Change Maker Future Track highlighted at quality conference
When invited to the first ever Lund University Quality conference, Martina Oxling accepted. The conference is a good opportunity to tell people about one of the LUSEM flagships, the Change Maker Future Track. Meet Martina and learn more about the track, and her expectations and goals for the future.
The Lund University Quality conference was given recently at the School of Social Work. Martina was one of three ”inspirational speakers” invited from within Lund University. Her speech was called Hållbar utveckling genom ”wicked problems” – exemplet Change Maker Future Track (Sustainable development through "wicked problems"–the case of Change Maker Future Track).
The purpose of the quality conference in general was to share experiences and good examples of quality work in education at all levels. The conference is also aimed to developing the faculties' internal work and processes, as well as the support for the university-wide quality assurance processes. We met with Martina to get the latest news about Change Maker Future Track and to understand what's in it for the students, coaches and challenge owners*.
What did you talk about in your inspiration speech, Martina?
”I talked about the Change Maker Future Track, how and when it started last year, and that we launched a second round very recently. I described how we have started something without regular credits and what challenges there are in a long-term perspective, with this approach” Martina says.
The presentation at the conference also gave Martina the opportunity to broaden her network with an aim to collaborate with other faculties at LU. At least one other faculty is interested, and Martina is looking forward to a meeting soon.
How the track started
The road to shaping something new is not always, if ever, a straight path. But after getting in contact through a common goal of a more sustainable society, Martina and the responsible teacher of the programme, Stein Kleppestø, started to work together. The issues and questions are many, and complex.
”The foundation of the track is the challenges that companies, organizations and the world are facing. We know what we need to change, but how do we achieve it? How do we do this together? And how can we change quickly enough? It's about building a new mindset, knowledge about systems and leadership. To have an opportunity to act and to be free to experiment in a safe space.
Sustainable Future Hub initiated the first thoughts and created the conditions for starting the track through funding from Sparbanken Skåne and Sparbanksstiftelsen Finn.”
What's in it for the students, challenge owners and coaches?
This year is the second round, and version, of the Change Maker Future Track. Martina and Stein have learned and tweaked a few things from the first version, but the foundation remains the same: creating a space for students to understand the complexity of sustainable development and learning by doing. The challenge owners give the students real challenges and the coaches guide them in their work and inner development. The participating organizations and coaches gain in their turn new ideas, concepts, and contacts. A couple of related voices say:
Josefine Ejlertsson, Sales manager for Oatly in Denmark, and Norway who coached two students:
“When I was asked to participate, it was a given yes from my side. I studied in Lund and graduated 10 years ago from a fantastic master program in technology management led by Stein Kleppestø.“
Karin Ahltin, challenge owner from Sony:
“As partners to LUSEM, we were curious about this new track for sustainable development. I myself have a master's degree in economics, from Uppsala. But back when I studied, there was no discussion at all about sustainability. It is very important to get this into all education as I see it.”
News and goals for the future
One of the things ahead for the Change Maker Future Track project is a possible collaboration with one of the master's programmes at LUSEM. Martina says “What we would like to do most of all is to expand even further and invite students from other faculties and become truly interdisciplinary. That would be a dream. It would lead to a diverse mix of students, and great opportunity to offer more students a real life environment to train their thoughts in. We want the students to understand others as well as themselves, I believe collaboration is key solve these complex issues and create the future that we would like to have.”
* A challenge owner is a representative from an organization with sustainability-related challenges delegated to students at the Change Maker Future Track. The basic idea with the track is to learn by doing, that is why the students get real challenges to handle.