Sustainable Village gets $40,000 Verizon grant

Kaz Alvarez/Sun Star Reporter
Oct. 21, 2013

Tamarack House located in the UAF Sustainable Village on Sunday, Oct. 20, 2013. Annie Bartholomew/Sun Star

Tamarack House located in the UAF Sustainable Village on Sunday, Oct. 20, 2013. Annie Bartholomew/Sun Star

A $40,000 grant from the Verizon Foundation to the Sustainable Village was announced September 26 to develop an mobile app for energy conservation and monitoring.

The Verizon Foundation invited the University of Alaska Fairbanks to apply for their $40,000 grant. The application is invitation-only. After receiving the invitation, the Office of Sustainability went through an online proposal submission process in order to be considered for the grant. The Verizon proposal process requires an eligible focus, a description of how results will be tracked and reported periodically, a list of a detailed approach to the proposal’s goal and a detailed budget. 

“We kind of hope that this relationship will grow,” Office of Sustainability Director Michele Hebert said. “There is a lot of potential here. Verizon already has a strong focus on science, technology, engineering and math curriculum.”

The goal of the grant is to support more efficient management of energy, according to a Sept. 26 press release from Verizon. It was the Sustainable Village’s original goal of being a fuel-efficient and teamwork-focused organization that drew Verizon in.

The grant from the Verizon Foundation will be used to host and run The App Challenge, a competition hosted by the Office of Sustainability, Residence Life, UAF Marketing and the Office of Information & Technology for students to submit their ideas for an app. Criteria for the apps will include a focus on energy efficiency research.

All students from all backgrounds are encouraged to submit their ideas. Student ideas do not need to contain technical language or be in development to qualify. Prizes will be awarded for first and second place at $1,000 and $500 respectively. The winning app will be included in a Request for Proposals to choose an app company for the development process.

The contest is expected to begin November 1 and last until Jan. 14 when students return from winter break. More information about this contest can be found on the Office of Sustainability’s website.

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