Competition and Creative Thinking


The University of Minnesota Institute on the Environment's Acara Challenge is an annual competition to fund students that are developing solutions to address social and/or environmental challenges. Applications are accepted from students of all majors and in all stages of project development from all University of Minnesota campuses.

Competition finalists receive mentorship on developing proposals and pitches, as well as support in refining their goals and creating a viable launch program. Past winners have received grants for work as diverse and far-reaching as sustainable fuel start-ups, fashion retail centers for the Native American and transgender communities, and legal support for low-income individuals entangled in the justice system. The deadline for the next round of Acara Challenge proposals is February 1, 2019.

Learn more.