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As investors pay more attention to sustainability, universities are developing programs to train the next cohort of financial professionals.

The University of Waterloo, based in Waterloo, Ont., is launching a Sustainability and Financial Management program in September 2022 that will bring together experts from its finance and environment departments.

“This program is designed to fill the talent gap of sustainability leaders who have the expertise to quantify, report and integrate sustainability considerations — natural system and social — into the firm’s long-term business strategy and decision-making process,”  said Blake Phillips, deputy director of Waterloo’s accounting and finance school, in a statement.

The interdisciplinary program will mix accounting and financial management with environmental law, social equality and ecosystem science, the university said in a release.

Credits for the co-operative learning program will also count toward Chartered Financial Analyst and Chartered Professional Accountant accreditation.

“Sustainable finance may seem like a new concept for some, but almost overnight we’ve seen an explosion in demand for professionals with this kind of experience,” said Jean Andrey, dean of Waterloo’s environment faculty, in the release. “Our graduates will be among the first to apply a new standard of measuring success in a way that protects the planet and its people.”