course & program grants

get funding and support to pioneer new ways to engage students in inclusive stem innovation and entrepreneurship

VentureWell Course & Program Grants (formerly called “Faculty Grants”) of up to $30,000 are awarded to faculty or staff at US higher education institutions to support curriculum that engages students in science and technology innovation and entrepreneurship.

We are currently accepting proposals ONLY for sustainable design or sustainable technology at this time; we will be accepting proposals on other topics in fall 2022.




spring 2022 sustainable design course and program grants

The Spring 2022 Sustainable Design Course & Program Grants cycle will support faculty and staff who are committed to cultivating I&E dedicated to positive progress towards social and environmental sustainability (see Appendices for definitions), and will integrate sustainable design concepts, tools, and frameworks into their I&E curriculum. We are seeking proposals with innovative ideas related to the development of new courses and programs, or to strengthening existing courses and programs, that incorporate key sustainable design concepts with the end goal of developing novel inventions and technologies.

Special consideration will be given to proposals that demonstrate clear support for student innovations that are dedicated to climate change solutions (i.e., mitigation and/or adaptation; see Appendices for definitions); innovations to existing products or systems that address an opportunity to become carbon neutral or net zero energy or reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, pollution, and waste; and innovations that address social issues including livability, health and health equity, community development, social justice and equity, and social and community resilience.

Examples of sustainable design concepts, tools, and frameworks include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Systems thinking & whole system mapping
  • Environmental impact measurement methods (i.e., Life Cycle Assessment (LCA), Cradle-to-Cradle Certification, etc.)
  • Greener materials development and/or selection (i.e., green chemistry, materials science, or manufacturing)
  • Engineering for One Planet (EOP) Framework
  • Circular economy
  • United Nations Sustainable Development Goals

Learn more about sustainable design content at VentureWell’s Tools for Design & Sustainability.

For complete eligibility requirements, go to the guidelines page.

For questions, please contact

fall 2022 course and program focus areas

  • General (science- and technology-based) entrepreneurship
  • Sustainable technologies (new materials, clean tech, green energy and chemistry innovation)
  • Climate change solutions (technology to mitigate and/or adapt to climate change), especially technologies that support communities most impacted by climate change
  • Biomedical and healthcare innovation
  • Technologies that address poverty alleviation and basic human needs

successful course & program grant proposals will:

  • Create or strengthen courses or programs that engage student teams in developing novel technology innovations with the end goal of pursuing scalable solutions to real world needs with social and/or environmental impact.
  • Provide students with a meaningful experience, including opportunities for experiential learning and the formation of student teams that may be eligible to apply to VentureWell’s E-Team program.
  • Set the stage for sustained institutional change. Schools that are just beginning to grow their I&E ecosystems are also encouraged to apply, and should describe the funded course or program as part of a larger plan for entrepreneurial ecosystem development.
  • Articulate a plan for broadening participation among underrepresented groups (URGs). Proposals must provide a clear and specific plan to articulate how the course or program will increase participation of students and faculty from URGs in science and technology innovation and entrepreneurship.

Learn more before you apply

Course & Program Grants may be used to strengthen existing curricular programs or to build new, inclusive courses and programs that engage student teams in developing and pursuing scalable solutions to real world needs through science and technology innovation and entrepreneurship.

Activities supported by Course & Program Grants should lead to effective courses and programs that are sustained by the institution, lead to the formation of student teams (ideally involved with the VentureWell E-Team Program), and expand opportunities for learning across science and technology innovation and entrepreneurship at the parent institution.

Explore the following resources to learn more about the grant and start developing your proposal:


Contact our Grants support team via email at

Impact numbers

  • We have awarded $18M+ in grants to support course and program development since 1996
  • Over the past five years, we’ve funded 600 STEM I&E courses and programs serving over 40K students
  • 360+ institutions have participated in our programs

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