration of the goals into different courses enables students and staff to realise the relevance of the SDGs across varied disciplines, and with the realisation of their prevalence, hopefully influence both staff and student to make positive changes about their lives towards attaining the goals.