Deadline for applications is Jan. 20
The Institute for Sustainable Solution encourages sustainable research and development at Portland State University through its 2012 Solutions Generator student grant program.
The program, which began in 2010 and is now in its third year, challenges groups of Portland State students to design and carry out proposals that would make the campus and nearby areas more sustainable—anything from organizing an event to raise awareness about sustainability to creating a green space on campus to conducting an audit to find areas of ecological waste and suggest potential improvements.
Up to 10 student groups will be selected to receive a $1,500 grant to pursue implementation of their proposals as well as a $1,000 leadership award applied to each student’s PSU account.
These awards are funded by part of the James F. and Marion L. Miller Foundation challenge grant, a $25 million award given to Portland State in 2008 to reinforce Portland’s stance on the importance of furthering sustainability into the future.
In 2011, the Solutions Generator program received 30 applications and funded 12 groups that tackled an array of research and challenges on issues regarding sustainability. One group worked together to create an outdoor classroom at the Wealth Underground Farm, a location 15 minutes outside of campus that would allow students to gain hands-on experience while maintaining the same facilities of a Portland State classroom. The classroom itself was designed to incorporate solar power as its primary energy source, furthering the ideal of sustainable research. Another student group organized the Earth Day Festival that was seen on campus in April 2011, raising awareness and garnering support for other sustainability programs.
“[These projects] are not a one-off effort, but something that contributes to Portland State’s sustainability year-to-year,” said Jenny DuVander, communications director for the institute.
As of Jan. 10, more than 50 students have attended information sessions hosted by the ISS, implying a healthy level of interest in the program, and will hopefully lead to a number of inventive and competitive proposals for the 2012 cycle.
Once projects are selected and the awards disbursed after the Jan. 20 deadline, they will be conducted through May 2012, when the students will present their efforts at the Sustainability Celebration on May 29 in the Native American Center. This annual event provides an opportunity for the various sustainability groups across campus, including student groups, academic circles and institutes such as the ISS to look back on the accomplishments of the past year and identify areas of further growth. The recipients of the grants will present their progress with the hope of showing work that can be built on and improved in future years.
Further information on the project and details on how to submit a proposal can be found online at pdx.edu/sustainability/2012-solutions-generator.