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Student involvement

Environmental initiatives are a great way to make a difference within the University, boost your CV or take an environmental focus in your studies. Take a look at how you can get involved, and email us with any questions or project ideas. You can also ensure you hear about the latest news and opportunities by signing up to our monthly 'Greenlines' update, or by following the team on Facebook and Twitter.

What can I do?

There are lots of ways to get involved in environmental and sustainability issues, including:

Get training and work experience

There are regular opportunities to join teams participating in the Green Impact scheme across the University's departments, for behind-the-scenes insights and making tangible changes. This also includes training on project management, sustainability communications and time management, as well as certified auditor training.

The Living Lab organises and advertises summer internships within the Environment and Energy Section as well as abroad. There’s also an annual award allowing you to develop new ideas, work in a team to tackle specific sustainability issues and apply them to a real-life context. This year's Cambridge Carbon Challenge calls for ideas to reduce building energy use around the University estate.

The Cambridge Institute for Sustainability leadership offers a 'Sustainability Essentials' training course which is free to Cambridge students and provides a University of Cambridge Institute of

Sustainability Leadership certificate for those who successfully complete it. Visit the Careers Service website [Raven login required] for more details

Make change through your studies

The Living Lab offers the opportunity to use the University estate as a case study for your academic project, dissertation or thesis, as well as practical projects outside your studies.

For inspiration and to see what some previous projects have focused on, take a look at these case studies.

Develop your own sustainability idea

A scheme called the Cambridge Carbon Challenge will enable you to put forwards your ideas for reducing the University's carbon emissions in buildings; successful proposals will have the possibility of being fully funded and implemented on the University estate. Further details available here.

Get involved in your College

Student Switch Off is an energy-saving competition between Colleges. Taking part puts you in the running for prizes and cash towards your summer garden party. ‘Like’ Student Switch Off on Facebook and to keep up to date with competitions and other opportunities.

You could also stand to be the Green Officer or equivalent on your JCR or MCR. In the few cases where the role doesn't exist yet, why not see if you can establish the position? If you want advice, just ask

Don’t forget that Green Impact runs in Colleges, and you can get involved with your College Green Impact Team. You can also ask your JCR/MCR Green Officer what opportunities there are.

Join a society

Below are some of the groups and societies that the Environment and Energy Section works with. If you have ideas of anything that could be added, or if your society would like to meet with us, please contact us.

Cambridge Hub

By working closely with over 35 societies, Cambridge Hub connects students with causes and helps build a tighter community of volunteers and change-makers. The University provides financial support for the Engage for Change programme, Engage for Change is a programme for people who want to learn to make change happen, through having effective conversations with those around them. Participants learn how to design, implement and evaluate your own environmental sustainability-related interventions, using the University as a testing-ground for the skills that you'll develop through the programme. Sustainability projects are also facilitated through collaboration between the University and Cambridge Hub through the Social Innovation Programme.

Cambridge University Environmental Consulting Society

CUECS is a voluntary organisation with a membership of approximately 300 graduates and undergraduates. They aim to have a positive impact upon environmental problems by helping organisations and individuals (primarily within Cambridge) to alter their practices in cost-effective, efficient and environmentally sound ways.

CUSU Ethical Affairs

The Ethical Affairs Team is the part of the students' union which campaigns on social and environmental sustainability. It aims to promote awareness of environmental and ethical issues among the students, coordinate, represent, and empower them to act. They work with JCR & MCR Green/Environmental Officers across the Colleges.

Zero Carbon

The Cambridge Zero Carbon Society aims to engage students - and members of the local community - with climate change and what we can do about it. They campaign for the university to divest from fossil fuels, and they hold talks and teach-ins on climate justice. Check out their Facebook page for ways to get involved.

Cambridge University Nature Society

Cambridge University Nature Society (NatSoc for short) exists to promote the appreciation, enjoyment and understanding of the natural world. The society run trips to nature reserves in and around Cambridge and host talks and other events relating to conservation, natural history and ecology. Membership is free, and while most of their members are current Cambridge University students, all are welcome.

You can also find other societies in the CUSU Societies Directory.