Students Step-Up for Communities

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  • Dearborn, Mich. — Internet statistics, recycling glass, taxies, 3D printers and a wind turbine. College students representing 20 different projects envision these mostly every day items as tools to solve needs in their local communities.

    As semi-finalists in the Ford College Community Challenge, the proposals now vie for $25,000 each from the “Building Sustainable Communities” grant contest. The Michigan banner is carried by the Michigan State University, Michigan Tech, University of Michigan and Wayne State University, but this is not a single state contest. Potentially new winners to this program of the Ford Fund, now in its eighth year, are Brigham Young University; Georgia Tech; Morehouse College; Northeastern University; Rocky Mountain College; Southwestern College; University of California, San Diego; University of Wisconsin – Madison. Familiar schools from among last year’s winners include: Purdue University, University of Georgia, Virginia Commonwealth University. The Ford Motor Company Fund will select up to 10 winning proposals.

    The communities and non-profit partners face daunting challenges daily. Students propose solutions to tough problems ranging from analyzing collected data to homelessness and an abundance of glass waste to long distance between a consumer and groceries to wide range of unrecycled plastics and need for income to a budget strapped school district. Ford C3 grant empowers students to change the world, bringing their unique perspective to improve the quality of life in these communities.