Christa, from Sri Lanka, is among the very first graduates of the BA in Sustainable Development. Over the past three years, she acquired essential knowledge related to sustainable development and possible solutions to address social and environmental issues faced by her community.

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“According to my perspective, education is the way to crack a more sustainable and equitable future,” says Christa, among the very first cohort of graduates of the BA in Sustainable Development (accredited by XIM University Bhubaneswar).


Christa comes from Hatton, in the central part of Sri Lanka. Also known as ‘upcountry’, this area is home to communities whose livelihoods are predominantly linked to the tea estates. After completing her schooling, she took English and IT courses, before finding work as an accountant.  All the while, she sought to develop her accounting skills but reached a roadblock, unable to complete her AAT (Association of Accounting Technicians) Level 3 qualification because there were no “knowledgeable teachers for these courses” in her town.


Eventually, Christa joined Loyola Campus in Hatton as an accountant – and that’s when she heard about the BA in Sustainable Development (BA SD). Poverty and hunger are highlighted as the most significant challenges faced by her community, followed by gender inequality, racial and cultural discrimination, waste management, and challenges related to climate change. Along with “essential knowledge about sustainable development and environmental and social issues,” the programme also presented possible solutions.


When faced with challenging topics or assignments, Christa found both the onsite and online learning communities helpful: “I learnt more with the various perspectives of my classmates, sometimes when I could not understand the subject, I read the sharing of my classmates in the discussion forum.”


The experience also strengthened her interpersonal skills and enabled her to engage with peers from different backgrounds. “I learnt various experiences of the students from various cultures, religions, and countries,” she says, highlighting how the discussions helped her gain “a better understanding about the social and environmental issues of the people who are living in different places.”


“This course provided essential knowledge to me to develop my community, develop myself and also transform the world,” she says. Over the past three years, Christa developed an interest in environmental issues and now works as a Management Service Officer at Hatton Dickoya Urban Council, which makes her feel like she’s playing a role in the development of her community as well as caring for the environment.