A core function of the Office of Sustainability is to provide for a more sustainable campus. UTSA Sustainability accomplishes that by funding projects that advance campus sustainability through the university’s Supporting UTSA Sustainability Through Action, Initiatives, and Narratives (SUSTAIN)program. UTSA invests approximately 3% of tuition from scheduled course hours to sustainable initiatives. Funds are used toward projects that support the three pillars of sustainability, where the interconnectedness of economic, social, and conservation come together to create a better tomorrow for our students. Proposals are accepted for sustainable projects from students, staff, and faculty.

UTSA’s SUSTAIN program provides students with the opportunity to evaluate and score SUSTAIN proposals and make recommendations for funding SUSTAIN projects. The SIRC committee consists of 5 students, 2 standing members (UTSA Student Body President and the UTSA SGA Sustainability Representative), and 3 open positions. All SIRC members also represent the student positions of the UTSA Sustainability Council.

SIRC members are required to attend all Sustainability Council Meetings and review proposals throughout the year.

Are you interested in being a SIRC member and a student representative of the Sustainability Council? See information on the Sustainability Council page to apply for open seats or contact the Office of Sustainability at sustainability@utsa.edu.

Applicants are encouraged to make an appointment with the Director of Sustainability at sustainability@utsa.edu at least 30 days prior to submitting your proposal to ensure your project meets the requirements.

Applications are accepted through the Office of Sustainability Rowdylink page. Our page contains a form “Apply to SUSTAIN Funding” for you to upload your proposal. 

https://utsa.campuslabs.com/engage/submitter/form/step/1?Guid=5e203e49-ecb9-4b51-aeb9-66b355376862

Before beginning your proposal, read rules and requirements thoroughly.  Our rules and requirements are also located on the Office of Sustainability Rowdylink news articles “Rules and Requirements for applying for SUSTAIN funding”.

https://rowdylink.utsa.edu/news/245891

Proposal Rules

Proposals are only accepted from current UTSA students, staff, or faculty. Preference is given to proposals that improve the campus built environment. Examples are: hydration stations, waste reduction or innovative recycling, conservation projects that reduce energy or reduce/reuse water, social or cultural initiatives that help to improve campus diversity, inclusion or equity, projects that reduce carbon, or academic programs that result in increased student understanding of sustainability.  Students may apply for up to $1,000.00 in funding for a sustainable program, initiative, or project. Up to $15,000 in student proposals may be accepted annually. All funds must be used by August 31st of the year in which they are awarded. All programs funded through SUSTAIN must acknowledge the UTSA Office of Sustainability funding, in part or in whole, on any publication, poster, or media release of any type.  All expenses and actions will follow university protocols.  Funding for students will follow university protocols as it may have impact to a student’s financial aid. All proposals much have a UTSA staff or faculty member as advisor.  All advisors must have, or establish, a UTSA cost center to receive funds. Proposals must have all required criteria before they are accepted for funding; see scoring criteria. We strongly recommend proposers request a consult with the Director of Sustainability to review proposals for completeness. Student proposals are reviewed and recommended by the Student Initiatives Review Committee (SIRC). Not all proposals meeting the scoring criteria are awarded for funding. The Director or SIRC may reduce or increase award requests at their discretion. Final determination of award is determined at the discretion of the Director of Sustainability.  

Proposal that incorporate economic, environmental, and social sustainability, and are focused specifically on making UTSA more sustainable, are invited to submit a request for funding.

Two types of projects are accepted.

Projects not exceeding $1500 must include:
  1. Narrative: Briefly explain the project. Include detail on how the project is sustainable, a benefit to campus sustainability, and describe milestone and deliverables.
  2. Name and contact for all project leads
  3. Project Advisor: Name and contact for project administrator. Every project must have a current UTSA staff or faculty advisor who will monitor the project from concept to completion.
  4. Account: An advisor must have access to a UTSA 3105 account number.
  5. Cost Estimate: Provide details on how funding will be utilized. Details should be in the project narrative. The Cost Estimate should be in MS EXCEL format broken down by months, showing milestones and deliverables. All funds should be expended not later than August 1st in the year they are awarded.
  6. Timeline: Tell us key milestones and the dates you intend to complete them. Details should be in MS EXCEL format broken down by months and listing milestones and deliverables. All timelines end Aug 31st in the year funding is awarded.
Projects exceeding $1,500 are scored by committee and recommended for funding according to the SUSTAIN SCORING CRITERIA for project over $1,500.  If your proposal is not complete, it will not be accepted. You should read the scoring criteria explanations carefully. Email questions about proposal requirements to sustainability@utsa.edu.  It is highly recommended you contact the Director of Sustainability to review your proposal prior to the submittal deadline. Make sure you give yourself enough time to update your proposal after your review. This process can take up to 3 months depending on the complexity of your proposal.

Proposals requesting more than $1,500 must provide the following information and will be scored by the SIRC committee. Proposals that are recommended for funding are then reviewed by the Director of Sustainability. If you need clarification or assistance with the criteria, please contact the Office of Sustainability at sustainability@utsa.edu for an appointment. We request a minimum of 30 days to meet with applicants. Please ensure you have allotted sufficient time to meet with, and respond to direction from, the Office of Sustainability.

 

SECTION

EXPLANATION

Weight

1.

Narrative

Project description. The narrative must show how the project is sustainable and explain the social, economic, and environmental benefits to the campus. 300 words. Name and contact for all project administrators. Name and contact for the project Advisor (a staff or faculty advisor with a UTSA 3105 cost center).

20

3.

Stakeholder approvals

Identify all applicable stakeholders for your project. Provide an email or scanned signed document from all stakeholders showing they reviewed the project and have determined the project is compliant with rules and requirements of the respective UTSA departments. If it does not comply, proposers must work with the departments to bring their proposal into compliance before submittal.  The signature page must state: The “project name” from “proposer’s name” complies with all university rules under the authority of the “department name”. Signed: __________, title, contact info.  No proposal will be accepted without approval from all stakeholders.  Stakeholders are university department heads, Leadership, or anyone that could/will be impacted by, or have oversight for, the project.  See CONTACTS page for a partial list of stakeholders. It is the proposer’s responsibility to identify stakeholders.  The Office of Sustainability will assist proposers to identify stakeholders during scheduled consultation.

10

4.

Cost Estimate

Provide an outline of how you will use your funding. If the project involves construction, events, movers, electricity, audio visual or any other university function, your cost estimate must be approved by that department in writing. The university does not pay tax on most products and services. Approved contractors and vendors are required. A complete and vetted cost estimate is required before submittal. The Office of Sustainability will assist proposers to identify costs during your consultation. It is the proposer’s responsibility to identify all costs.

10

5.

Return on Investment

Will the project have a return on the investment for the campus? While the benefit may be intangible, most of these points are awarded to projects that result in a financial benefit for UTSA such as energy savings.

30

6.

Timeline

Create a timeline in MS Excel of key deliverables on your project i.e., materials ordered, materials arrive, event date, construction begins, etc. Include start and completion dates. All projects must use funding in the year it is awarded. NOTE: Proposals are accepted for award that propose a project for the next fiscal year depending on availability of funds. 

10

7.

Risk Plan

Proposers are responsible for developing a risk plan. There are numerous examples online. In general, provide a solution for any foreseeable issue with your project. Examples: fire, theft, electrocution, injury, rain, high winds, safety of participants, flood, etc. Detail how organizers will respond, contact information, chain of information to report/respond to the issue, etc. Risk plans must be approved by the UTSA Risk Manager.

20

Not all proposals meeting the scoring criteria are awarded for funding. The Director or the SIR-C may reduce or increase funding requests at their discretion. The final determination of award is determined at the discretion of the Director of Sustainability. The total amount of funding available each year may change. Projects must be completed in the same fiscal year they are funded. For a complete list of rules and important contacts, see SUSTAIN RULES.

Scoring Criteria

 

SECTION 

EXPLANATION 

Weight 

1. 

Narrative 

Give a project description, lists all applicants and the staff or faculty advisor with a UTSA cost center. The narrative must show how the project is sustainable and explain the social, economic, and environmental benefits to the campus. 300 words. 

20 

3. 

Stakeholder approvals 

Identify all applicable stakeholders for your project. Provide an email or scanned signed document from all stakeholders showing they reviewed the project and have determined the project is compliant with rules and requirements of the respective departments. If it does not comply, proposers must work with the departments to bring their proposal into compliance before submittal.  The signature page must state: The “project name” from “proposer’s name” complies with all university rules under the jurisdiction of the “department name”. Signed: __________, title.  No proposal will be accepted without approval from all stakeholders.  Stakeholders are university department heads, Leadership, or anyone that could/will be impacted by, or have oversight for, the project.  See contacts for a partial list of stakeholders. It is the proposer’s responsibility to identify their stakeholders.  The Office of Sustainability will assist proposers to identify stakeholders during your consultation. 

10 

4. 

Cost Estimate 

Provide an outline of how you will use your funding. If the project involves construction, events, movers, electricity, audio visual or any other university function, your cost estimate must be approved by that department in writing. The university does not pay tax on most products and services. Approved contractors and vendors are required. A complete and vetted cost estimate is required before submittal. The Office of Sustainability will assist proposers to identify costs during your consultation. It is the proposer’s responsibility to identify all costs. 

10 

5. 

Return on Investment 

Show how your project will have a return on the investment for the campus or students. While the benefit may be intangible, the majority of these points are awarded to project that result in a financial benefit.  

30 

6. 

Timeline 

Create a timeline in MS Excel of key deliverables on your project i.e. materials ordered, materials arrive, event date, construction begins, etc.  Include start and completion dates. All projects must use funding in the year it is awarded. NOTE: Proposals are accepted for award that propose a project for the next fiscal year depending on availability of funds.   

10 

7. 

Risk Plan 

Proposers are responsible for developing a risk plan. There are numerous examples online. In generalities, provide a solution for any foreseeable issue with your project. Examples: fire, theft, electrocution, injury, rain, strong winds, safety of participants, flood, etc. Detail how organizers will respond, contact information, chain of information to report/respond to the issue, etc.   

20 

 

Stakeholders Contact

Contacts for some potential stakeholders.  This is not a complete list.  

Department 

Phone 

Risk Management 

210-458-7340 

Fire and Life Safety 

210-458-7340 

UTSA Facilities 

210-458-4262 

UTSA Police 

210-458-4242 

Parking 

210-458-7275 

Surplus 

210-458-6272 

Purchasing 

210-458-4060 

Dining 

210-458-7275 

Events 

210-458-4262 

Program Rules

  1. A call for proposals will be released by the Office of Sustainability.
  2. Call for proposals will be advertised on our Rowdylink page “Apply for SUSTAIN Funding” at https://utsa.campuslabs.com/engage/submitter/form/step/1?Guid=77b8715a-c7dc-4d1f-a7e6-bc62c924b517.
  3. Proposals are only accepted from current UTSA students, staff, or faculty.
  4. Preference is given to proposals that improve the campus built environment. Examples are hydration stations, waste reduction or innovative recycling, conservation projects that reduce energy or reduce/reuse water, social or cultural initiatives that help to improve campus diversity, inclusion or equity, projects that reduce carbon, or academic programs that result in increased student understanding of sustainability.
  5. Students may apply for up to $1,500.00 in funding for a sustainable program, initiative, or project.
  6. Up to $10,000 in student proposals may be accepted annually.
  7. Students may co-propose on grants over $1,500 that are co-administrated with a faculty or staff member.
  8. All funded projects must be completed in the year they are awarded.
  9. Funding for proposal is dependent upon available funds in the program. Complex projects that might take a long time to develop may request funding for future fiscal years. However, due to the possibility of unforeseen issues, such as a worldwide pandemic, funding may not be guaranteed.
  10. Call for Proposals will be released annually in the Fall semester. It is possible the SUSTAIN program may have a second request for proposals during the year.
  11. Funding may not be used for food, drinks, or gift cards.
  12. SUSTAIN funds must be used by August 31st of the year in which they are awarded.
  13. All programs funded through SUSTAIN must acknowledge the source of funding on media releases, poster, research papers, and publications: the UTSA Office of Sustainability funding, in part or in whole, on any publication, poster, or media release of any type.
  14. All proposals much have a UTSA staff or faculty member as advisor. All advisors must have, or establish, a UTSA cost center to receive funds.
 
  1. Proposals must contain all required criteria before they are accepted for funding; see scoring criteria. We strongly recommend proposers request a consult with the Director of Sustainability to review proposals for completeness. Incomplete proposals may be denied.
  2. Student proposals are reviewed and recommended by the Student Initiatives Review Committee (SIRC).
  3. Not all proposals meeting the scoring criteria are awarded for funding.
  4. The Director or SIRC may reduce or increase award requests at their discretion.
  5. No funding will be provided directly to students.
  6. Funding must be transferred to a UTSA department with a 3105 account
  7. The final determination of award is determined at the discretion of the Director of Sustainability.
  8. All expenses and actions will follow university protocols.
  9. Funding for students will follow university protocols as it may have an impact on a student’s financial aid.
  10. We strongly recommend proposers request a consult with the Director of Sustainability to review proposals for completeness.
  11. Student proposals are reviewed and recommended by the Student Initiatives Review Committee (SIRC).
  12. Not all proposals meeting the scoring criteria are awarded for funding.
  13. Submitting Proposals will be submitted electronically to the Office of Sustainability at sustainability@utsa.edu :
  • PDF format.
  • Proposal Titles must have the PROJECT NAME and POINT PERSONS NAME as the document title.
  • Subject line of the proposal email will be SUSTAIN RFP (year of RFP e.g., SUSTAIN RFP 2016) and the Proposal Title.