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Investing in young people - key for the SDGs

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Solution Initiative: Sustainability Coach – a collaboration project with Junior Achievement in Gothenburg and Stockholm, Sweden, connecting university students with young entrepreneurs to support them in developing sustainable business ideas for the SDGs.

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The secretariat of SDSN Northern Europe manage this Solution Initiative, in collaboration with Junior Achievement in Stockholm and Gothenburg, Sweden.

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Contact Linnéa Lundmark, Network Coordinator Northern Europe, linnea.lundmark@sdsnyouth.org

Investing in young people - key for the SDGs

It is no secret that young people are key when it comes to sustainable development. Not only because they will lead our society in the future, but because they possess crucial characteristics for sustainable development – creativity, hope and knowledge. Our young generation is the most well educated in history, but are also facing great unemployment numbers. We need to change business as usual towards a new way of thinking. We must invest in young people to build the right competence and self-esteem required to face the complex challenges of our time.

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Sustainability Coach

"We must invest in young people to build the right competence and self-esteem required to face the complex challenges of our time."

The Solution Initiative Sustainability Coach is a collaboration project with Junior Achievement in Gothenburg and Stockholm, Sweden, connecting university students with young entrepreneurs to support them in developing sustainable business ideas for the SDGs.

During the training, the students gain communication and education skills to coach high-school students undergoing a Junior Achievement Company Program (Ung Företagsamhet). During their entrepreneurship course, the high-school students receive knowledge and advice on how to develop sustainable business ideas that connect to the SDGs from the Sustainability Coaches, using an education kit prepared by SDSN Youth in Northern Europe. This project enables university and high-school students to exchange ideas and knowledge, making it a co-learning experience for both parties.

University of Gothenburg Kimberly Spirito, 23
I study courses within the field of Global Studies, my major is Human Ecology. I also work as a substitute teacher, usually with high school students. I applied to be a Sustainability Coach because I feel that the concept is fantastic, combining academic knowledge of sustainability with the innovative high school students. I am passionate about sustainability and it is also a great opportunity to put my knowledge into practice. I hope to inspire a generation of young entrepreneurs to think about and value sustainability.
University of Gothenburg Tove Andersson, 22
I study a bachelor in Global Studies. I applied to become a Sustainability Coach because I wanted to use my theoretical knowledge from my studies in a practical context, make a positive change, and learn from this process.
KTH Royal Institute of Technology Ahmed Amine Ramdani, 28
I study Electrical Power Engineering. I applied to be a Sustainability Coach because of my interest in building experience to eventually become a Professor.
KTH Royal Instutute of Technology Sally Bohlin, 20
I am studying my third year in mechanical engineering, and will read my masters in sustainable technology. My interest in sustainability and specifically in solving climate change and other environmental challenges goes back several years, and I read, research and engage a lot in the area. Hope to be able to teach as well as learn from the young students and inspire them to make sustainable businesses.
University of Gothenburg Sandra Alm, 25
I am a student at the Masters Program "International Administration and Global Governance". I am interested in solutions to public-good dilemmas, hoping for a better future and I am looking to inspire young students.
University of Gotheburg Christoffer Wisberg, 21
I am studying for a bachelor in global studies and have also studied social anthropology for one year. My interest in global responsibility and how we can live our lives more sustainably got me into global studies, so when I heard about the Sustainability Coach project I thought it was a brilliant way to go about with those kinds of issues. I hope to gain mutual experience and insights about our role in making a more sustainable world.
Stockholm University Klara Nordström, 23
I study the final year in the bachelor "Global Development". I recently came back from a semester in Seoul where I studied International Relations and I have previous experience in communication gained from my work as an informat at Kvinna till Kvinna. I applied to become a Sustainability Coach as I believe that by connecting new business ideas from young students in relation to the SDGs, we can move forward in combating some of todays contemporary issues.
KTH Royal Institute of Technology Amol Yevalkar, 22
I am studying the Masters program in Sustainable Energy Engineering. Sustainable energy being the future, I feel that by being a Sustainability Coach I can share my knowledge and my experiences with others, helping them in tackling certain issues. I am hoping to learn a lot of new things through this experience.
University of Linköping Ecaterina Lorent, 26
I am in my second year of my Master, studying Sustainable Development and have a background in Urban Planning. Over a long time, I fostered interest in how cities work and develop and in the last years, got curious about ways to be more efficient and sustainable at the local level.
The reason I joined the Sustainability Coach team is that I want to help in providing the missing link between the abstract concept of Sustainable Development to general knowledge.
University of Gothenburg Hanna Dahlborg, 27
I applied to become a Sustainability Coach because I believe there is a lot of power in entrepreneurship and business in order to solve the societal challenges, alongside with the politics. I am studying a BA in Political Science with focus on development studies and economics. I have done a Junior Achievement program myself back in the days, and studied Business Management at IHM Business School. I look forward to inspire the students, but indeed also get inspired myself!
Lund University Polina Savchenko, 25
I have studied Ecology and Environmental Protection at National University of “Kyiv-Mohyla Academy” in Kiev, Ukraine, and Environmental Studies and Sustainability Science (LUMES Program) at Lund University.
I am excited to teach young entrepreneurs to think more holistically and to show them the great capacity they have to transform and create both the present and the future of the world we live in!
Volvo Cars Nithin Jose Madassery, 27
As an engineering graduate from Electrical Power Engineering, I have always been interested in developing sustainable and innovative technologies. After working and studying for several years in the field of renewable energy resources, I wanted to take the next step to help and motivate students for which the Sustainability Coach program is the best fit. I am currently working as a Testing engineer with Volvo Cars. I look forward to working with students and be a support for them in their sustainability projects. And I look forward to develop my knowledge as well.
Reach for Change Sweden Jonatan Norman, 25
I am a University of Gothenburg alumni from the School of Global Studies. I have over 10 years of experience of children's and youth's rights and I am currently working with idea generation and community building at the child rights organization Reach for Change. I am passionate about decentralized change and believe in the extreme potential in our younger generations, which is why I applied to become a Sustainability Coach.
KTH Royal Institute of Technology Jean-Baptiste Thomas, 28
My doctoral research involves assessing the sustainability and system’s perspectives of the Seafarm project (Formas, www.seafarm.se), which aims to explore the potential for a new algae-based bio resource industry on the West coast of Sweden. I also am involved in teaching at KTH particularly in sustainability related topics like Industrial Ecology, but not specifically relating to the Sustainable Development Goals. I applied to be a Sustainability Coach because I saw this as a great opportunity to learn more about the SDGs and practise teaching in a new setting (schools), with a new type of audience (pre-university).
Chalmers University of Technology Jackson Malcolm, 26
I am currently studying a Masters of Entrepreneurship and Business Design (majoring in Corporate Entrepreneurship). Earlier studies include a double Bachelors in Business administration and Environmental social sciences majoring in sustainable business. I believe that in order to change for the better, it starts with innovating. Entrepreneurship is a way to make this happen, drive forward development and secure the future ahead. It is probably one of the, if not the most important subjects of our time.
KTH Royal Institute of Technology Veine Haglund, 25
Making a difference. That's why I study to become an engineer and a teacher, and why I engage in sustainability in many different ways.
"Nobody can do everything, but everyone can do something" is just the starting point. I see sustainability as a skill-set, the more you learn the better an impact you can make.
Junior Achievement/UF projects provide perfect opportunities to both learn more and make an immediate impact!
University of Gothenburg Viveka Guzman, 29
I am a master student in the Global Health program. I applied to be a Sustainability Coach because I’m passionate about sustainability issues and believe that the youth is the most powerful actor for a positive change in our societies and our relationship with the environment. For me, this is a unique chance to learn, share and get inspired.
University of Gothenburg Fábio Lopes Paulos, 27
I am Portuguese, but I am also a world citizen. I am currently in Gothenburg doing my Master in Global Studies. I believe our globalized world needs more cooperation. As we are more globally interconnected our societies need to be more tolerant towards our differences and we need to grow sustainable for a greener future. That is why I think it is important to coach young people and help them to understand why the Sustainable Development Goals are so important.
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