Whether it is protecting the environment, reducing poverty and hunger, or building a more equal society, sustainability is the way to create a better future for all of us.
As a committed proponent of the United Nations’ 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), Quest International University is focused on creating a legacy of positive change in the world, by fostering sustainable development values, principles and practices in society.
The University today organised a webinar titled ‘The Role of Universities in Spearheading Sustainability‘ to further explore how higher education institutions can play their role in the sustainability movement.
The webinar brought together eight distinguished speakers from the realms of government, academia and conservation, who hailed from Malaysia, Japan, the Philippines and the United States.
The keynote speech was delivered by the Minister of Higher Education, Yang Berhormat Datuk Seri Dr Noraini Ibrahim, who applauded QIU for bringing together Malaysian and international universities to discuss how to strengthen their roles in spearheading sustainability:
“Universities are the final gatekeepers that shape the workforce of tomorrow, who need to produce a generation who are aware of sustainable living and its importance to their lives,” said Datuk Seri Dr Noraini.
QIU Vice-Chancellor Prof Zita Mohd Fahmi added: “As an institute of higher education, QIU has a responsibility to integrate sustainability into the education process. Our mission is to implement strategies to drive impactful and sustainable change and to collaborate with all segments of society to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals.”
Today’s webinar was just one of numerous initiatives undertaken by QIU to spread the sustainability message and inculcate the SDG values in our staff, students, and the community.
The University’s activities are spread across four focal points: education, research, operations, and leadership. They include the consistent incorporation of SDG values and topic in our teaching and learning, community outreach programmes, public health campaigns, research, and many more. For more information, visit https://www.qiup.edu.my/qiu-sdg/
Minister of Higher Education, Yang Berhormat Datuk Seri Dr Noraini Ibrahim
|1||YBhg. Tan Sri Dr. Salleh Mohd Nor
Pro Chancellor, Universiti Teknologi Malaysia
Title: The UN SDGs and Role of Universities
Biodata: A forester by profession, Tan Sri Dr Salleh is Pro Chancellor of University Technology Malaysia, Senior Fellow of the Academy of Sciences Malaysia, author of 13 books and winner of the prestigious Merdeka Award among others. Salleh was founder Director General of the Forest Research Institute Malaysia (FRIM) that he developed to be a global leader in tropical forestry research. He was also President of the Malaysian Nature Society (MNS) for 30 years and instrumental in creating Endau Rompin and Belum as National and State parks respectively. He was also President of the International Union of Forestry Research Institutions (IUFRO).
|2||Professor Dr. Nancy Landrum
Quinlan School of Business, Loyola University Chicago, USA
|Title: Sustainability in the Curriculum
Biodata: Nancy E. Landrum, Ph.D. is a Professor of Sustainability Management at Loyola University Chicago’s Quinlan School of Business and Institute of Environmental Sustainability. Dr Landrum is co-author of Sustainable Business: An Executive’s Primer, co-founder of the Sustainable Business Network of Central Arkansas, and Principal at Sustainable Business Design Consulting. She received her Ph.D. from New Mexico State University and has received awards for sustainability research, teaching, and service, including Eco-Hero in the state of Arkansas and a Fulbright grant. Dr Landrum’s interests are in sustainable business practices, biomimicry, strong sustainability, ecological economics, circular economy, sustainability education, and base of the pyramid strategies.
|3||Mr Andrew Sebastian
President, Founder and Chief Executive Officer,
Ecotourism and Conservation Society, Malaysia
|Title: Bridging The Gap of Environmental Awareness
Biodata: Mr Andrew Sebastian is an accomplished naturalist, environmentalist and an established certified professional nature and bird guide for 17 years. Apart from Malaysia, Andrew actively leads tours in the region including Sulawesi, Sumatra & Papua. A law graduate, Andrew has devoted more than two decades in environmental and ecotourism issues through his work with numerous NGOs. He credits his passion for nature to his childhood growing up in the dense forest of the Forest Research Institute of Malaysia (FRIM). Andrew has served and initiated numerous conservation and awareness campaigns which included the landmark protection of the Royal Belum State Park back in 2006. He has also co-founded the Asian Bird Fair Network, which has grown to be one of the largest birdwatching events in the world. He also co-founded the Wild Bird Club of Malaysia (WBCM) and Tangkoko Bird Club, Indonesia. He is attributed as a major influencer in the conversation field and is currently the brand ambassador for Leica. Andrew is the President & CEO of Ecotourism & Conservation Society Malaysia (ECOMY) and is a subject matter expert for Tourism Malaysia for over 10 years now.
|4||Professor Zita Mohd Fahmi
Quest International University Perak, Malaysia
|Title: SDG Practices in Quest International University
Biodata: Professor Zita Mohd Fahmi has served in the public sector for more than 30 years. She previously held the position of Deputy Chief Executive Officer of the Malaysian Qualifications Agency (MQA), and was the Special Advisor for the Association of Quality Assurance Agencies of the Islamic World (QA Islamic). Professor Zita served as a Non-Executive member of the Hong Kong Council for the Accreditation of Academic and Vocational qualifications. She is also the former Secretary of the ASEAN Quality Assurance Network (AQAN).
Professor Zita was among the few pioneer officers in the early operation of the National Accreditation Board, or Lembaga Akreditasi Negara (LAN) when it was established in 1997. Over her years of service, she has been actively involved in setting standards, establishing and reviewing quality assurance mechanisms and capacity building initiatives in quality assurance. She was the co-chair of the technical committee teams who worked towards the successful establishment of the ‘Statement of Confidence’ (SoC) between the MQA and two internationally-recognised quality assurance agencies – the New Zealand Qualifications Authority of New Zealand (NZQA) and the Higher Education Evaluation and Accreditation Council of Taiwan (HEEACT) in 2011.
In recognition of Professor Zita’s outstanding contribution to the promotion of quality and excellence in higher education nationally and internationally, she was awarded the ‘Quality Champions Award’ by the APQN (Asia Pacific Quality Network) in 2014.
Prior to joining LAN, she was a lecturer at the Faculty of Public Administration and Law in Universiti Teknologi MARA (UiTM) and the Dean at the same Faculty. She holds a law degree (LLB) from London University and a Master of Laws (LLM) from King’s College, London University
|5||Associate Professor Dr. Awangku Hassanal Bahar Pengiran Bagul
Head of Tourism Management Program,
Faculty of Business, Economics and Accountancy,
Universiti Malaysia Sabah, Malaysia
|Title: The role of Universiti Malaysia Sabah in spearheading sustainability to local community
Biodata: Dr Awangku Hassanal Bahar Pengiran Bagul is an Associate Professor at Faculty of Business, Economics and Accountancy and a Research Fellow for Borneo Tourism Research Centre at Universiti Malaysia Sabah. He was the founding Director for EcoCampus Management Centre and the founder and current Chief Editor for BIMP-EAGA Journal for Sustainable Tourism Development and Journal for BIMP-EAGA Regional Development. His global sustainability experience came from his involvement in United Nation’s Sustainable Development Solutions Network Malaysia and International Sustainable Campus Network based in Zurich. He was named 50 Most Impactful Social Innovator (Global Listing) by World CSR Day in 2017.
|6||Associate Professor Eng. Erison C. Roque
Chairperson, Chemical Engineering Department
Adamson University, Philippines
|Title: Sustainability Initiatives of select Philippine Universities: How Green can they Go?
Biodata: Erison C. Roque is the current Chairperson and an Associate Professor of the Chemical Engineering Department of Adamson University. He handles foundation and professional courses in the department.
His interest is on Materials Development, Advanced Oxidation Technology (AOT) using nanozerovalent metal and on Alternative Energy sources. He also serves as the Research Coordinator of the College of Engineering.
Erison is also a Climate Reality Leader under the Climate Reality Project of Former US Vice President Al Gore.
|7|| Professor Dr. Kazunori Akutagawa
National Institute of Technology,
Fukushima College, Japan
|Title: Sustainability in Fukushima recovering and Role of Fukushima Kosen
Biodata: Since 2015, Dr Kazunori Akutagawa has served as the vice-president of the National Institute of Technology, Fukushima (hereafter referred to as Fukushima Kosen) and in addition to his duties as a full-time faculty member, Kazunori is responsible for developing and nurturing cooperation between local governments and local industry. Since the 2011 disaster at the Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear power plant, which resulted in many residents evacuating the surrounding areas and entering emergency shelter, the Fukushima prefectural government has been concerned with redeveloping the area through new and innovative projects. One area of focus is on transportation. Starting in November 2011 and finishing in March 2018, Kazunori began a project to link public bus routes with emergency shelters, bus and train stations, retail stores, and hospitals and clinics, allowing the evacuees easier access to these places. Recently, heeding to the request from the Fukushima prefectural government to make the use of hydrogen energy more accessible to daily use, Kazunori has begun working on a Hydrogen Bus Project. The Hydrogen Bus Project brings together members of government, industry, and education to work jointly to encourage and promote the use of hydrogen buses on a local level.