Sustainability at the University of Maryland

Possible Student Projects

Each year, students in Professional Writing (i.e. English 39X) and other courses select campus sustainability as the focus of their semester projects. Because many students write proposals for initiatives that campus facilities managers are already working on (installing solar panels on campus buildings, installing energy efficient lights in residence halls, etc.), the Office of Sustainability constructed the following list of possible research projects to guide students toward research topics that will help us create a more sustainable campus.

The following research topics represent some "unanswered questions" the Office of Sustainability has about student behavior. If you investigate any of these topics, you will want to identify the appropriate target audience that could implement your proposal. You will need to identify the barriers to accomplishing the sustainable behavior before you can propose a solution. When your research is finished, please send a copy of your report to the Office of Sustainability.

  • How to encourage students to eat sustainable food options (local, organic, vegetarian, etc.) in the Dining Hall or when dining off campus?
  • How to encourage students who live near campus to walk, bike, or use mass transit to get to campus?
  • How to encourage students to reduce electricity or water consumption in their residences?
  • How to encourage responsible consumerism among students?
  • How to encourage Terp football fans to recycle bottles and cans while tailgating before football games?

If you have another idea for a research project but are not sure if someone on campus is already working on that issue, please email the Office of Sustainability at sustainability@umd.edu and we will do our best to give you timely feedback.

More: