Engineering undergraduates do not receive enough content on sustainability in engineering, and it is usually treated as an afterthought rather than an integral part. Furthermore, sustainable engineering education is often aimed at civil engineering students, so students from other disciplines neglect to consider the environmental impact of their work. Often students are taught about standard industry practices to fit a profitable capitalist business model, with little emphasis on creating a sustainable mindset.
To counter this apathy, we will create an exciting MOOC focussed on how sustainability is incorporated in a breadth of engineering disciplines. Our course will be open to students from any engineering discipline and will inspire students to include sustainability in all their work.
Case studies of sustainable projects in civil, mechanical, electrical, and other disciplines will give them an insight of how sustainable engineering can be achieved in the real world, with the technical knowledge behind these innovations being explored. Some will include pre-recorded talks from professional engineers that worked on these projects. It will also be an interactive experience where students can sign up for a live meeting with working engineers and like-minded students who might be studying a different engineering discipline. Assignments will encourage students to think about ways they could have approached projects more sustainably in the past, and organise events exploring sustainability skills and encouraging peers to think about sustainability as fundamental to engineering.
To incentivise students to take the course, it will be ‘low-effort, high-reward'. The course will be structured over 4 weeks with about 4 hours per week but can be taken in any time frame. Upon completion of the course, students will receive a certificate, endorsed by participating universities and firms (to be shared on LinkedIn and put on your CV!), and the title of ‘EWB Sustainability Ambassador’.