Student success at sustainability competition - MK College

MK College students excel at sustainability competition 

Students from MK College’s Skills Academy joined learners from colleges across the South East Midlands for an environmental competition, the first of its kind in the region. 

The Green Future Challenge took place at Moulton College on Wednesday 24th April and also included students from Northampton College and Tresham College. The aim of the event is to educate students in the local area about the importance of sustainability and was the culmination of a challenge that saw students present ideas on how the Further Education sector can become more sustainable.  

Individuals and teams of up to four students were tasked with developing ideas and pitching them, Dragons-Den style, to a panel of sustainability experts, including Steve Frampton MBE, Sustainability Consultant for the Association of Colleges; Michelle Hemmingfield, from the charity, Students organising for Sustainability; and Paul Thompson of SEMLEP, which delivers sustainable economic growth in the South East Midlands. 

Learners from Milton Keynes College were crowned joint winners alongside Northampton College, receiving a prize of £150 and the coveted Eco Trophy. 

Lauren Gallyot, Milton Keynes College Group’s Sustainability Lead says of the event: “The depth of knowledge and enthusiasm that the students across all colleges showed towards their sustainability projects was incredibly inspiring and I look forward to seeing their projects being brought to life.” 

“My colleagues and I were very proud of our learners – the judges said that their project was engaging, unique and tangible, with one judge saying that it was like nothing they’ve ever seen before. The judges even had the opportunity to have a go at one of the puzzles themselves, which was crafted by our construction department using bioplastics (which are made from plants, are biodegradable and can be reshaped multiple times). Plus, we will be using the students’ project as part of the student co-creation of the College Group’s climate action roadmap.” 

One of the students from Milton Keynes College who took part in the competition, Gemma Chamberlain, said: “At the sustainability competition at Moulton College we were given the chance the be the first to present our idea to the judges and audience, there were three other colleges taking part too. We were happy to be given first place along with Northampton College, and we are keen to bring our idea to life.” 

Matt Smith, Executive Director for Business & Skills at Moulton College, adds: “Moulton College was delighted to host this exciting event, which is helping local Colleges and the Further Education sector shine the spotlight on the importance of sustainability. We wanted to collectively put together an initiative to help our students and their respective colleges find ways to drive down their carbon footprints and better contribute to the social and economic sustainability of their communities”. 

To find out more about MK College Group’s work in the local community, visit