Wrexham Glyndwr University becomes first in Wales to end fossil fuel recruitment

Outdoor space on campus

Date: 1st December 2022

Wrexham Glyndwr University has taken steps to support a sustainable workforce for the future by becoming the first university in Wales to have ended fossil fuel recruitment on its campuses.

The institution, which serves a total of 7,500 students across its three North Wales campuses, has adopted an Ethical Careers Policy stating that it “will not hold relationships of any kind with oil, gas or mining companies as part of its commitment to increased sustainability and addressing the climate crisis.”

The university has said that its Careers and Employability Service seeks to facilitate collaboration that contributes to the betterment of society and the environment.

Lynda Powell, Executive Director of Operations, at Wrexham Glyndwr University said: “As part of our ongoing environmental sustainability strategy, Wrexham Glyndwr University are striving to improve our environmental performance and are working to provide education for sustainable development to all our students.

“Our Ethical Careers Policy is key to ensuring that university students are presented with opportunities to reflect upon, understand and articulate their own values. This gives graduates the confidence to align themselves with institutions and organisations whose values align with their own.

“With many graduate recruiters adopting a values-based selection process, the approach adopted here, supports future generations to make meaningful career decisions, in order to secure appropriate and meaningful employment.

“Through this, we are supporting the development of a sustainable workforce for the future, coupled with taking ambitious steps to achieve the Welsh Government target of Net Zero for the public sector by 2030.”

The university is one of four universities to have ended fossil fuel recruitment on its campuses – the other three universities include Birkbeck, University of London; the University of Bedfordshire; and University of Arts, London.

The campaign, coordinated by student-led campaigning charity People & Planet, is pushing university careers services to cut ties with the oil, gas and mining industries on both climate and human rights grounds, and in solidarity with communities most affected by fossil fuel extraction.

Fossil Free Careers has been backed by both staff and students, receiving official endorsements from both the UK’s largest student and staff bodies, National Union of Students (NUS) and the University and College Union (UCU).

J Clarke, Co-Director of Climate Campaigns at People & Planet, added: “Wrexham Glyndwr University should rightly be recognised for its climate leadership among Welsh higher education institutions.

“Being the first adopter of Fossil Free Careers in Wales sets a strong precedent in the nation’s university sector, and we hope many more will follow. It is vital that our universities show with actions, not words that they are taking the side of climate justice, and not the industries driving us deeper into a climate crisis that is harming the least responsible first and worst.”