West Midlands Mayor Andy Street visits Climate Literacy Skills Bootcamp at Birmingham City University

By Birmingham City University
schedule16th Mar 23

A new Skills Bootcamp designed to help employees in the West Midlands incorporate climate literacy practices into their everyday working lives has been launched in Birmingham.

The Climate Literacy for Sustainable Futures Skills Bootcamp, backed by the West Midlands Combined Authority (WMCA) and delivered by Birmingham School of Architecture and Design (BSoAD) at Birmingham City University aims to assist learners in developing a full understanding of sustainable strategies together with sought-after, sector-specific skills and their application in a real work context.

The free Skills Bootcamp has so far been attended by industry specialists from a wide range of disciplines who all wish to introduce pioneering environmental and sustainable methodology into their existing skillsets.

Andy Street, Mayor of the West Midlands and WMCA chair, recently took the opportunity to visit BCU to speak to students and staff associated with the course.

The Mayor said “The UK government is committed to reaching net zero by 2050, which means there’s a clear and pressing need to develop talent across a wide range of industry sectors that is truly climate literate and well placed to effect change in their workplaces.

“Given our region’s own #WM2041 net zero commitment, it’s great to see good take-up on WMCA-backed Skills Bootcamps.

“Speaking to all the learners and lecturers, it’s clear that everyone is playing their part as we seek to reduce our carbon footprint and tackle the climate emergency together.”

One participant on the course is Fiona Allen, who works as a Sustainability Manager and has joined the course to further her learning in recycling methodologies.

She said, "I’m currently working on a net zero strategy in my full-time role so the course has been really insightful and informative in helping to ensure I can apply climate literacy practices into the project I’m working on.

“We only have one planet so we need to look after it. Seeing participants from across different sectors on this course taking on the methods we are being taught and thinking about how they can make their work more sustainable is very inspiring.”

Professor Julian Beer, deputy vice-chancellor (Research, Innovation and Enterprise) at Birmingham City University, said: “We're delighted to host the Climate Literacy for Sustainable Futures Skills Bootcamp here at Birmingham City University.

“As the University for Birmingham, it is vital that we play our part in driving sustainability and net zero initiatives right across the city and region. The Skills Bootcamp does just that, empowering businesses and employees across a range of industries to take action to help address the climate emergency.”

Dr Jemma Browne, Head of School at Birmingham School of Architecture and Design, said "At BSoAD one of our core aims is to engage with the city to tackle the climate and biodiversity crisis and we're delighted to have been able to work with the WMCA to be able to deliver this course to highlight that message.

“Our real aim was to make sure that the learners that came on the Skills Bootcamp went away with the skills, knowledge and attributes to help impact change within their workplace and in their everyday practice.

Cllr George Duggins, WMCA portfolio lead for skills and productivity and leader of Coventry City Council said: "Climate Change can be an overwhelming topic and informing yourself is such an important first step. I would urge anyone who would like to upskill and broaden their knowledge of how they can integrate best practices into their current role to go online and find out more."

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