Green grant applications now online!

The recently opened Shoreline Solar Plaza was partially funded through SCIF.

The recently opened Shoreline Solar Plaza was partially funded through SCIF.

Applications for the Sustainable Campus Initiative Fund (SCIF), the University of Utah’s grant program for sustainability-related campus projects, are now available online! SCIF is undergoing an upgrade. Call it SCIF 2.0. If you’re familiar with SCIF and have visited our website recently, you may have noticed that things are a little different this year. We’ll now be organizing grants according to budget size, with three distinct types of awards:

  • Seed grants (<$1.000): Seed grants are intended for small sustainability projects or programs that need time-critical funding assistance. Applications for these grants will be accepted on a rolling basis, with projects approved and funding transferred within 2-4 weeks of application submissions.
  • Small grants ($1,000 – <$5,000): Applications for small grants will be accepted five times in the 2014-15 academic school year: Oct. 22, Nov. 14, Feb. 13, March 13, and April 10. These grants are ideal for class projects or projects that require little departmental approval (or have already received departmental approvals) to be successfully completed.
  • Large grants (>$5,000): Large grant awards are best suited to projects with a large financial request, high level of complexity, or projects that require extensive departmental approvals to be successfully implemented. First drafts of applications for large grants are due Nov. 21. An optional “expression of interest” is due on Oct. 22.
A student applied for SCIF funds to help pay to bring biomimicry pioneer Janine Benyus to the U in February 2013.

A student applied for SCIF funds to help pay to bring biomimicry pioneer Janine Benyus to the U in February 2013.

Wondering why we made the change? There are a number of reasons, but the main influence has been that a lot of students want to complete a SCIF project as a final class project. With our old system, we were awarding grants at the end of the semester and, in some cases, were not transferring money until finals week (at the earliest). This made it nearly impossible to apply for a grant award and receive money for a project within the same semester. With our new funding schedule, students will be able to submit a small or seed grant application multiple times throughout the semester, and approved projects may receive funding 2-4 weeks following their application submission!

This new set up will allow more of the U community to participate in SCIF. Visit the Apply to SCIF website now to download and complete applications for micro, small, and large grants.

Questions? Comments? Excellent! Visit our website and explore the materials to see if you can find the answer to your questions, then email rachel.sanders@sustainability.utah.edu for further discussion. Because of great projects by students, staff, and faculty, SCIF has become a great tool to improve campus sustainability. Thanks for your help in continuing to grow SCIF into one of the U’s leading grant programs!

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