Sustainability and Access to HE Diplomas

Last week many people around the country celebrated Green Careers Week, a noteworthy event spanning from 6 to 11 November 2023. This initiative sheds light on emerging technologies and careers with the potential to positively transform our world.

At CAVA, we are passionate about enabling adults to achieve their aspirations through education. We recognise the importance of education for sustainable development and the vital role education has to play in the successful achievement for the 17 United Nations' Sustainable Development Goals (SDG). The Access to HE Diploma aligns with several key SDGs, contributing to global progress in tangible ways:

Quality Education (SDG 4)

The Access to HE Diploma serves as a pathway for lifelong learning, designed for adults and to fit around adult’s other commitments. The qualification is regulated by the QAA to ensure it is high quality and provides opportunities for adults to progress to higher education. Through CAVA's collaborative work with subject experts, we ensure the quality and enhancement of Diplomas via rigorous validation and moderation processes.

Gender Equality (SDG 5)

Gender equality and empowerment through education is exemplified by the Access to HE Diplomas. More than 68% of our CAVA students identify as women, who progress to impactful careers and foster positive societal change.

Decent Work and Economic Growth (SDG 8)

Designed to align with career pathways, Access to HE Diplomas encompass diverse sectors, such as Creative Industries; Engineering; Health and Social Care; Land-based Studies; Maritime; and Science. In 2022-23, 90% of our students progressed to employment or further education after completing their studies.

Reduced Inequalities (SDG 10)

The Access to HE Diploma is aimed at breaking down barriers and reducing inequality in education access. In 2022-23, 15% of our students reported living with a learning difficulty and/or disability; 17% were from ethnic minority backgrounds; and 16% were from an area of disadvantage.

Embedding SDGs in Access to HE Diplomas

At CAVA we have been exploring how to best integrate sustainability and green skills into all of our Access to HE Diplomas. In the previous academic year, we consulted with our providers to understand the status of each of their sustainability journeys and how we can best support their efforts. Based on their feedback, this academic year we will be mapping all of our Diplomas and subject areas against the UN SDGs, following the UNESCO Education for Sustainable Development framework. We will also provide enriching resources relevant to each subject area for our course teams to integrate discussions about sustainability and green skills development in their lessons. We will share an update about our progress in early 2024, so watch this space.