The University made the list of finalists in the Benefitting Society category, where we’ll be competing against a dozen other universities and colleges from across the globe, who have also embarked on fascinating green programmes like us.
Endorsed by the United Nations Environment Programme, the International Green Gown Awards recognise exceptional sustainability initiatives undertaken by universities and colleges around the world. They are also supported by The Association of Commonwealth Universities (ACU), L’Agence Universitaire de la Francophonie (AUF) and the International Association of Universities (IAU).
So how did we achieve this honour? It’s all down to the great work of the Eco Rangers. Working towards Education for Sustainable Development (ESD) approaches at QIU, the club carried out many of their on and off-campus sustainability-related projects that involve working with communities NGO bodies like WWF-Malaysia and AXIATA YTL.
As part of their goal to ‘green’ the QIU campus, the eco leaders have championed environmental activities like the Zero Plastic Straws Campaign, Waste Recycling and Upcycling, Environmental Awareness Week and Environmental Poetry Competition in their cause to spread awareness and educate the QIU community about the United Nations’ 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
The student club oversees the design, development and implementation of these eco-projects for the campus. In their submission for the Green Gowns Award 2020, they related the importance of education through leadership.
Focusing on SDG4 (Quality Education), SDG6 (Clean Water and Sanitation), SDG12 (Responsible Consumption) and SDG15 (Life on Land) among others, the student movement is also reaching out to the world of social media. Their Instagram Poll Sessions raise awareness on global environmental issues in an engaging manner of storytelling.
According to the Green Gown Awards website, the judges in the Benefitting Society category look for ‘innovative community engagement type of initiatives which have an element of proactive, new, community and social concern and positive impacts, rather than the very worthy and commendable ‘grassroots’ and ‘business as usual’ activities,’ so it certainly appears that our Eco-Rangers have made their mark!
We are joined by two other Malaysian finalists in this category, namely the International Islamic University Malaysia (IIUM) and Universiti Sains Islam Malaysia (USIM). QIU is also the only private university from Malaysia to receive the honour.
The other finalists are Ayrshire College (UK), De La Salle Lipa (Phillippines), Facens University Center (Brazil) , HEC Montréal (Canada), Macquarie University (Australia), Northumbria University (UK), Universidad Autónoma de Querétaro (UAQ) (Mexico – two nominations), Universidad del Norte (Colombia) , Universidad Pontificia Comillas (Spain) and Universidad San Ignacio de Loyola (Peru).
The university is committed to being a responsible corporate citizen and emphasises the importance of aligning itself to the United Nations 17 Sustainable Development Goals.
As a higher educational institution, we believe that it is of pivotal importance to integrate sustainability into our academic activities. This is to ensure that our graduates are fully immersed in sustainability practices which they will reinforce in their future professions.
The winners will be announced on July 8, 2020, as part of the United Nations High-Level Political Forum. You can find out about the Virtual Awards Ceremony here.
We are so incredibly excited and proud of our Eco-Rangers for allowing QIU to shine on an international platform once again. We’re all rooting for you to get the trophy!