Campus with a Conscience

Campus with a Conscience

Sunway University’s Campus with a Conscience effort kicked off back in 2021 when the pandemic started to ease, returning to a more recognizable way of life which was somewhat like the life before, only with restrictions. This is now the new normal, as being told over and over again by the media. Who would have thought that it would be possible to live through a global pandemic? It was surreal, like what was seen in the movies and read-only in comic books.

One of the major things learnt in the pandemic was that for a moment when the world stood still, nature came back and flourished – wild animals were spotted in a great many big cities, coming out for a peek at the concrete jungles. More and more households and individuals started to recognize their lifestyle choices were making an impact on the planet; from waste management to time management, self-care, mental health and well-being.

As life on campus started to take shape again, a small number of students started to come back to campus, taking up the opportunity for hybrid and blended learning to restore some balance in their lives. The University recognised the juxtapositions the pandemic has highlighted and decided to do more to make a difference. A task force comprising Branding, University Services, Jeffrey Sachs Centre, Registry and yours truly, got together to form and launch the Campus with a Conscience; a webinar series of focused presentations on sustainability, hosted by Sunway University.

Sunway University is home to the Jeffrey Sachs Centre for Sustainable Development, the newly established Sunway Centre for Planetary Health and the Sustainable Development Solutions Network for Asia, alongside New York and Paris. This heritage makes the university the perfect host for this platform and merits its reputation for nurturing a holistic education and promoting a planetary health mindset within future nation builders. 

The first webinar was launched with a talk and discussion by Professor Agamutu Pariatamby on Sustainable Development specializing in solid and hazardous waste management, followed by highly acclaimed speaker Tan Sri Professor Dr Jemilah Mahmood discussing ‘Why Planetary Health as a Human Rights Issue’.

One of the world’s leading researchers in Chemical Engineering was invited to be the guest speaker; Professor Mohamed Kheireddine Aroua talked about carbon capture for the future, while Datin Mina Cheah-Foong from The Body Shop group talked about sustainable businesses and accountability, and His Excellency Dr Joachim Bergström, the Ambassador of Sweden to Malaysia addressed issues with his talk; ‘No Planet B – A Call to Climate Action’.

What started as a series of webinars has now grown and taken on a life of its own, with the launch of Campus with a Conscience Week back in September 2022, which saw corporate leaders, non-governmental organisations, local school children, special society groups, influencers and over 20,000 students from all across the Klang Valley gathered at Sunway University, Sunway City for a week-long festival of events and activations in support of the United Nations 17 SDGs and its worldwide initiative of Local Action for Global Goals 2022. 

It will be exciting to see where Campus with a Conscience will head in the future, and hopefully inspire more people to aspire to do more good for themselves, their communities and the planet as a whole and be part of the generation that decided to make a difference.


Maslisa Zainuddin 
School of Arts
Email: @email