Interdisciplinary: U-M undergraduate juniors and seniors from schools and colleges across campus explore their interests in sustainability leadership, interact with colleagues and external community partners, and develop transferable professional skills. Students learn to effectively solve complex sustainability challenges.
Up to $4,000: The Graham Sustainability Institute supports the participation of all Graham Scholars in unique field-based opportunities locally and globally.
Collaborative: Scholars collaborate with their team and an external community partner on a sustainability project, participate in co-curricular activities, and join a highly collaborative sustainability community of U-M students and alumni.
Apply Knowledge: Through this program, students have an opportunity to apply knowledge from the depth and breadth of academic courses and sustainability-related majors and minors offered at U-M, and build skills applicable in any workplace.
By nature, sustainability issues are complex, interrelated, and include many disciplines and sectors (e.g. nonprofit, education, government, and business).
The Sustainability Scholars provides a unique opportunity for students to hone skills in leadership, project management, and collaboration with other like-minded undergraduate students across interdisciplinary backgrounds. Students learn how to engage with stakeholders and apply sustainability solutions through team-based projects. Also, students have the freedom to expand and explore their interests in sustainability research and learn about practical solutions to real-world challenges.
The opportunities are designed to prepare students to be successful sustainability leaders in all fields, including but not limited to humanities, architecture and urban planning, art and design, business, education, engineering, information, music and performance management, nursing, pharmacy, public policy, environment and sustainability, and the social sciences.
- Participation in co-curricular activities including the welcome retreat, monthly seminars, and the final symposium.
- Complete an collaborative team project with external community partner.
- Complete a three-credit field-based course focused on sustainability, of the Scholar’s choosing (U-M or other university courses). Scholars receive up to $4000 for travel expenses and/or tuition.
- ENVIRON 391: Sustainability and the Campus, a 4 credit project-based course, or an approved alternative.
Scholars must successfully complete all program requirements to receive funding for field-based experiences and a certificate from the Graham Institute.
Co-curricular activities are designed to engage scholars with one another outside of a classroom environment. These activities include a Welcome Retreat, monthly seminars during the Fall and Winter semester, a final Symposium, and other events.
Students may choose from a wide array of courses hosted in Michigan, the nation, and around the globe. Courses must be sustainability-focused, field-based, and a minimum of three credits. An excellent place to begin exploring is the U-M Center for Global and Intercultural Study.
Students also may work with U-M faculty on an Independent Study project or may register for courses through another institution. These alternative options must be approved by a faculty member or an academic advisor in order to meet the field-based requirement and ensure schools and colleges approve credit for the course. Please allow a minimum of six months to develop and seek approval for an independent study plan, which must be signed by a faculty member and approved by an academic advisor.
For more information and guidance, contact the Education Program Manager.
Students seek approval for field-based courses or course substitutions by contacting the Education Program Manager. Once approved, students can request funding by completing the Graham Funding Request Form. Scholars must successfully complete all program requirements to receive funding for field-based experiences.
Yes, it is possible to study abroad for one semester while participating in the Program in order to complete a field-based course (one of the requirements of the Program). However, students are responsible for ensuring that participation in a study abroad program will not interfere with the completion of the other program requirements by contacting the Graham Education Program Manager to seek approval.
- Students from all U-M Ann Arbor campus schools and colleges are eligible.
- The Program is open to students that have completed three full semesters. Special circumstances apply for students who have transferred or are in non-traditional/junior standing. You must be on track to graduate with at least three full semesters remaining when entering the program.
- The application opens in late February - early March. Applications close by the end of April.
- Students are selected and informed in mid May.
- Participation in the program begins in the fall.
The selection committee includes members of the Graham Sustainability Institute leadership team. Each candidate is reviewed by at least three reviewers.