Want to use your degree to change the world? 

Then apply for Green Steps - a transformational sustainability leadership program, equipping Monash students with the skills, tools and knowledge needed to become effective leaders and sustainability change agents.


About Green Steps

Green Steps is an award-winning sustainability leadership program run by Monash Sustainable Development Institute. The program offers innovative and practical sustainability training and consultancy projects for ambitious emerging leaders. Over the past 20 years, the extracurricular program has transformed lives, launched careers and most importantly, created a network of leaders who are now working in organisations to make the world a more sustainable place to live.


Green steps is a fantastic course. I gained a lot of great skills that I look forward to applying, not only in the sustainability context, but also in my life."

Each year we offer 30 fully-funded places to selected Monash University students from across a diverse range of faculties and disciplines. Students gain the skills and knowledge needed to transform attitudes and drive change for a more just, sustainable and resilient world. 

  • Engage in interactive, group-based learning
  • Build your personal and professional leadership capabilities  
  • Practice your skills and develop solutions to real-world sustainability problems
  • Be part of a select cohort of emerging sustainability leaders

Participating in Green Steps has genuinely changed the course of what I plan to pursue in the future."


Please note: Due to current restrictions around face-to-face teaching, we have postponed Green Steps until the end of the year. We are waiting on a directive from Monash University before we announce the rescheduled training dates. With the current resurgence of COVID-19 transmission here in Melbourne, it may be at least 8 weeks before we can do this. Please check this page regularly for updates.

What's involved?

The program involves:

Online sustainability challenge: As part of the application process, you’ll take part in Take One Step, an online platform that challenges you to take an action towards sustainability. Once you've posted a step, we'll also ask you to submit an application form, with a short video of yourself.

Training: Selected students will participate in five days of hands-on sustainability training across two weekends.

Sustainability consultancy project: Following the training, apply for a 20-hour team-based consultancy role undertaking a sustainability-related project at Monash University

What you'll learn

The five-day training is spread over two weeks and draws on teaching expertise and guest speakers from across Monash Sustainable Development Institute, including from ClimateWorksBehaviourWorks and the Oxfam-Monash Partnership.

We'll begin with an overview of global sustainability challenges through the lens of the Sustainable Development Goals, followed by a deeper exploration of two major sustainability issues: climate change and inequality. We'll then look at how sustainability is applied within organisations, and develop your individual leadership capabilities to effectively promote and lead sustainable change.

Content covers:


Sustainability issues and responses – climate change and net zero emissions, poverty and social inequality, consumption and waste, and organisational responses to these issues


Systems thinking and planning interventions – problem mapping, strategic prioritisation and action planning for sustainability in an organisation

Behavioural change and designing interventions – understanding your role as a change agent and personal and organisational drivers, and behavioural change theory and program design

Communication for change – effective communication to foster change within organisations, including constructing coherent arguments, presenting recommendations, stakeholder engagement and presentation skills


Leadership for sustainability – developing interpersonal skills, collaborating across multi-disciplinary teams, building networks and envisioning bold futures

The training component also includes a visit to the site of Monash’s Net Zero Initiative, the University’s ambitious program to have our Australian campuses using 100 per cent renewable power and net zero emissions by 2030.

2020 dates

* Due to COVID-19, Green Steps has

Take One Step Challenge:

Application deadline:

Applicants notified:

Training (5 days):





Consultancy Projects:

been postponed until semester 2. 

From Monday 17 February 2020

Check back for new dates soon.

Check back for new dates soon.

DAY 1: Check back for new dates soon.

DAY 2: 

DAY 3: 

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DAY 5: 

Check back for new dates soon.

* Please note, all training will take place on the Clayton campus

Who should apply

Due to the introductory nature of Green Steps, the program is best suited to students who have little or no knowledge of sustainability. We select students with a diversity of skills and career aspirations because we know that for the world to be truly sustainable, we need leaders and change agents working in all types of organisations and industries. The program is especially designed for those who:

  • Have a passion for the environment, social justice and sustainability regardless of whether they have experience or are studying in this field
  • Are committed to furthering their skills in sustainability and leadership
  • Would like to gain hands-on experience by working on a real consultancy project
  • Want to be part of a growing global network of sustainability change agents

Green Steps is open to all current Monash University students however preference is given to students in their final years of study. The program is run once a year at Monash University (Clayton).

How to apply

STEP ONE: Sign up for the Take One Step challenge and commit to an action to live more sustainably

STEP TWO: Prepare a 60–90 second video presenting three ways you’ll roll out your Take One Step pledge across the University

STEP THREE: Upload your application, complete with resume and video, via the application form before midnight on the application deadline date.


Application tips

Here's a few ways to make your application stand out:

  • Be creative with your Take One Step. We're looking for students (and 'Steps') who think outside the box. Take a look at the Sustainable Development Goals and consider how you might align your action with a social, environmental or economic target or indicator. Please read the Take One Step User Guide to help with creating an account and using the platform.
  • We'll also ask you to submit a video of yourself with your application explaining three actions you would take to implement your ‘step’ or pledge across Monash University. Check out this guide on how to shoot an effective video. When filming your video, make sure you reference your step on Take One Step and explain how it might be implemented as a campaign or set of activities across Monash.

Free. Monash Sustainable Development Institute provides 30 fully-funded places to students at Monash. Applicants must first participate in Take One Step, an online platform inviting participants to commit to a sustainability-related change in their life before they go through the selection process to gain a place on the program.

Learning style

Green Steps training style is unlike any university course. We encourage engagement, collaboration and above all, a fun approach to learning new skills. The training combines critical inquiry and pragmatic tools with insights from sustainability experts and entrepreneurial practice. It’s highly interactive and is focused on teamwork and group discussion. You’ll be learning from our highly experienced trainers, guest speakers and other participants from a range of study areas.

"The style is unlike anything you get in a regular uni class. It is so engaging, respectful, welcoming and informative. I immediately felt comfortable in the group."

The fine print


To apply for Green Steps, you must be available to attend training on all days specified in the listed training dates. It is your responsibility to cancel, swap or take leave from any lectures, tutorials, work and extracurricular commitments during this time. Some preparation is also required between training blocks. Depending on your availability and interest, you may also apply for a sustainability consultancy role with Monash University's Office of Environment and Sustainability.


Repeatedly we hear from alumni that Green Steps is one of the most valuable things they did while they were at university. However it's worth keeping in mind that Green Steps is a challenging program. Firstly, training is intensive, with lots of small group activities and group discussions where you’ll be expected to stretch yourself and contribute as much as possible. Secondly, and most importantly, Green Steps is demanding of your outlook, requiring goodwill and openness to the content, trainers and fellow participants.

Program history

Green Steps was created in 2000 by a group of students who wanted their peers to gain the skills needed to make sustainability-related change in the organisations they will one day work for. Across five days of group-based training sessions, Green Steps gives students practical skills and knowledge which they're then able apply to a multi-disciplinary team based consultancy project.

Our program has been recognised with several prestigious awards, including the Premier's Sustainability Award, the United Nations Association Education Award and the Banksia Environmental Award.

In 2020, Green Steps will mark and celebrate its 20th anniversary with a special event. Please check back for details.

If you have any questions about the program please contact msdi-education@monash.edu.