York St John awarded the Social Enterprise Gold Mark

Published: 9/06/2016

York St John has been awarded the internationally recognised Social Enterprise Gold Mark which reflects the University’s commitment to social enterprise excellence.

It is one of only two UK universities to have achieved the gold accreditation and reflects the way the institution works in terms of governance, business ethics and financial transparency. The gold mark also demonstrates York St John’s commitment to the wider social impacts of its work within the community and how it makes a difference.

The Social Enterprise Mark independently guarantees that a business operates with the central aim of using income and profits to maximise positive social and/or environmental impact, which takes precedence over a requirement to maximise personal profits for owners and shareholders.

Applicants must meet sector agreed qualification criteria in order to be awarded the Social Enterprise Mark, and are re-assessed each year to ensure they continue to meet the criteria.

York St John’s report to accompany the accreditation recognised that York St John “has a keen social purpose that extends well beyond those primary educational objectives the University serves.”

It also stated that the University is “committed to best practice on a variety of levels relevant to both ethical and good business practice beyond that which may be specifically required by the Higher Educations sector.”

Lucy Findlay, MD of Social Enterprise Mark CIC, said: "We are delighted to award the Social Enterprise Gold Mark to York St John University; only the second university to have achieved this challenging social enterprise accreditation. The university is clearly committed to providing a great student experience for learners from all different backgrounds.  The management team and staff also share a very strong sense of social purpose.

"We were impressed with the university's commitment to achieving best practice beyond that which may be specifically required by the Higher Education sector, including how well people are treated and managed. Promotion of equality and diversity throughout the institution was seen as a standout strength. Well done to all concerned"

Professor Karen Stanton, Vice Chancellor, said: “York St John University is delighted and honoured to have been awarded the Social Enterprise Gold Mark. This much-coveted accreditation is only given to those organisations who can demonstrate they are making a real difference to their community and the environment.

"We are one of only a few universities in the UK to have achieved this status and I am deeply grateful that the hard work and dedication of the York St John teams involved have been recognised in such a positive way.”

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