Implementing food sustainability through service learning - practical experiences from the NEMOS partners

Implementing food sustainability through service learning

Developing sustainability related skills has become key for higher-education students to successfully address pressing global challenges such as food waste or climate change in their professional future. But how can universities support them in this crucial learning process?

The Erasmus+ co-funded project NEMOS – A new educational model for acquisition of sustainability competences through service-learning, is currently exploring how sustainability can be effectively embedded into food degrees curricula. The seminar on University, Sustainability and Service-learning, hosted by the Public University of Navarra (UPNA) in Pamplona on 6 June 2023, gave the NEMOS partners the opportunity to present some practical cases of how this can be done.

The event was opened by Deputy Head of the School of Agronomy and Bioscience at UPNA, Íñigo Virto who stressed the urgency to rethink our food system and highlighted how the NEMOS project can contribute to this change by, instilling sustainability principles in the students’ mindset.

Iosune Cantalejo, professor at UPNA and coordinator of NEMOS offered then an overview of the project, its main goals and the activities undertaken by the consortium so far. These include the definition of a Food Sustainability Profile (FSP) – which identifies the sustainability competences that students should develop throughout their academic path – and the drafting of a Methodological Handbook (MH), as a guidance framework to effectively develop those competences through service-learning. Currently, the project is developing the assessment tools that will be used to validate the FSP and MH.

The seminar continued with the presentation of practical cases from the NEMOS consortium partners, who have been piloting activities to integrate sustainability competences through service-learning.

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