It might surprise you to learn that one in 10 jobs in Scotland is currently powered by the circular economy. That’s a figure that’s set to rise as businesses in every sector transition to sustainable practices, whether that’s for benevolent reasons or to benefit their bottom line.
When we think of a ‘green job’, we often imagine STEM-related roles like climate scientists and green engineers. While these are crucial roles in the fight against climate change, if we are to have any hope of succeeding, we need to recognise that every job can be a green job.
New skills for a changing workforce
Businesses are changing. To be in the running for investment and contract opportunities, or to curry favour with consumers, they must now demonstrate their sustainable credentials.
With this turning tide comes a requirement for new skills. Over the next decade, businesses will be looking for people with technical skills like repair, design and programming, as well as soft skills like problem solving, adaptability and collaboration.
Given the significance of sustainability for businesses, it soon won’t just be an advantage to have an awareness of sustainable matters, but a requirement.
That’s why we’re seeing so many colleges making the move towards sustainable commitments, including CDN member institutions that have agreed to introduce sustainability learning plans within the coming months.
Sustainability is not just for STEM
Several world powers including the UK have already enshrined their net-zero targets into law, with many more expected to follow suit following the upcoming UN Climate Conference (COP26) in Glasgow.
As a result, we’re going to see a huge shift towards sustainable practices, not just in STEM businesses, but in other areas including hospitality, business management and administration, construction, tourism, social sciences and the creative industries.
Every role will soon have a sustainable component whether that’s recognising one’s personal role in reducing waste, designing out waste in business processes or taking a leading role in a company’s green practices.
Education for sustainability
With the rapid demand for sustainable skillsets set to rise, today’s college students need to be equipped with the skills and knowledge necessary to join the changing world of work.
With that said, the reality is that many colleges experience significant pressures, with staff, timetables and budgets often overstretched.
To support colleges, The Verdancy Group offers the Waste in the Circular Economy course, which is credit-rated at SCQF Level 5. It equips students with the strong foundation in sustainability needed to enter the workforce with confidence, whilst saving colleges time, money and resources.
We’re already seeing examples of businesses favouring sustainably-minded students. One of our construction industry partners handpicks learners who have completed our Waste in the Circular Economy course at college, as they know they’ll receive a team member who understands their environmental goals.
Soon, every job will be a green job. Let’s help prepare our future workforce for the jobs of tomorrow.