The Team

The sustainability team at NUS drives our work across campuses, curriculums and communities. If you want to talk about how we can help you drive sustainability across your campus or organisation, just get in touch. Check out our structure here

Or read on to find out a little bit more about us, and what everybody does, and get in touch with someone individually.

Jamie Agombar
Head of sustainability

Over his twelve years at NUS, Jamie has helped develop a strong student voice on sustainability, embedding sustainability into the work of NUS and the students’ union movement.

During his tenure, NUS’ sustainability function has grown from a single role to 20 full-time dedicated sustainability staff, and over 30 in students’ unions. This growth has been through the development of successful and impactful sustainability change projects, such as Green Impact, Student Switch Off, Student Eats, and Responsible Futures, which are now collectively delivered into 100 universities and colleges, reaching more than 250,000 students each year.

Jamie sits on many external committees, including the Higher Education Funding Council for England Leadership, Governance and Management Strategic Advisory Committee, IEMA’s Strategic Advisory Council, and the EAUC Board.

In February 2014 Jamie won the Guardian University Award for Inspiring Leadership for his decade of service at NUS.

 

Charlotte Bonner
Communities programmes manager

Charlotte has been part of the Green Impact team since she joined NUS in February 2010 before which she worked as a consultant specialising in campaigns and behaviour change as well as environmental management.

She now heads up the Green Impact team, providing students and students’ unions opportunities to engage staff and students in sustainability both on campus and in their local communities. She also supports students’ unions in their community and out-reach work and heads up the education for sustainability and internationalism agendas within the department. 

Charlotte sits on the Sustainable Schools Alliance Board, the Copernicus Alliance Board and the Foundation for Environmental Education’s Eco-Campus Working Group. She is co-chair of the ACUI Sustainability Community of Practice.

In both her personal and professional lives, Charlotte is known for her love of cakes, pub quizzes and her many bicycles. She speaks French (or at least tries to), and works from home on the North Yorkshire coast. 

 

Laura Clayson
Divest-invest consultant

Laura joined NUS after being president of Lancaster University Students' Union, to support our work on divestment and reinvestment.

She issued 800 freedom of information requests across higher and further education, finding out what our education sector is investing in, and what financial interests the fossil fuel industry has in our universities and colleges. Her work forms the basis of our campaign to encourage our institutions to pull their money out of fossil fuels, and invest in the clean alternatives.

Outside of work Laura enjoys a vast array of activities - if she can't be found hula hooping or juggling with flower sticks, then you'll probably find her exploring London or watching a documentary - she is somewhat of a shark, dinosaur and whale fanatic. She has a BA in Politics and International Relations and is especially interested in exploring the intersections between the oppression of people and the environment. 

 

Laura Cristea
Sustainability project officer

Laura helps to deliver Green Impact and Student Switch Off to institutions across Scotland, hoping to develop better partnerships between institutions up North encouraging sustainable behaviours amongst students and staff.

Before working for NUS, Laura graduated from the University of Aberdeen with a degree in Economics and had various positions in energy conservation, project managing various environmental initiatives in the North East of Scotland and even became an officer at her own Students’ Association leading on social responsibility and environmental campaigns. 

Laura’s pretty passionate about people and developing volunteers to bring out the best in them, and in her spare time volunteers with a food rescue project and goes riding on her trusty bike on nature paths. 


Insight manager - sustainability

Rachel has worked in sustainability-focused research roles for the past six years, joining NUS in 2011.  Rachel forms part of the research department, working closely with the sustainability team.

She has previously worked for research and strategy consultancy Brook Lyndhurst and Green Alliance.  Here she worked on projects for a range of public sector clients across a range of different issues, utilising quantitative and qualitative skills to investigate community action on climate change, evaluating behaviour change and developing pilots to promote energy efficiency. 

Rachel studied Geography at Durham and has a Masters in Environment, Science and Society from UCL. In her spare time, Rachel enjoys experimenting in the kitchen (which mostly works out!), complemented by keeping active by running, rowing or cycling.

 

Michelle Farrell
Sustainability project officer

Michelle is a Project Officer, responsible for delivering Green Impact and Student Switch Off programmes in a number of universities and community organisations.

Due to her personal interest in sustainability and the arts, Michelle is helping to develop our work in this area.Michelle joined the team in 2013. Prior to this she worked in a number different roles within the sustainability sector, including a spell in The University of Birmingham’s Environment Department. Michelle studied at the University of York, achieving a BSc in Environmental Science. During this time she was an active member of her SU, and was elected E&E Officer for her college.

Michelle also has a keen interest in music, and in her spare time runs a not-for-profit organisation, arranging music events to provide exposure for new artists across the UK.

 

Katie Ferneyhough
Sustainability project officer

Katie works as one of the sustainability project officers delivering the Green Impact and Student Switch Off programmes across institutions mainly in the north of England. 

She also helps students' unions to deliver Blackout events, as well as working with off-campus Green Impact programmes. 

Before working for NUS, Katie managed one of the NUS students' Green Fund projects at Staffordshire SU – GreenPad – which focused on creating energy efficient student homes as well as delivering various sustainability programmes and events across the institution. Before that position she graduated from Liverpool University with a Zoology degree and a Masters in Conservation & Resource management. 

Out of work, Katie enjoys being in the outdoors, spending lots of time with her own little family farm of rescue animals and cooking/baking lots of amazing vegan food!

 

Sophie Hemery
Sustainability communications coordinator

Sophie Hemery
Sophie leads on all the communications for NUS' sustainability work.

Working across projects from behaviour change to curriculum reform to political activism, she ensures that our vision is communicated to a range of audiences, and integrates sustainability work across the rest of NUS' campaigning priorities. 

She likes: learning about new ideas, places and people (or learning new things, about old ideas, places and people); writing and reading constructive journalism; campaigning to make things better; and emapthy.

 

Lucy-Ann Henry
Alcohol Impact Programme Manager

Lucy is the Alcohol Impact Programme Manager based in the London office. Her role focuses on managing the programme operationally, supporting students’ unions and their partner institutions on campuses across the UK to embed social norms of responsible drinking.

Lucy has a background in criminology, sociology, community development and youth work. Before NUS she worked for a psychological wellbeing service delivering cognitive behavioural interventions to people with mental health problems.

Lucy likes watching documentaries, eating, travelling, exploring new places, and avoiding the rain!

 

Neil Jennings
Programme manager - Student Switch Off

Neil is the founder and Programme Manager of the Ashden Award-winning Student Switch Off campaign - encouraging students to save energy and recycle when living in halls of residence.

While undertaking his PhD at the Tyndall Centre for Climate Change Research (University of East Anglia), Neil set up the Student Switch Off to try and encourage other students to reduce their impact on climate change. Since 2006 the campaign has expanded to run at over 40 universities across five countries and recently passed the £1.5 million mark in electricity saved by students adopting energy-saving behaviours!

Neil sits on the End Fuel Poverty Coalition and Community Energy Coalition and outside of work for NUS is the Managing Editor of the academic journal Global Environmental Change.

In his spare time Neil represents his local athletics and football clubs and loves growing food in his garden – though typically ends up with more marrows than courgettes!

 

Katie Jepson
Sustainability project officer

Katie helps to deliver Green Impact, Blackout and Student Switch Off to institutions across England and Northern Ireland encouraging sustainable behaviors amongst students and staff.

Before working for NUS, Katie graduated from Keele University with a BA Geography degree. Previously she worked at The Conservation Volunteers as a Project Officer on their Health for Life programme, where she project managed and helped build food growing community gardens in Birmingham, working to create healthier and happier communities.

In her spare time, Katie likes going to spin classes, hiking and cooking.

 

Jo Kemp
Green Impact programme manager

Jo manages Green Impact nationally, working with staff and students to constantly evolve the programme across our existing and potential educational and community organisations. Jo heads up the team to help deliver Green Impact in line with NUS’s wider strategy and aims for students' unions to become hubs for sustainability within their institutions and communities.

Before joining NUS in 2011, Jo spent 3 years leading the education sector work at Change Agents UK. She recently took a year out from NUS’s sustainability work to deliver the national engagement project ‘Discovering Britain’ at the Royal Geographical Society (with IBG), where she devised, trialled and published geographical walks across the UK.

From her base in Lincolnshire, Jo chairs her local Fair Trade campaign group, and has set up and manages a real Junk Food Project pay-as-you-feel community café. In her spare time she enjoys a good pub quiz, camping and walking with her dog, and always has a renovation project on the go.

 

Ágnes Knoll
Programme manager - Student Eats

Ágnes has been in charge of Student Eats since she joined NUS in 2012. The programme is assisting students in growing their own food on campus, including setting up gardens and growing societies, creating growing plans and widening community involvement. She heads up the Student Eats team in delivering a new Big Lottery funded project, setting up student-led sustainable food enterprises in partnership with the Soil Association, Sustain and the Plunkett Foundation.

Ágnes took her second MSc with the University of Manchester in Environmental Science and Policy, but she started life as a biochemist. She has been running vegetable and fruit growing schemes, and managed landscaping and education projects with local community involvement. Her work has won a dozen awards, including prestigious RHS Chelsea Flower Show medals.

When not growing, she most enjoys seeing wildflowers and the creatures they attract, while rambling on hills, vales, downs, or along the coast.


 

Jade Monroe
Senior project officer - Student Switch Off

Jade has worked as part of the Student Switch Off team for a number of years.

As the project has expanded, Jade has come to manage a number of project managers delivering the campaign in halls across the UK - helping students get into positive energy habits during their first year of university.
 

Jessica Naylor
Sustainability project officer

Jessica' role is sustainability project officer and is responsible for delivering Green Impact and Student Switch Off in numerous universities and organisations.  

Before joining NUS, Jess worked at the University of Sheffield as a sustainable behaviour assistant where her work focussed mainly on running Green Impact along with other environmental and behaviour change work.  

Before this, Jessica's first role in the sustainability sector was an internship at Forum for the Future where she worked on an edition of Green Futures magazine, undertaking research and writing for the magazine. Prior to that, she studied History at University and worked in a museum in Krakow. 

Outside of work, Jessica enjoys going hiking or on really long walks, exploring London and going to different galleries and museums as well as reading a lot.

 

Joanna Romanowicz
International programmes manager

Joanna is London based and has been working for NUS since October 2010. In her role she has managed a number of European projects, and currently is leading on the Horizon 2020 funded European expansion of Student Switch Off (SAVES2). Through this she works with universities in Cyprus, Greece, Lithuania, Bulgaria, Romania, Ireland and UK to help drive positive environmental behavior amongst students and raise awareness around energy efficiency and smart metering, in the context of fuel poverty.

Prior to working at NUS, Joanna worked in the sustainability team at the University of Westminster as Greener Living Assistant and later Sustainability Officer. Joanna has an experience of working in different sectors in an environmental role, including work at the London School of Economics, Greater London Authority, Forum for the Future, AECOM and other environmental consultancies.

Joanna has a degree in Human Sciences from the University of Oxford and a Masters in Environment, Science and Society from UCL. In her spare time, Joanna enjoys hiking and camping, discovering new places, playing netball, yoga, keeping up her French and playing tennis.

 

Quinn Runkle
Education for sustainable development programme manager

Quinn is the Education for Sustainable Development (ESD) Programme Manager and is based in our London office. Her role includes managing the Responsible Futures programme; supporting universities, colleges, and students’ unions to embed ESD throughout the formal and informal curricula; and working across the student movement and with partner organisations to improve the inclusion of sustainability knowledge, skills, and attributes in education across the UK and internationally.

Prior to working at NUS, Quinn managed the Student Green Fund Project at the University of Bristol Students’ Union and delivered student sustainability engagement programmes at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, Canada.

Quinn holds a BA in Geography and Political Science with a concentration in Sustainability from the University of British Columbia. In her spare time, she enjoys board games (mostly Scrabble!), running, and eating veggie food. 

 

Rachel Soper
Sustainability project officer

Rachel joined the team in 2014 as a Sustainability Project Officer and is responsible for delivering Student Switch Off and Green Impact to 7 universities across the country, engaging staff and students in the projects.

She is a recent graduate from the University of York with a BSc in Environmental Economics and Environmental Management. During her time at York Rachel was heavily involved with Student Switch Off and Green Impact as well as a number of other environmental projects and the Union’s Cocktail Society!

Rachel spends a lot of her free time upcycling clothes and has a particular penchant for tie-dye. When her hands aren’t stained a funny colour Rachel also likes going to concerts and music festivals.

 

Jen Strong
Senior project officer - Green Impact

Jen is a sustainability project officer delivering Green Impact and Student Switch Off, and is based at the NUS Macclesfield office. She can be found visiting universities, hospitals and local authorities across the country supporting them to make their Green Impact involvement bigger and better than before or helping them through the first steps of implementing an environmental behaviour change initiative.

Jen first got involved in Green Impact as the Sustainable Behaviour Assistant at Manchester Metropolitan University. Following this she moved to Nottingham where she number crunched her way through carbon accounting reports for NHS clients, as well as coordinating sustainable procurement training and support during her time at the Nottingham Energy Partnership, a charity and social enterprise based in the East Midlands.

Jen also has experience in teaching English as a foreign language as well as providing environmental support within the civil engineering sector. Jen is a graduate of LSE where she studied Environmental Policy with Economics, is an associate member of IEMA and enjoys spending her spare time being crafty sewing and knitting homemade things for friends and family.

 

Odette Wills
Student Eats project officer (job share) / Sustainability project officer (Wales)

Odette is the Welsh sustainability Project Officer based in the Cardiff office. Her role focuses on delivering Green Impact and Student Switch Off across Welsh (and some English) universities, and she also works with other organisations and NGOs to further the sustainability agenda in Wales.

Before starting at NUS, Odette worked in a science lab looking at a fungus to help farming. She has completed a degree in ‘Conservation Biology and Ecology’ and a masters in ‘Food Security and Sustainable Agriculture’. While at university, Odette ran many campaigns often focusing on sustainable fishing and local food, and was also involved with an NUS Student Eats scheme called Exeter Community garden; a staff, student and community growing project based at Exeter University.

While not at work, Odette can be found walking with her dog, cycling the Welsh hills, on her allotment or cooking. She also has her own business running a bike repair workshop called Bike Anatomy with her partner!