High level praise for Otago Polytechnic’s education for sustainability

Posted on March 16, 2008


Big names have been complimenting Otago Polytechnic on our “every graduate” approach to sustainability. I’m in still in Portland, so here’s the ODT‘s take:

OTAGO Polytechnic’s decision to weave ‘‘education for sustainability’’ into all its courses has won high praise from Green MP Metiria Turei and Dr Morgan Williams, the former Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment. During an address at yesterday’s polytechnic graduation ceremony, Ms Turei congratulated the polytechnic for ‘‘its plan to become a sustainable organisation and a leader in the field of education for sustainability’’. She also praised as ‘‘exceptional’’ the polytechnic’s commitment to ensure all students became ‘‘sustainable practitioners’’ in their respective fields. Polytechnics were leading the way in what education for sustainability meant when it was ‘‘built into the structure of a tertiary institution’’, she said. Ms Turei told polytechnic graduands, ‘‘We have to start living on this planet as if we plan to stay here.’’

Dr Williams said Otago Polytechnic’s ‘‘whole of systems’’ approach to sustainability education was a ‘‘first for New Zealand’’ in tertiary education. The polytechnic’s approach to sustainability education was highly significant and an example to other tertiary institutions on both sides of the Tasman, he said. Dr Williams, who holds university posts in New Zealand and Australia, has been giving a series of talks on sustainability issues in Otago this week.

John Gibb ODT 16th March