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Mel Lane Student Grants Project Guidelines

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In honor of environmental leader Mel Lane, the Stanford Woods Institute for the Environment invites undergraduate and graduate students to submit proposals for student-driven-and-managed projects that focus on environmental sustainability in one or more of the following topic areas: climate, ecosystem services and conservation, environmental health, environmental justice and equity, food security, freshwater, oceans, and sustainable development generally. We will also consider other areas within climate and sustainability.

We fund projects that offer a measurable impact on an environmental issue through direct activity - including educational activities - or applied research. Grants typically range from $500 to $1,500 with a maximum of $3,000. Please note that this program does not fund thesis/dissertation research or other academic requirements, unless very applied, for example, to support management decision making. 

Applications are open! Apply by 5pm pst on Friday, December 1, 2023!

Proposed projects should:

  1. Focus on environmental sustainability within one or more of the following areas: climate, ecosystem services and conservation, food security, freshwater, oceans, public health and sustainable development.
  2. Involve a team of Stanford undergraduate and/or graduate students. Ideally, you are sponsored by a recognized ASSU student organization (Energy Club, Students for Sustainable Stanford, etc.), but we encourage all interested groups to apply.
  3. Provide an educational experience for students actively involved in the project and the broader Stanford community.
  4. As a program oriented to supporting impactful projects, your project should engage people.  Please describe how this project will do so, which may mean a communication plan and outreach component, including to the Stanford community.  However, projects need not be confined to Stanford.

Proposals should describe The Problem, Project's Objective(s), Activities and Expected Results and will include the following elements (submit application here):

  1. Project title and concise executive summary of the project.
  2. Name of student group(s) or partner organizations. Ideally, you are sponsored by a recognized ASSU student group, but all are welcome to apply.
  3. List of lead student(s) and project team members, their programs/majors and e-mail addresses. Note the project lead responsible for submitting materials and a final report to Woods.
  4. What is the overall motivating environmental problem for the project? Why is it important?
  5. What are your objectives for a successful project?
  6. Audience for the project. Describe the approximate size of the community you hope to engage and your strategy for engagement.
  7. Description of the activities and implementation plan to achieve the objectives.
  8. Measurable outcomes of the project. For example, what impact will your efforts have on people, places or policy? What skills and knowledge will participants gain? How many educators will use the course materials?
  9. Detailed budget that also includes any cost-share arrangements and plans for raising additional funds. Please use our budget form (save a copy to edit) to complete this item. This must be uploaded as an attachment to your application.

View descriptions of funded projects here.

Final deliverables are due no later than Friday, June 7, 2024 (a final report form will be sent to funded groups at the beginning of May), and should include:

  1. Completed final summary report form describing the problem, objectives, activities, and the outcomes or results achieved.
  2. Revised budget that provides accounting of actual funds spent.
  3. Pictures showing your project in action (high resolution).