The Green Gown Awards highlight the collaborative work between the Sustainability team and Westminster’s catering services Aramark in the Campus Health, Food and Drink category to contribute towards creating a sustainable university.
As a finalist in the Green Gown Awards 2020 in the Campus Health, Food and Drink category, Westminster is leading the way with its commitment to the global sustainability agenda and proving the value that universities bring to the economy and society. With its commitment to sustainability, Westminster emphasises the role in enabling and empowering young people to tackle pressing global issues to ensure a better tomorrow.
The Changing for Good project that was submitted to the awards was a positive impact initiative to contribute towards building a sustainable university. The project focused on reducing energy, water and waste consumption while promoting collaboration and awareness of sustainability across the University.
The Sustainability team and Aramark aimed to make significant environmental improvements in line with the University’s principles and hired a student employee to work with university stakeholders to implement a range of initiatives with the aim to demonstrate Westminster’s commitment to the Sustainable Development Goals.
The ambitious programme required input from all areas of the catering team. Some of their key achievements from the Changing for Good project include an overall reduction of 26% in gas consumption and 32% in electricity consumption in the 2018/19 academic year, resulting in a reduction of over 30,000kg of CO2, as well as achieving a number of accreditations including the Green Kitchen Standard. The Cup Fund scheme was also launched, as well as a relaunch of University growing spaces by the sustainability team to grow herbs and vegetables used in Aramark’s menus.
The Changing for Good project has now become an ongoing collaborative programme between the University and Aramark.
Talking about this achievement, Katherine Bojczuk, Environmental and Sustainability Manager at the University of Westminster, said: “The University’s catering team has made some amazing changes over the past year or so to help the campus become more sustainable. It has been great working with them so collaboratively on a whole range of sustainability initiatives – with even more planned for the coming year. Being nominated for this award shows the amazing efforts that the catering and sustainability teams have put into promoting environmental awareness and sustainable actions across our campus – fingers crossed for a win!”
Dain Son, CSR Ambassador at Aramark, added: “We are so excited with the nomination, especially after a difficult year. It represents our hard work towards creating a sustainable catering operation to reflect the university's strict sustainability commitment. The nomination is also a testament to the collaborative efforts from both the University and Aramark.
“Our close relationship with the Westminster Sustainability Team was the key to our positive outcomes as it allowed for us to receive direct feedback from the university and maintain transparency in our operation. This is not commonly seen in the HE sector between universities and contract caterers, therefore we are proud of the great relationship that we have developed with the University of Westminster. The nomination has added a great boost of motivation to our team, and we hope to achieve greater outcomes towards creating a sustainable university."
Learn more about sustainability at the University of Westminster.