How an ESG degree in the metaverse helped me become EY’s global sustainability exec

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    The city is an early adopter of the Metaverse, with some of the largest banks, wealth management firms and law firms offering real estate in a virtual reality environment.

    EY is one of the companies that has stepped in. But now, the company has discovered a new purpose for the Metaverse: retraining employees to become sustainability experts.

    This process, known as ESG upskilling, began in recent years as demand for professionals with green skills increased as the net-zero transition forced companies to meet stricter climate change reporting requirements.

    According to a PwC study, The number of green jobs advertised in the UK has tripled In July 2022, the number increased from 124,600 in the previous year to 336,805. By 2050, the National Grid will: 400,000 job opportunities in the energy sector alone Due to net zero migration.

    However, there are not enough workers dedicated to sustainability and businesses are facing a green skills gap.

    Amy Brachio, Vice Chairman of EY Global Sustainability, said: financial news The Big 4 have been able to achieve this goal by having a small team of sustainability experts to help clients set goals and measure emissions. But now their demands are becoming more complex, requiring a certain degree of climate literacy from EY employees.

    “Sustainability is now an all-encompassing expectation to meet client ambitions. When asked to help companies transform, they are asked about both financial and non-financial reporting data. she said. ”

    Amy Brachio, Vice Chairman, EY Global Sustainability

    “When I talk to other sustainability leaders, they face exactly the same challenges. How do I give my team members the knowledge they need?”

    When asked to take on a second role in April 2022, Brachio realized he lacked education on key environmental issues facing EY clients and decided to pursue a master’s degree in sustainability. I was.

    EY announced in February 2022 that it will open a Master’s Degree in Sustainability at Hult International Business School, based in Cambridge, Massachusetts. The program is free and available to all of his 312,000 employees worldwide.

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    An initial group of 19 EY employees, including Brachio, have completed the course, addressing issues such as climate change, its implications for entrepreneurship and how to apply ESG principles.

    They hail from 11 countries including the UK, US, Germany, Australia and Hong Kong and are at various stages of their careers. Their backgrounds range from traditional financial accounting to supply chain.

    Brachio and his colleagues received their fully accredited degrees at a virtual graduation ceremony held in the Metaverse on June 27th.

    “My family makes fun of me because my oldest son just graduated from New York University and they want me to wear her hat and gown to the ceremony,” said Brachio. FN one week before the ceremony. “I politely declined.”

    Classes were also conducted in the Metaverse, allowing Boston-based Professor Hart to teach in real time.

    Brachio, who had to figure out how to use avatars and the “raise hand” feature, said returning to a classroom environment rather than a virtual one was a “humbling experience.”

    “It’s been a long time since I’ve been graded,” she said, adding that working remotely during the pandemic has made it easier to accommodate virtual learning.

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    Based in Minnesota, Mr. Brachio has been with EY for his entire 25-year career. During that time, she has advised global corporate boards on risk and regulatory issues, and most recently on diversity, equity and inclusion issues. On 1 July, she will be promoted to EY Global Sustainability Vice Chairman.

    But not all of her alumni are on their way to earning their sustainability professional badge again. Many want to incorporate sustainability into more activities while maintaining their specialties, she says.

    Looking ahead, Brachio anticipates that employers will come under pressure to provide upskilling opportunities on ESG and sustainability if they want to attract and retain talent.

    “We have found that our employees are most looking for opportunities to upskill on sustainability,” she said.

    “This is necessary both in the way we work and in the way we serve our clients, but it is also a very important factor in attracting and retaining top talent in the market. And it goes beyond professional service. I think it also applies to

    To contact the author of this article with feedback or news, please email Kristen McGachey


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