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Collage of photos showing different TGIF-funded projects

The Green Initiative Fund renewed in student elections

It’s official! Pending final approval from the UC Office of the President, The Green Initiative Fund, or TGIF, will continue funding undergraduate-centered sustainability projects through the 2030-31 academic year after a successful referendum, voted on by students.

Established in 2016, TGIF is a campus program hosted by UC Davis Sustainability and supported by student fees that provides grants up to $20,000 for projects and initiatives led by or impacting undergraduate students with a focus on promoting environmental awareness, engaging in sustainability research, advocating for climate justice and more.

“Having TGIF as an on campus resource is crucial for undergraduate researchers and student groups to find funding for their sustainability projects that they might not find elsewhere, especially when grants from other UC Davis funding programs are highly competitive,” said Annie Kanjamala, TGIF committee member and environmental science and management major.

In the recent ASUCD elections, the referendum on the TGIF renewal secured the necessary approval votes and voter participation for the program to continue. This means a $3.50 per quarter fee will be reinstated in student fees beginning in Fall 2024, with $0.50 increase in the fee per each following quarter to address the growing interest in and demand for sustainability programming.

With this renewal, TGIF will continue funding innovative, impactful programs. The fund has typically awarded between $100,000 and $200,000 each academic year to projects. 

“Over the years TGIF has funded so many amazing sustainability initiatives, from projects improving the Arboretum and Student Farm to individual research projects and club events, and I’m excited to see what future student projects get funded,” Kanjamala said.

Projects that received a TGIF grant include Aggie House — which provides students who face housing insecurity with a place to stay and food — the Texas Tree Trials, which is helping the university identify “climate-ready” tree species that will tolerate both our current climate and future conditions — and smaller projects like the addition of compost bins in Kearney Hall dorm rooms.

As a TGIF committee member, Kanjamala helps evaluate proposals, decide on awards, provide guidance on projects and more.

“Being on the TGIF committee has been a very special experience. I’ve gotten unique insight on how grant programs are managed, and each referendum process has given me countless opportunities to develop my professional skills while surrounded by peers that care deeply about improving campus sustainability!” Kanjamala said. “Seeing students' project ideas each grant cycle continually shows me how creative UC Davis students are when it comes to sustainability.”

The next call for proposals for TGIF will be in fall 2024. Learn more about TGIF through FAQs, office hours, past projects and more.