May 19: Open Lecture: The role of the University – Educating students for the world of work or the work of the world?

Open Lecture with Dr. Zoe Robinson

The role of the University – Educating students for the world of work or the work of the world?

Time: 15.15-17.00, Thursday May 19, 2016 (Post-session drinks and snacks at a local bar)
Venue: Room 12:130, Blåsenhus, Von Kraemers Allé 1, Uppsala

Download the presentation here.
Is the modern University fit for purpose? Before we can answer that question we need to be clear what that purpose is. In terms of education, is our purpose as educators just to help students get a ‘good’ job? To earn well, to spend more, to contribute to ‘growth’? But what is a ‘good’ job? How much do we encourage students to think about ‘socially responsible’ jobs, to think about how their work can help contribute to a more sustainable society? Is too much focus put on individual actions for sustainability rather than thinking about the impact that students can have through their work?

This session reflects on some of these key questions, and the synergies and contradictions between the employability and sustainability agendas in universities and the emerging sustainability career sector. It will draw on my experiences of trying to bring the sustainability and employability agendas together and through this, gaining support from the University for sustainability activities, while encouraging and enabling our students to make a difference in the world that they will encounter.

Dr Zoe Robinson, Keele UniversityRobinson_Zoe
Zoe is Director of Education for Sustainability at Keele University with responsibility for embedding sustainability in the curriculum and student experience across the whole University. Zoe is also a Reader in Physical Geography and Sustainability at Keele, having started lecturing there in 2004 following a period of time working in environmental consultancy. Zoe was awarded a National Teaching Fellowship from the Higher Education Academy in 2012 for her work contributing to the field of Education for Sustainability in addition to teaching innovations relating to Open Educational Resources and employability.

Zoe currently runs the BSc in Environment and Sustainability at Keele. Zoe was also shortlisted as a Green Gown ‘Sustainability Champion’ in 2013. Alongside continuing research in cold environments and the behaviour and geochemistry of groundwater systems in glacial environments, and energy-focussed community knowledge networks, Zoe has been involved in a wide range of sustainability education and research projects. Zoe co-founded the environmental education group ‘Science for Sustainability’ in 2006 which provides sustainability outreach to schools, school teachers, community groups and the wider public.