A day in the life of a Master’s in Sustainability Leadership student

Last updated: 8th March 2024

Shaoqian Zhang is Global Head of Safety & Health with Vitesco Technologies Group AG, and a student on the Master's in Sustainability Leadership at The University of Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership (CISL). Shaoqian shares his experience of the programme and details what an average day looks like during one of his residential workshops in Cambridge, UK.

The workshop starts with… lectures from experts, both academics and business professionals. Each session focuses on a specific topic under a core thematic module. The workshop includes ‘student soundbites’ where we listen to the experiences of our fellow classmates and gain insights from their own areas of expertise. The open and genuine nature of these sessions gives us the opportunity to ask and discuss in-depth questions. 

Between sessions we… exchange our opinions and reflections with classmates and lecturers. My fellow students have their own sustainability expertise in a variety of areas including finance, design and technology, and strategy — and from different sectors such as manufacturing, consulting, and investing. The diverse range of insights and opinions I have encountered during the workshop has exponentially expanded my understanding of sustainability challenges and opportunities.

Formal dinner setting at a University of Cambridge College

Once sessions finish we… have time to socialise with classmates, group members and tutors. We have forged friendships during our time together. We experience Cambridge traditions through the formal dinners, galas and events organised by the Institute through the week. Among the many memorable events are Evensong at the King’s College chapel as well as concerts held at other colleges.

I am excited to… make a difference within my company and in a wider context. Every workshop sparks new ideas and solutions to improve our company’s sustainability. The aspirations and passion of my classmates and lecturers continues to motivate me on my sustainability journey.

CISL’s Master’s in Sustainability Leadership is a full Master’s degree, delivered part time for working professionals. Find out more, download the brochure and apply here.

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