Georgian College Students’ Association signs Sustainable Development Goals Accord
March 10, 2023
To mark National Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) Week March 6 to 10, Georgian took a monumental step in deepening our commitment and contributions to the SDG Accord.
The Georgian College Students’ Association (GCSA) signed their own SDG Accord at six campuses on March 8, furthering student ownership and empowerment toward integrating sustainability practices on campus and in the community.
Madison Lindsay, President of the Owen Sound GCSA, says, “The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, adopted by all United Nations Member States in 2015, provides a shared blueprint for peace and prosperity for people and the planet, now and into the future.”
Georgian initially signed the SDG Accord in December 2021, committing the college to embed the 17 United Nations Sustainable Development Goals into the college’s curriculum, research, leadership, operations, administration and engagement activities. A committee was established to bring together faculty, operations and partnerships to share, collaborate and promote the goals.
The 17 Sustainable Development Goals are an urgent call for action by all countries – developed and developing – in a global partnership to end poverty, improve health and education, tackle climate change and much more.
“Having the GCSA sign the Accord is a great step toward a sustained future at all Georgian campuses,” says Ishaan Sachdeva, President of the Barrie GCSA. “We’re committed to supporting the SDG through programs already in place at the Barrie Campus and beyond. Some of these include fighting poverty with the Georgian Food Locker, and supporting gender equality through installing gender-inclusive washroom signage and free menstrual product dispensers at all campuses.”
“As students, we’re the next generation of changemakers, and it’s up to us to make a difference,” Ishaan adds. “The Barrie GCSA is also launching a new program called Sustainability Heroes, started by our VP Student Sustainability, Shivang Khamar. This project will help engage students with sustainable initiatives and spread awareness about the importance of sustainability.”
Walls of sticky notes were also set up at the campuses for people to write their own pledges for their personal commitments to sustainability.
Jermaine Jones, VP Community Engagement for the Orillia GCSA, says, “As educators, we have a responsibility to play a transformational role in attaining the SDG. The Orillia Campus has been involved in raising awareness on homelessness with the Coldest Night of the Year and Shinerama fundraisers, as well as contributing toward a cleaner environment through recycling programs and offering sustainable swag items such as reusable straws and water bottles.”
“The GCSA is very committed to student success, and we’re always working to promote equality among the student population and show them that their voices matter,” Jermaine adds. “We hope that after signing this Accord, other students will join and contribute to this important cause.”
As Canada’s first and only Ashoka U designated changemaker college, Georgian’s passion for changemaking and social innovation is embedded in commitments to tackle the SDG in our academic and strategic plan.
Learn more about the SDG Accord and how you can join the global movement.