Sustainability, Innovation & Engagement Fund (SIEF)

2021 UPDATE: Due to low remaining balance and COVID campus-closure we were unable to put a call out for SIEF submissions this year. 

After fund allocation to the projects from the 2019-2020 academic year, SIEF had a roughly $12.6K remaining balance. 

On 2/8/21, the Chancellors Sustainability Advisory Council (CSAC) authorized the usage of these remaining funds for two campus projects during spring '21:

1) emergency funding for the Waste and Recycling Sub-Committee led by Residential Life to communicate the new campus waste guidelines and increase the recycling rates in the residence halls as all campus dining has become take-out and caused waste issues in Residential Life.

2) The 'Transforming Crisis: Art, Science & Activism' environmental art partnership with the Fine Arts Center and MFA

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.


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
  • ​SHALIA Bioplastic and Affordable Water Filter
  • Enhancing the Functionality of the Franklin Permaculture Garden Rainwater Catchment System
  • Water Metering in Showers
  • Wetland 52

Waste Reduction & Green Apparel:

Food & Preservation:

Arts & Humanities


Student Engagement:

  • Sustainathon 2020

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