behaviour change education

Accommodating well-being

Deirdre McIntyre is Residential Life Manager at Bangor University.   A geographer with a background in areas of outstanding beauty, waste management, and business development, she is now working to improve the well-being of Bangor’s students.   We talk about encouraging student green movements and think tanks, energy awareness, and waste awareness weeks.   Messaging is key and that means treading a careful line between corporate and fun.

Talking points

Bringing the academic environment into the living environment


Sustainable: The holistic approach to living as a community and to me sustainability at its heart is really about how we educate and develop the students that are living with us, so they leave evolved and prepared for living as citizens of a global community.


Success: Winning multiple sustainability awards over the last few years and engaging with over five thousand students.


Superpower: My ability to enthuse people with my passion for anything I get my teeth into, and

generally dragging anyone along with me.


Activist: Yes, I’m well aware that people never want anything rammed down their throats, and I think that’s why I’m really good at bringing people along with me because the soft persuasion and living your life as an example, that’s how you can be the best activist.  


Motivation: (My four-year-old…) A genuine desire to invigorate other people with my enthusiasm with what I’m doing.


Challenges: Once the dust settles in the department, we can look to a constructive future, I would love to see student engagement and satisfaction featured far more heavily.


Miracle: Make every student positively engage with us at least once.


Advice: Don’t ask for a lighter burden ask for a stronger back


This conversation was made with help of the Sustainability Lab at the Bangor University.

education values

Bringing sustainability to the centre

Bangor University is renown for its approach to sustainability.  And at the heart of that is Dr Einir Young.  She is  Director of Sustainability at Bangor University and runs the The Sustainability Lab.   With initial training in agriculture – “the basis for human survival” – Einir now works with many organisations to find effective solutions to complex ‘sustainability’ issues, focusing on generating prosperity through respecting people and living within the resource boundaries of the planet.    We talk about this, and the impact of the Welsh Wellbeing for Future Generations Act.


Talking points


How people relate to their natural resource base – we’re so pampered.

With you, rather than to you or for you.

Sustainability: Sustainable development is development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs (Brundtland)

Success: Still being here, not just in a corner, instead bringing the issues it into the centre of what’s going on in the university and seeing other people joining in.

Superpower: The power of persuasion, the ability to convey an argument in a persuasive manner.

Motivation: I’m from a very optimistic family and I believe in Wales, I believe that Wales has something to offer the world.

Activist: There are three types of people in the world: people who make things happen, people who watch things happen and people who don’t know what happened. Personally I make things happen.

Challenge: I would like to think that I have left a legacy, being about to retire happily believing that my interests will carry on after I leave.

Miracle: Independence for Wales in a sustainable world, where Welsh language is widely spoken ( at least in Wales )

Advice: Don’t give up, it’s worth the slog.


This conversation was made with help of the Sustainability Lab at the Bangor University.