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02 October 2018

United Nations selects King's students to help achieve Sustainable Development Goals

The United Nations has selected eight King’s College London students to be part of a prestigious international programme which aims to help make the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) a reality in society.

Photo by Scott Cook
Photo by Scott Cook

The successful students have joined a cohort of undergraduates from across the world as part of the Millennium Fellowship Programme 2018, challenging young leaders to address the global issues affecting their local communities.

Applicants for the programme, run by the United Nations Academic Impact (UNAI) and Millennium Campus Network (MCN), were asked to submit a potential ‘Millennium Fellowship Project’ which showed meaningful impact to society and which supported at least one Sustainable Development Goal and one UN Academic Impact principle. Fellows were selected based on the leadership skills demonstrated in the submitted sustainable development-related projects. Of the 30 universities featured in the final selection, King’s was the only European university to be involved.

King’s students from the Department of International Development and the Dental Institute at the university, Abigail Adcock and Ayla Mahmud, have been assigned as Campus Directors to lead the group through the curriculum which aims to help the students reflect on core values and skills, and take informed action for UN goals.

Amongst those selected was King’s Smile Society, where dental students engage with local primary schools to provide dental care advice and encourage children to look after their teeth.

Megna Shah, a selected Fellow and student in King’s Dental Institute, submitted the Smile Society project. She said:

"I strongly believe the work of Smile Society runs parallel with the MCN values and believe this is a great opportunity to share our work with a larger audience and connect to not only local and national communities, but also globally. “The prospect of collaborating with other societies and organizations is exciting as we will be able to share knowledge and push us to try more innovative practices to reach our goal.”

Megna Shah, a selected Fellow and student in King’s Dental Institute

The Millennium Fellows will ‘take their social impact to the next level’, receive valuable training and grow their networks during the semester-long programme on campus. The programme aligns with King’s commitment to serving local communities, ensuring students develop personally and ethically, as well as intellectually.

President and Principal of King’s College London, Professor Ed Byrne, said:

“We are extremely proud of the cohort of our extraordinary students who have been selected for the Millennium Fellowship. This distinction recognises their exceptional calibre as young leaders and the tremendous scale of their potential genuinely to make the world a better place. We will support the Millennium Fellows in every way we can for them to make the most of this wonderful opportunity, and we congratulate them all most warmly on their achievements, both past and future.”

Professor Ed Byrne, President and Principal of King’s College London