Green Gown Awards Finalists Announced

The University has been nominated across four categories in the 2020 Green Gown Awards Australasia.

The finalists were announced Tuesday 15 September and include the Choose to Reuse Plate Program in the Creating Impact category, the Early Learning Centre for Outstanding Leadership Team, Helen Lamb for ACTS Awards of Excellence: Staff, and Chris Dixon and Victoria Townsend for ACTS Awards of Excellence: Student.

The finalists

Helen Lamb, ACTS Awards of Excellence: Staff

Helen Lamb advocates for sustainability in all areas of her professional and personal life, going above her specific job role as Principal of Medley Hall to deliver sustainability initiatives throughout the college. Her achievements include implementing an energy reduction campaign focusing on student energy use in residences, driving the installation of solar panels, facilitating an all-college commitment to a low carbon diet, sharing gardening advice for the college’s veggie patches and getting residents involved in Green Impact. Helen has also continued to promote sustainability during the pandemic by arranging the supply and collection of fully compostable food packaging (where single-use was required) and the supply of reusable masks to residents.

Chris Dixon, ACTS Awards of Excellence: Student

Chris Dixon is studying the Master of Environment and is an active environmentalist both within and outside the University community. He has been an enthusiastic Green Impact Project Assistant and Mentor, a member of the University’s Fairtrade Steering Committee and is a highly involved member of the Postgraduate Environment Network (PEN). In his membership with PEN he has not only served multiple committee roles but also co-created and is host of PEN Podcasts, a sustainability careers podcast aimed at current students. Chris’ passion has led him to form a sustainable food student society during his undergraduate studies at Deakin University, intern in Belgium for a sustainability community organisation, and has extended to previous work in water stewardship.

Victoria Townsend, ACTS Awards of Excellence – Student

Victoria began her sustainability journey when she formed an employee sustainability network while working at investment management firm BlackRock. Now studying the Master of Environment at the University of Melbourne, her drive and enthusiasm for community-building has made her a leader on campus and has inspired many others to engage in sustainable behaviours and activism. Her achievements include serving as President of the Postgraduate Environment Network (2019-2020), volunteering as a Green Impact Project Assistant, interning with the Sustainability Team and volunteering positions outside of the University including at the 2020 Climate Emergency Summit and organising groups for climate rallies.

Choose to Reuse Plate Program, Creating Impact

The Choose to Reuse Plate Program is a reusable dish service offered at Union House on the Parkville campus. The service provides reusable dishware and cutlery to customers at Union House, allowing staff, students and visitors to purchase food and drinks from retailers without disposable packaging. Launched in July 2019, the service diverted over 240,000 disposable items from landfill in the first six months, resulting in a 23.5% decrease in waste to landfill. The service is an Australian University first and has been guided by the University’s target, to reduce waste to landfill to 20kg per person by 2020, as outlined in the Sustainability Plan 2017–2020.

Early Learning Centre, Outstanding Leadership Team

The University of Melbourne Early Learning Centre (ELC) is a vibrant learning community where children, families, teachers and researchers work together to provide exemplary early childhood teaching and learning. The ELC team is passionate about providing education informed by current research and the changing needs of society, particularly based around the principles of Education for Sustainable Development. They engage children in sustainability, instil environment values, facilitate experiences with nature and natural materials and are involved in local, national and international sustainability projects.

The Awards are delivered by Australasian Campuses Towards Sustainability (ACTs) and recognise achievements in sustainability across tertiary institutions.

This year finalists represent 15 institutions across 8 categories, who are leaders in delivering innovative and practical solutions towards sustainability on Australasian campuses.

The Sustainability Team is very proud to showcase such inspiring individuals and initiatives from the University of Melbourne. Congratulations to all finalists and we wish them the best of luck! Winners will be announced at the virtual awards ceremony on 26 November 2020.

To view all other finalists and for more information visit Green Gown Awards Australasia.

More Information

Sustainability Team