Funding

As part of the university-wide focus on sustainability, competitive funding is available to use our campus as a "living-learning lab for sustainability," with mechanisms to fund both large-scale and small-scale project ideas.  Competitive funding is also available to pursue applied sustainability projects beyond the U-M campus.   

  • Planet Blue Student Innovation Fund (PBSIF) grants: The Student Sustainability Coalition provides up to $50,000 annually for ambitious, student-initiated projects that reduce the university’s environmental footprint and promote a culture of sustainability on campus. Priority is given to projects that are innovative, visible, and transformative. Other criteria include factors such as student involvement, economic payback, and partnerships facilitated within the U-M community. Many successful campus sustainability initiatives received initial funding from PBSIF including the U-M Campus Farm, the Maize and Blue Cupboard, and the solar picnic tables near Palmer Commons and the Grove.

  • Dow Distinguished Awards: Under the auspices of the Dow Sustainability Fellows Program, this student team competition focuses on applied sustainability projects beyond the campus that cut across disciplines and academic levels.
  • Sustainability Catalyst Grants provide U-M PI-eligible faculty with up to $10,000 over eight months for engaged research efforts addressing any aspect of sustainability. These grants can be used either to plan/pilot larger collaborative research projects or to translate existing research for real-world application. Past projects have covered a broad range of sustainability-related issues.

  • Social and Environmental Sustainability (SES) grants: The Student Sustainability Coalition provides up to $2,500 in support of projects that advance DEI&J-focused sustainability on campus, including special events. Applications are accepted anytime and evaluated on a rolling basis.

  • Mini-Grants for Food Justice: The U-M Sustainable Food Program offers grants of up to $2,500 for student organizations to bring to life innovative visions for food justice. Priority is given to UMSFP member groups. UMSFP will assist in the accomplishment of the grant project in any way that is possible and desired, and welcomes opportunities for collaboration beyond the scope of the project.

  • Planet Blue Renewable Energy Demonstration Project (PBREDP):  PBREDP makes funding available for the design and implementation of demonstration-scale renewable energy projects on campus. The aim of the PBREDP is to increase awareness and familiarity with renewable energy technology by incorporating it into daily campus life.