Bishop Grosseteste University (BGU) has become the fourth university in the UK to exclude oil, gas, and mining companies from recruiting on campus. The Lincoln-based university joins the University of Bedfordshire, the University of the Arts London, and Wrexham Glyndwr University, who all ended recruitment ties with the fossil fuel industry in December 2022.
Citing a “commitment to ethical recruitment and environmental sustainability,” BGU has now implemented an Ethical Careers Policy that will prevent the fossil fuel and mining industries from attending careers fairs, advertising role vacancies to students, and sponsoring recruitment events.
It is the latest victory for the student-led Fossil Free Careers campaign, coordinated by the charity People & Planet, which is calling for an end to oil, gas, and mining recruitment at all UK universities. The campaign has gained significant momentum on UK campuses since it was launched in 2021, with fifteen student unions across England, Wales, Scotland and the North of Ireland endorsing the campaign and ending fossil fuel recruitment on their premises. Fossil Free Careers has also received backing from the University and College Union (UCU) and the UK’s largest student body, the National Union of Students (NUS).
The last year has seen a surge of student activity on the issue, with student occupations at the University of Leeds and University of Exeter Penryn, recruitment events by BP disrupted at Oxford, and a wave of university occupations across Europe calling for universities to break ties with the fossil fuel industry.
Fergus Green, Climate Justice Officer at People & Planet said:
‘It is deeply encouraging to see Bishop Grosseteste University demonstrating climate leadership by being the first church-founded university in the UK to end oil, gas and mining recruitment. A clear precedent is being set across the higher education sector, and we hope to see many more Cathedrals Group universities following suit soon. The climate crisis can’t wait, and neither can Fossil Free Careers.’
Emily Allden, Vice-President Education at Bishop Grosseteste Student’s Union said:
‘BGSU welcomes the news of Bishop Grosseteste University implementing its Fossil Free Careers Policy. The Students' Union has enjoyed working with BG Green and supporting the various new initiatives the team has launched, including the Swap Shop and recycling schemes. The introduction of the policy is another positive step towards a sustainable campus, and we look forward to continuing to work with the University to make positive change.’
Allison Webb, Director of External Engagement at Bishop Grosseteste University said:
"We are delighted to announce the implementation of our new careers policy in collaboration with People & Planet, as part of Bishop Grosseteste University's overarching commitment to sustainability. The University remains dedicated to empowering its students to make informed decisions about their professional growth and future careers. By offering fossil-free pathways, we ensure that our graduates have access to opportunities that will contribute to a greener and more sustainable future.”