Sustainability Across the Curriculum Initiative

Equipping Faculty & Students to Build a Sustainable Future

Created and led by the USC President’s Working Group on Sustainability and Office of Academic Programs, the Sustainability Across the Curriculum Initiative (SACI) supports the development of new courses, programs, and curricular approaches that focus on sustainability.

USC’s mission is to cultivate engaged human beings who are empowered to have a positive impact on society. To this end, an understanding that sustainability presents one of society’s greatest challenges is essential. Sustainability is not just about the environmental effects of climate change, resource depletion, waste generation, and biodiversity loss, but also about how these factors intersect with and affect people and societies. We depend on healthy ecosystems for our survival, but a sustainable world will not be attainable unless these benefits extend to all. Indeed, the intersection of sustainability with issues of social justice and diversity, equity and inclusion are of particular importance and interest to USC as we move towards a sustainable future.

As the concept of sustainability cuts across many disciplines in both content and practice, the aim of this program is to encourage the development of expanded sustainability content through all disciplines at the university.

a professor points to part of an environmental diagram on a project screen as students listen and take notes

Apply for a Grant

Grant eligibility is open to full-time, T/TT and RTPC faculty who have teaching as part of their work profile. Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis until funding is exhausted.

Please review the grant types below before preparing your application. Use the links below the grant types to download the full RFP and access the application portal. If you have any questions, please contact SACI Academic Director Jill Sohm (

Grant Type 1: Integrating Sustainability into Existing Courses

An award in the amount of $5,000 in course development funds will be allocated for each collaborative project, with $3,500 going to the course instructor and $1,500 to the development partner.

Grant Type 2: New Sustainability-Themed Course Proposals

An award in the amount of $10,000 in course development funds will be allocated for each new course being developed.

Grant Type 3: New Sustainability Minors, Graduate and Undergraduate Certificates

Grants of this type are variable, in support of developing a new minor, graduate certificate, or undergraduate certificate that explicitly focuses on sustainability through a disciplinary or interdisciplinary lens.

Grant Type 4: Revision or Updating of Existing Programs

Grants of this type are variable, in support of revising existing majors, minors, or graduate programs to prioritize material that explicitly focuses on sustainability through a disciplinary or interdisciplinary lens.

Upcoming Events

Faculty Development Workshop

When: March 4-5, 2023

Where: Wrigley Marine Science Center, Catalina Island

Cost: Free! Transportation to Catalina, housing, and meals are covered. All participants will also receive $500 in faculty development funds to support the implementation of ideas generated through the workshop.

This workshop is open to all full-time USC faculty. No previous sustainability experience or knowledge necessary!

At this workshop, you’ll:

  • Explore methods for incorporating sustainability into the classroom
  • Deepen your knowledge of sustainability and its many dimensions
  • Build community with USC peers who are interested in sustainability in education
  • Learn about USC sustainability efforts and how they can be integrated into the classroom
  • Strengthen your sense of place in Southern California through time on Catalina Island

Resources & Trainings

What is Sustainability? (PDF)

The Spring 2021 issue of the Dornsife Office of Experiential and Applied Learning newsletter focused on sustainability in experiential learning programs, including an article on the challenge and importance of defining sustainability.

Resources for Incorporating Sustainability into Courses (PDF)

Prepared by SACI Academic Director Jill Sohm for the SACI Pilot Program

Sustainability Across the Curriculum Symposium (USC login required)

The inaugural SACI cohort gathered to share insights from and answer questions about their experiences incorporating sustainability into their classrooms.