June 06, 2022 | University Partners

De Montfort University Global’s work on sustainability sees them shortlisted for national award

Jetting students around the world with DMU Global has given thousands of De Montfort University Leicester (DMU) students opportunities they might previously have only dreamt of taking part in.

Trips across Europe, the Americas, Asia and Africa to help with studies, develop new skills and experience new cultures have brought huge benefits.

But the DMU Global Mobility Office, which organises the experiences, has always been aware of the negative impact flights have on the environment.

The DMU Global team are delighted to be nominated.

So they were delighted to find out that a series of green initiatives they introduced over the last two years has led to DMU Global being shortlisted in the international ‘The PIEoneer Awards 2022’ in the ‘Sustainable International Impact’ category.

The national recognition has come about after DMU Global:

  • Committed to reducing the number of overseas trips, recognising carbon emissions are especially high for short-haul flights
  • Introduced new virtual international experiences, which has allowed DMU Global to create a more inclusive, accessible and sustainable programme. In the last two years there have been 80 experiences with close to 1,000 students taking part. Student feedback showed there was 95% satisfaction with the virtual experiences
  • Created, in collaboration with DMU academics, a new learning module for those flying overseas, to help students develop a better understanding of the impact of travel on the environment while recommending actions to be a greener traveller
  • Offered training to academics and given them the tools to develop alternative virtual international experiences that do not require overseas travel.

The DMU Global work is also helping DMU with its ‘Carbon Plan to 2032’ which has seen the campus starting to work towards net-zero operations.

Leo Smith, Head of Global Mobility at DMU, said: “We are delighted to be shortlisted for this award, which recognises the positive and proactive steps we have taken as a team in response to the climate crisis.

"We understand the impact that flying can have on the environment through carbon emissions, but are committed to diversifying and adapting our international activities to ensure that they are more sustainable.

"To bolster the sustainability message, many of the international experiences offered by DMU Global are aligned to the university’s commitment to the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals, to help DMU students learn about and equip them with the skills to address these global challenges in the future."

DMU is the global hub for Sustainable Development Goal 16 to promote peace, justice and strong institutions.

The PIEoneer Awards celebrate innovation and achievement across the global education industry. They recognise both individuals and organisations who are pushing professional standards, evolving their engagement or redefining the international student experience.

This is the sixth year the awards have run and winners will be announced at a ceremony in London on Friday 9 September.