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The Green Fund was established to benefit the whole of Tufts University. Some previously funded projects are on-going, so check them out below and consider getting involved today!

Funded During the 2022-23 Cycle

e-PTD Charging and Storage

Funded 2024

This project aims to address Tufts’ restriction of the use, storage, and charging of e-scooters, e-bikes, hoverboards, and other electronically powered transportation devices (e-PTDs) on campus. This project proposes the creation of designated outdoor locations for community members to store their e-PTDs as well as safety guidelines and registration procedures to ensure awareness of the potential dangers of the lithium-ion batteries that power e-PTDs. The e-PTD project will install bike racks and charging stations in the two parking garages on the Medford/Somerville campus, creating a place for Tufts community members who use e-PTDs to safely charge and store their devices. The project aims to complete the installation of the storage and charging locations, registration process, and safety manual by fall 2024.  

Nutrition Security Initiative: Fork Farms at Tufts

Funded 2024

The Nutrition Security Initiative: Fork Farms at Tufts aims to grow sustainable nutrition at Tufts for graduate students on the SMFA and Boston/Health Sciences campuses. The project, proposed by the team at the Seeding the Future Lab, part of the Friedman School’s Food & Nutrition Innovation Institute, developed from the difficulty of balancing living expenses and healthy food choices for graduate students at Tufts. The team identified the nutritional gap for students at these two campuses in particular, which have limited access to fresh produce items, and will use the “Flex Farm” hydroponic pod systems for indoor growing from hydroponic farming company Fork Farms to produce fresh, nutritious food for students. After the initial set up of the hydroponic systems, the largely self-sustaining pods are estimated to provide an average of 20 pounds of produce per month, which will become available to the hundreds of graduate students on these campuses as well as other members of the Tufts community.  

SMFA Garden

Funded 2024

The SMFA Garden initiative, proposed by undergraduate student Abigail Harrison, aims to update the existing SMFA Garden, which was originally supported by the Green Fund in 2020. This project will add planters and plants, develop an educational seeding and planting workshop, and add community signage, making the garden a more identifiable shared area for the community. The updated SMFA Garden will continue to provide a space for native pollinators while creating a more accessible shared green space for students, faculty, and staff in the SMFA community. 

Fletcher Community Garden

Funded 2024

This project focuses on the creation of the Fletcher Community Garden on the Medford/Somerville campus. This community garden will create a new gathering space for the Fletcher School’s community on the fourth-floor patio of their building as well as a new community engagement space for meetings and events. The group of staff and faculty members behind the project aim to establish a calming and welcoming space through the implementation of planters with native plants, including herbs and plants that will attract pollinators. In addition to the establishment of plant and soil supplies, the team will also enhance the aesthetic appeal of the community space to create a new, sustainable environment and promote community engagement for Fletcher community members.  

Refil Station: Digital Fabrication through Closed-Loop Filament Creation

Funded 2024

This project, proposed by BFA student Yaqi Cai and MS Human Computer Interaction student Matt Ebisu, aims to address the plastic waste from discarded bottles made from PETG, a thermoformable plastic used to make plastic bottles and 3D printing filament, on university campuses. The team will turn discarded plastic bottles into usable 3D printing filament by using an existing open-source design, ultimately providing free fabrication materials for arts and engineering communities at Tufts. The project aims to place the filament fabrication machine in a visible space in the SMFA to encourage community participation in 3D printing, as well as hold workshops to provide training and education about sustainable art practices. 

Project Feederwatch

Funded Fall 2023

This project increases opportunities for experiential learning for the Tufts community, which is part of the ExCollege mission. It is a direct way for students to not only get experience identifying birds, but learn about community data collection, climate change, and the environment. Project Feederwatch is a citizen science project run by the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, where participants count birds at feeders and collect data which helps scientists track population trends, climate change, environmental factors, and more. On count days, participants come to the count site, are given an introduction to the project and bird identification, and then count birds for as little as 10 minutes or as long as two hours, allowing for flexibility and the ability to participate multiple times. The project runs from November through April and count days occur weekly.

Formalin Recycling

Funded Fall 2023

This project will help reduce purchasing costs and overall hazardous waste production at Tufts Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine. Formalin is the most commonly used fixative for diagnostic specimens submitted to the Cummings Veterinary Diagnostic Lab (CVDL). The CVDL must routinely purchase formalin for fixing specimens that require disease diagnosis. However, formalin is a hazardous chemical, and additional cost and effort are required to properly and legally dispose of it. This presents an opportunity for improved sustainability and an educational opportunity, as formalin purchasing and use- associated costs and resources must be utilized continuously to maintain supply and manage disposal. This project aims to reduce total hazardous waste use and disposal by recycling formalin into formalin that is appropriate for re-use. Doing so will encourage and educate our school about ways to reduce the environmental impact of diagnostic and research specimens.

'Bos to Bikers

Funded 2022-23

This project will teach the Tufts community bike riding so that they can navigate in a safe, sustainable and more efficient way on campus. There are numerous bike services on campus: bike check-outs from Tisch, a free bike repair shop, and numerous bike racks all over campus. However, all these programs can only serve a limited population: those that already know how to ride bikes. The project aims to bridge the gap between those who have had the opportunity to learn biking at a young age and those who have not. The Green Fund selection committee awarded Bos to Bikers $4,110 for safety equipment, helmets, trainings on teaching biking, and compensation for biking teachers. 

Double Arrows Project

Funded 2022-23

The Double Arrows project will work with artist Elizabeth James Perry, a member of the Wampanoag Tribe of Gay Head - Aquinnah, to do a restorative planting garden with an emphasis on natural dye plants at the Indigenous Center in conjunction with her solo exhibition at Tufts University Art Galleries. It will extend the Galleries' project into a long-term engagement with the Tufts community through building outdoor container gardens and planters with Native plants conducive to natural dye, weaving and basketry practices. Double Arrows' gardens will continue to be stewarded by the Indigenous Center students through a manageable caretaking plan for the next three years. The group will create one or two container gardens at the Indigenous Center. Perry will do a workshop with students in advance of planting to share natural dye planting and weaving techniques and interested students can join her in the transplanting seedlings to the plot in May 2023. The Green Fund selection committee awarded Double Arrows $5,750 for container planters, facilities needs, seeds, plants, soil, gardening supplies, workshop supplies, an artist honorarium, and student stipends for project management and caretaking.

Boston Campus Community Garden Project

Funded 2022-23

The Boston Campus Community Garden Project will create a Boston Community Garden on the Tufts Boston campus to provide a space for the community to come together and connect with one another and the land through the act of gardening. The garden aims to provide a beautiful green space within the city campus and be open for enjoyment by students and faculty alike. The garden will consist of a 10x10 plot of arable land within the Posner Courtyard. They also 
hope to add hardy native flowering perennials to the outskirts of the Jaharis Courtyard. Managed by the students, they hope the garden will provide the coming generations of Health-Sciences students with healthy produce and act as a symbol for Tufts’ commitment to sustainability. The Green Fund selection committee awarded the Boston Campus Community Garden Project $621 for fertilizer, garden tools, seeds, a watering can, travel costs, and food and water for work days. 

Tufts Nutrition Data Symposium

Funded 2022-23

The 16th annual Tufts Nutrition Data Symposium (theme: Sustainability NOW! Action-Oriented Solutions for Food Systems, Nutrition, and Diet) is a student-driven event that aims to empower the next generation of professionals in nutrition, public health, and data science. Held from March 8-10th, 2023, TNDS will feature hands-on workshops, student research, networking, exploration of solutions, and learning from experts. It will promote sustainability across multiple domains while highlighting solutions and action in the nutrition sustainability space; expose important topics, provide hands-on analytical and technical workshops, and opportunities to practice communicating findings; and advance student careers by connecting students with new ideas and other researchers. The Green Fund selection committee awarded the TNDS Leadership Committee $3,600 to support operational and technical costs, awards, giveaways, and honoraria for external keynote speakers. 

Solar Conversion of Cummings Critter Cams

Funded 2022-23

This project will support conversion of most of Tufts Center for Conservation Medicine’s Grafton Campus wildlife camera array, known as Cummings Critter Cams, from battery to solar power. The Cummings Critter Cam project helps train MS students, but is also used for ongoing research projects, local outreach, and to give the Tufts community a greater appreciation for the wildlife around the Grafton campus. Solar conversion will minimize use of disposable and rechargeable batteries and allow for fewer camera checks, thereby lowering human disturbance. By powering cameras indefinitely, it will save time, money, and the impact of human traffic in the forest for checking the cameras. The Green Fund selection committee awarded the team of students and professors $2,600 to cover costs of solar packs, security cable locks, and retrofitting.

Environmental Humanities Symposium

Funded 2022-23

This team will organize a recurring symposium for the development and exchange of ideas in the Environmental Humanities, leading to future collaborations and place-based projects on our university’s campuses. Tufts faculty, students, and staff across schools, as well as local activists and Indigenous residents, will be invited to participate in the symposium and lead discussions to unpack pressing topics and take active part in defining questions, conversations, and hands-on projects. The symposium will include a panel and roundtable that reimagines a particular challenge on the Tufts campus by using Environmental Humanities frameworks. A session will focus on the widespread use of monoculture lawns on the Medford Campus, and the event will conclude with a proposal for the Medford campus. Graduate and undergraduate students will contribute to planning, promotion, event moderation, and participation. The team will partner with student clubs and academic courses to foster knowledge creation and community building around the Environmental Humanities both in and outside the classroom. The Green Fund selection committee awarded the team $5,700 to cover speaker honoraria and transportation, marketing, printing, and food for attendees.

Environmental Humanities Symposium draws interdisciplinary crowd | Center for the Humanities at Tufts | Tufts University

Craft Center Box for Sustainable Workshops

Funded 2022-23

The Tufts Craft Center is a student-volunteer-run space on the Medford Campus. By investing in a Craft Center Box, it would give student groups access to a set of shared craft supplies for use at campus events, especially at times of high demand for the center’s supplies. This box will be available for student organizations and identity centers to borrow the box for workshops. The Green Fund selection committee awarded the team $693 to fund storage bins, scissors, markers, glue sticks, rulers, and replacement materials.

Green Exercise Initiative

Funded 2022-23

The Green Exercise Initiative will install an energy producing treadmill in the Steve Tisch Sports and Fitness Center to work towards a carbon-neutral Tufts and promote a healthier herd. The treadmill will produce clean energy while increasing awareness of CO2 production. Energy produced will result in a profit of $138/year. After the pilot project is completed, success will be reviewed, and Tufts Athletics may explore the possibility of replacing all gym equipment with energy-producing equivalents. The Green Fund selection committee awarded the team $5,382 to fund an energy-producing treadmill, freight, and installation.

Making Tufts a Tree Campus

Funded 2022-23

This project aims to get the Medford/Somerville campus certified as a Tree Campus Higher Education by the National Arbor Day Foundation. This will create opportunities for Tufts community members to get involved with urban forestry and build a support system for maintaining and expanding our canopy while drawing attention to the need for intentional tree protection. Long-term, the team hopes to create opportunities for students to volunteer and intern with the cities of Medford and Somerville. The Green Fund selection committee awarded the team $8,050 to fund trees, Arbor Tree event costs, tree inventory supplies and analysis, t-shirts, and identification signs.

Funded During the 2021-22 Cycle

SciTech Autoclave

Funded 2021-22

SciTech Autoclave is a project to purchase a smaller, more efficient autoclave for the SciTech Center at Tufts. Currently, the SciTech Center has a large autoclave for sterilizing lab equipment that is highly inefficient in water and electricity usage. The Green Fund selection committee awarded the $6,330.77 to the SciTech Autoclave team for purchase of a smaller, more efficient autoclave. The CHBE and BME departments agreed to match up to $5,500 for the purchase of a smaller autoclave. It is estimated that a smaller autoclave will save Tufts around $3,200 annually in electricity and water costs, and it is the hope of the project team and the Green Fund committee that results from this project will prompt other labs at Tufts to purchase more efficient equipment that will provide cost savings in the long term. It is estimated that a smaller capacity autoclave will divert 50% of the usage of the inefficient large autoclave. 

Funded During the 2020-21 Cycle

Tufts Hydroponics Collaboration

Funded 2020-21

Tufts/New Entry, in collaboration with Building Audacity and Essex North Shore Agriculture & Technology School will design, build, and operate commercial hydroponic equipment to foster community engagement, address food insecurity, and enhance student learning. This will serve as a training ground for urban farmers, a living laboratory for plant scientists, and a source of fresh produce year round for the community.

Since receiving funding, New Entry has hired three student interns to support the project. Building Audacity has also been able to secure the lease for the building to set up the hydroponic equipment.

Funded During the 2019-20 Cycle

Every Watt Counts

Funded 2019-20

This campaign, created by the Tufts Technology Service (TTS) Sustainability Team, aims to reduce energy usage at Tufts by encouraging the community to power down devices or put them on standby when not in use. Their budget funds: sticker design, sticker production, and educational outreach roadshows. The sticker serves as a visual reminder that every small action matters in supporting the broader Tufts sustainability strategic theme.


Funded 2019-20

Multi-Site Conference Hosting Initiative (MULCH), led by Tufts University, will develop and pilot an innovative format for hosting simultaneous linked in-person conferences in multiple sites. We will offer links for 4 main conference components:

  1. Keynote Presentations. Building on proven existing technology, we will enhance procedures for remote questions and effective testing protocols to avoid mishaps.
  2. Panel Discussions. For panels of 1 to 4 people, we will enable varying combinations of in-person and remote participation.
  3. Receptions and Social Settings. We will develop and pilot an arrangement for numbered camera/screen locations along a wall in a reception hall, linked across sites.
  4. Online participation. For participants not attending one of the in-person sites, we will provide an online participation option. Blair MacIntyre, a professor at Georgia Tech and a developer with Mozilla Hubs, is helping us develop a virtual reality (VR) space for online participants.

New Entry Fall Harvest Week

Funded 2019-20

New Entry and Tufts Dining will collaborate for a weeklong series of events in the fall of 2021 that will center around local food and community education. The event will help inform the Tufts community about local food systems, issues facing small-scale beginning farmers, and the work of New Entry which is becoming a more integral feature of food system programming offered at Tufts. This event will also help bridge academic programs and colleges, bringing together graduate and undergraduate students across Medford and Boston campuses. Further, it will provide delicious, locally grown food to students, staff, and faculty, while supporting small farmers in the region and opening additional opportunities for local food procurement by Tufts Dining.

Take Out at Elm Cafe

Funded 2019-20

Currently, Elm Café uses plastic wrap or boxes coated with plastic that cannot be composted or recycled. Reusable takeout containers at Elm Café can drastically cut down on waste on the Grafton campus and raise more awareness for sustainability.

Currently, Elm Café uses plastic wrap or boxes coated with plastic that cannot be composted or recycled. Reusable takeout containers at Elm Café can drastically cut down on waste on the Grafton campus and raise more awareness for sustainability. *This project was funded in 2020, but began as of March 2022.*

Funded During the 2018-19 Cycle

Nitrile Glove Recycling

Funded 2018-19

The goal of this project is to implement a recycling stream for single use disposable gloves at Tufts. These gloves are necessary in laboratories and clinics for personnel and patient safety, and can be recycled into consumer goods. This pilot program will focus on research laboratories on the Medford campus and non-infectious clinics at the Cummings Veterinary Medical Center.

Activities since funding:

  • Created a running glove recycling program in the STC
  • Diverted over 200 lbs of waste from landfills
  • Currently expanding across Medford, Grafton, and Boston