COMMUNITY NEWS

Cultivating Sustainable Futures

Friday, 11 August 2023
Investigator College's second annual Sustainable Futures Day ran to high praise and acclaim once again this year, as students from leading Anglican schools gathered at the Currency Creek EcoCentre for a student-organised day of inspiration, networking and practical experience to promote career pathways in the environmental, land care and agricultural sectors.
Liam Hensel

Liam Hensel

Director of Marketing and Community Engagement

Student-led and returning for a second-straight year, Investigator College’s annual Sustainable Futures Day saw more than 40 student delegates, representing eight of South Australia’s leading schools, convene at the College’s Currency Creek EcoCentre.

Joined by an impressive program of presenters, workshop facilitators and industry experts, the event once again facilitated a unique opportunity for future leaders to explore post-school pathways which championed existing passions for the environment, land care and ecological sustainability. Focusing on links to industry and the future of sustainability in the fields of agriculture, land management, ecology and conservation, this year’s event saw attendees participate in a diverse range of presentations, workshops and practical activities including fieldwork to support the surveying of native fish populations with Dr. Sylvia Zukowski of Aquasave NGO, tree planting and ecosystem reconstruction (led by Investigator College Year 9 student and Youth Environment Council of South Australia ambassador, Django Westmoreland), and exploring the emerging field of drone use in agriculture with Dan French of AirborneLogic.

Organised in its entirety by Year 12 students Hayley Marks and Loryn Cody, the attendance of representatives from Walford Anglican School, Trinity College and Pulteney Grammar School – many of whom had travelled over two hours in order to attend – was a testament to the quality of the experiences on offer, and highlighted the value of the EcoCentre in providing a space for hands-on learning and immersion in the natural environment. Reflecting on the success of the day, Hayley and Loryn were quick to acknowledge the generous and engaging nature of the presenters, and the importance of providing an avenue for students to follow their passions into meaningful careers:

“Students were able to network, ask questions and reflect on their aspirations for the future… each of our workshops this year provided an insight on how a passion for the environment can be followed directly into industries that not only provide careers, but also reflect a commitment to sustainability. [Having] workshops hosted by experts in ecology, agriculture, land management and technology, and speakers that inspire students to seek out opportunities to align their passion with their future vocation is something that makes Sustainable Futures unique.”

Adding to the impressive itinerary of this year’s program were an in-depth presentation on small dairy manufacturing from Rebekah McCaul (Alexandrina Cheese), an extensive exploration of organic and biodynamic vineyard operations from Melissa Brown (Gemtree Wines) and an introduction to the study of Animal Behaviour with Dr. Diane Colombelli-Négrel of Flinders University, before the day concluded with an opportunity for students to create a ‘next-steps’ action plan for their journey into an environmental career.

Commenting on the importance of the day in an interview with the Fleurieu Sun, Senior School Science, Agriculture, Horticulture, Conservation and Environmental Education Teacher, Ms. Nat Gibert, was exceptionally proud of the students’ effort in coordinating the day.

“Programs like this are so important to students who feel like they might have a future in these industries. Hayley and Loryn have both done really well… it’s been a massive effort, but it’s definitely been successful.”

Sustainable Futures – and the value it provides in cultivating pathways for young environmentalists – is set to continue into the future, with this year’s organisers feeling optimistic about the legacy they are leaving at the school for next year’s Seniors:

“The day is so valuable. We are excited to see the event keep growing next year!”

 


 

Investigator College would like to thank all exhibitors, presenters, facilitators and guests for participating in this year’s Sustainable Futures Day, and would like to extend special gratitude and congratulations to Hayley Marks and Loryn Cody for their passion and effort in organising such a successful and valuable day for both our students and our visitors. Amazing work!

Image Gallery

Liam Hensel
Director of Marketing and Community Engagement
lhensel@investigator.sa.edu.au

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