The Brita Products Company invites proposals for its second annual College FilterForGood Eco-Challenge Grant Program. Undergraduate and graduate students in good academic standing in an accredited college or university in the U.S. are encouraged to prepare a proposal and budget for a program that is either action-based or will create tangible results in the interest of helping to protect the environment. The program should be initiated and make significant progress towards completion by April 2010.

Awards: Up to five $10,000 grants

Deadline: October 30, 2009

Contact: Click here to apply. Go to for submission guidelines.

The following schools won last year’s challenge: Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Harvard Law School, The George Washington University, University of California-Davis and Warren Wilson College.  In addition, FilterForGood will support students from California Lutheran University, The University of Minnesota, The University of Arkansas, Washington University in St. Louis, New York University and Duquesne University to grow existing projects and jumpstart new programs.

To get an idea of wht they are looking for, check out last year’s winners.

Massachusetts Institute of Technology: Sun Conditioning

MIT’s group of students, led by Kat Potter, Yuanwen Wayne Liu and Mike Lee, have designed an efficient system that utilizes solar energy for air conditioning and heating systems. New systems like this are important because they help offset the energy used to heat and cool buildings. Generating hot water alone accounts for 49% of total U.S. energy usage each year. The development and installation of their Solar Air Conditioning System on campus will reduce energy consumption and provide a model for the nation. Once installed, the system will save 60,000 kWh of traditional energy and eliminate at least 80,000 lbs of CO2 emission per year.

Harvard Law School: Ride to raise awareness

Massachusetts Power Shift (MAPS) is a student-powered climate change network represents more than 20 campuses across Massachusetts. Teams of ten students will travel between towns in Massachusetts by bike where they will implement grassroots canvassing and host educational events surrounding climatechange. Harvard Law students Craig Altemose and Jay O’Hara were the masterminds who submitted this proposal on behalf of MAPS.

George Washington University: Landfill 101

The George Washington University is taking steps to become the university model of sustainable practices. Graduate student Joshua Lasky, a Presidential Administrative Fellow in the school’s Office of Sustainability, is working to ensure that the school’s new LEED-certified dorm is bottled water-free. All suites will be outfitted with Brita filtration products and each resident will receive a FilterForGood bottle when they move in. As a bonus, they’ll be invited to join a team of “Filter Fellows” to help spread their bottled water-free lifestyle throughout campus.

University of California-Davis: Don’t get leafed behind!

Forests are one of nature’s most important filters because they moderate the ways in which water, nutrients and living organisms move from place to place. Planting trees offers an immediate and direct offset of the negative effects of deforestation. Kelly Garbach will educate people about forest conservation one tree at a time by planting trees on the campus farm, studying forest filters and sharing research results in community presentations to raise awareness of how forests function as filters. It is her hope to increase awareness of the importance of forests as filters and thus promote long-term forest conservation. We give her a green thumb’s up!

Warren Wilson College: Save your energy and the planet

Warren Wilson College provides education that combines liberal arts, work and service with a strong commitment to environmental responsibility and cross-cultural understanding. The college recently pledged to reduce overall greenhouse gas emissions by 80 percent by 2020, so undergraduate student Gideon Burdick took it upon himself to make good. He’s creating a low-cost “Real Time Energy Monitor” that will reinforce energy-saving activities by providing students and faculty with immediate feedback on their energy consumption via a Web site. WWC will further its commitment to environmental awareness by also using the Web site as an educational tool about energy, fossil fuels and greenhouse gasses.

© 2009, Tracey de Morsella. All rights reserved. Do not republish.

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Author: Tracey de Morsella (323 Articles)

Tracey de Morsella started her career working as an editor for US Technology Magazine. She used that experience to launch Delaware Valley Network, a publication for professionals in the Greater Philadelphia area. Years later, she used the contacts and resources she acquired to work in executive search specializing in technical and diversity recruitment. She has conducted recruitment training seminars for Wachovia Bank, the Department of Interior and the US Postal Service. During this time, she also created a diversity portal called The Multicultural Advantage and published the Diversity Recruitment Advertising Toolkit, a directory of recruiting resources for human resources professionals. Her career and recruitment articles have appeared in numerous publications and web portals including Woman Engineer Magazine,, Job Search Channel, Workplace Diversity Magazine, Society for Human Resource Management web site, NSBE Engineering Magazine,, and Human Resource Consultants Association Newsletter. Her work with technology professionals drew her to pursuing training and work in web development, which led to a stint at Merrill Lynch as an Intranet Manager. In March, she decided to combine her technical and career management expertise with her passion for the environment, and with her husband, launched The Green Economy Post, a blog providing green career information and covering the impact of the environment, sustainable building, cleantech and renewable energy on the US economy. Her sustainability articles have appeared on Industrial Maintenance & Plant Operation, Chem.Info,FastCompany and CleanTechies.