Green Impact Project Assistants (GIPAs)

What are GIPAs?

Suzanne Cobourne, GIPA of the Year 2012/13, was awarded a bike donated by Professor Tony Ryan, and a day at the annual EAUC conference

Green Impact Project Assistants (GIPAs) are student volunteers who work closely with their assigned team to motivate, support and help them complete their toolkit.

The role is flexible and a GIPA along with their assigned team can decide upon the specific tasks that they will have over the course of the Green Impact programme. This allows both students and staff to get the most out of the placement. Students can learn valuable transferable skills and staff can get a helping hand with the workbook.

Example tasks include organising meetings and delegating projects to different team members; completing workbook criteria; delivering a fresh perspective on planning events and new initiatives; designing posters, or simply assisting as staff carry out the workbook actions.

Tasks for a Green Impact Project Assistant outlines some example activities GIPAs could fulfill.

What do students get from the role?

The GIPA role gives students invaluable experience in environmental policy, awareness and action in the workplace. It gives students an insight into environmental management and volunteers get the opportunity to put into practice their interest in the environment and sustainability in a professional setting.

GIPAs receive training from SOS-UK (part of the NUS) and support throughout their role from the Sustainable Projects Assistant at the University. Volunteers will gain a whole host of skills including project management, leadership, team development and communication – skills which are extremely valuable for future careers.

SOS-UK also offers workshops and online webinars to help develop employability skills.

GIPAs are awarded a certificate when their role ends for all the hard work and achievements they have made over the course of their involvement.

The GIPA role is one of many extra-curricular activities and awards that the University can include in a Higher Education Achievement Report (HEAR); a comprehensive record of your university achievements which recognises extra-curricular achievement as well as academic learning.

Further information about the HEAR requirements for this role is available here.


How much time are students expected to dedicate to the scheme?

The contract asks students to dedicate a minimum of 1 hour a week on average. However, if students feel that they want to dedicate more time, then they can do at their discretion and in agreement with their team.

If you are looking to get the GIPA role on your HEAR, you will need to also attend three additional skills workshops and complete a reflective activity. Find out more about the HEAR requirements for this role here.

Students : How do I apply?

The role will be advertised via email and on Twitter and Facebook at the beginning of the academic year. Please check out the advert to find out how to apply. Students can also download the following documents:

How do departments sign up for a GIPA?

Just contact us – students are hired at the beginning of the programme and after a one-day training session, will be paired with teams who have requested student help.

Here's some other posts you might want to read!