Sustainability, Innovation & Engagement Fund (SIEF)

Application: Academic Year 2017/2018 proposal deadline is February 16th 2018 and the application is open.

Established in August 2013, the fund fosters a strong culture of sustainability on our campus by providing financial support to students, faculty, and staff with green ideas. Any student faculty, staff, student group, academic class, or faculty/staff and student team can propose a sustainability project. Campus members will be limited to receiving one grant per year. Submit proposals to the UMass Amherst Sustainability Innovation & Engagement Fund Application here.

2017-18 DEADLINE: February 16, 2018. See below for application details.

Successful Sustainability projects that have been supported by the Fund:

Energy & Water:

  • Eco-Rep Low-flow shower heads in Orchard Hill Residential Area
  • Occupancy Sensors in Isenberg School of Management Classrooms
  • BioSTEAD Mobile Water Catchment System at GardenShare

Waste Reduction & Green Apparel:

Food & Preservation:


The fund accepts proposals for two types of projects:

Type 1: Projects that have a quantifiable economic payback and will refresh the fund over time.
Type 2: Projects that don't have quantifiable payback but engage the campus community in reducing environmental impact or enriching student experience.

Financial Implementation Guidelines have been established by the Budget Office. Please download and review here.

Grants will be awarded based on the following criteria:

  1. ALL proposals must demonstrate how the project will support activities that significantly engage the campus community and improve the sustainability of the institution.
  2. Type 1 project proposals (those with tangible cost savings) must have a payback of five years or less.
  3. Type 2 project proposals (those without tangible cost savings but have a social value) must demonstrate how the project engages the campus community in reducing environmental impact, enriches student experience, adds aesthetic value to campus, creates social equity, or increases environmental awareness and comprehension.
  4. All proposals must demonstrate a long-term value to the University.
  5. No proposal may exceed a quarter of the current value of the total fund. Proposals cannot pay for faculty, staff, or student salaries or wages, or for the purchasing of carbon offsets or off-site renewable energy.
  6. A student designed grading rubric is used to rank the project proposals. Only the top ideas will be proposed for funding. (Resource: Grading Rubric)

Questions about the Sustainability Fund:

Email the Facilities Campus & Services Campus Sustainability Manager or call (413) 545-0799