Enactus Accelerates Awareness of the Global Goals
The National Union of Students (NUS) recently published their 8th annual Sustainability Skills research report, including perspectives on sustainability in education from students studying in the UK in both higher and further education. Their research shows that 91% say they agree their place of study should actively incorporate and promote sustainable development, 70% would like to see sustainable development incorporated in all courses, and 81% would like to learn more.
The UN’s 17 sustainability goals have played a huge role in sustainability education in recent year’s however 25% percent of students polled by NUS have never heard of them.
At Enactus, the global goals are embedded into the core of what we do. We facilitate students at 61 universities to develop community empowerment projects that are not only making a difference in the world today but have the momentum to create new careers, spark business innovation and deliver fresh energy in social responsibility.
When asked, 33% of enactus students said they hadn’t heard of the global goals before Enactus but now have a thorough understanding of them. In fact, Enactus students are working towards achieving 16 out of 17 of the SDGs through 141 enterprises all over the country.
Knowing about the global goals has encouraged students to continue engaging with sustainability even after graduation, when asked how knowing about the goals has impacted future career choices our students said:
Understanding the SDGs alongside being involved in projects that are targeting these goals has made me much more aware of how corporate companies are also playing their part in these goals. As I come into my final year at university and the beginning of job applications I am now initially looking into CSR’s because of my growth in engagement and passion for wanting to solve these SDGs.
Kate Clayson – Enactus Nottingham
It definitely crafts my personality as someone who thinks about the social benefits of the company rather than solely monetary. A close example would be how I shape my enterprise back home in Malaysia to strive for both profits as well as impacting the community; in particular youths’ development.
Nur Raudhah Nazran – Enactus Essex
And it’s not just Enactus students who want to make a positive impact on the world around them post education. According to respondents to the survey 75% are willing to take a pay cut in return for meaningful work with a company taking a positive stance on social and environmental sustainability.
With so many students and graduates caring deeply about sustainability what does the future of business look like? If The next generation of business leaders want to change the way business is run to solve the global goals and give back to the community is the future starting to look brighter? We certainly hope so, and will continue to encourage sustainability education and promote global goal awareness throughout the enactus programme and network.
To read the NUS’s report: Student perceptions of sustainability in higher education, click here.