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Presidio Graduate School Inspiration Strikes Fund | (ISF)


Presidio Graduate School presentationThe Presidio Graduate School Inspiration Strikes Fund supports Presidio Graduate School students in bringing their best sustainability ideas to the public via industry, trade, and academic conferences via an officially presentation of their academic paper or business venture plan in front of an audience, promoting their careers and advancing the sustainability field in the process. The Fund underwrites costs associated with conference attendance.


The Fund will provide opportunities for students’ intellectual and professional growth while promoting Presidio’s unique sustainability mission. In addition, the Fund will enhance Presidio’s visibility in the marketplace and attract highly qualified students to Presidio’s MPA and MBA programs, such as the founder of the Fund, who is a current MPA student.

Fund Governance

Summer Meyer, Fund Cofounder and MPA alumna; Scott Meyer, Fund Cofounder; William Shutkin, President and CEO; Siobhan Foley, MPA alumna; Joey Christiano, MBA alumus.

Three members of this governance board will evaluate proposals. These members will be chosen depending on availability and on the topic of the proposal.


Funding will be offered to MPA and MBA students or alumni who have graduated from Presidio Graduate School within the last 2 years.

Students will be currently enrolled, full or part-time, and be in good standing.

Topics and quality of academic papers/projects

Proposals for funding will describe the academic or professional projects that promote, highlight, examine, explain or survey sustainability issues across a myriad of topics. Systems thinking and a holistic worldview will be required elements of all selected submissions. Projects can be on issues students are personally interested in, can be based on a class assignment or can be a result of their Capstone class.

Projects must be well written, well-presented, appeal to an informed general public, show high standards of critical and analytic thinking and contribute something without which the field of sustainability would be decidedly poorer.

Application Process

  1. Fill out the grant application form, found here.
  2. Send the form to the address provided or include in an email to Summer Meyer at least 4 weeks before the date of the proposed conference.

Presidio Graduate School
Attn: Inspiration Strikes Fund
36 Lincoln Boulevard
San Francisco CA 94129

  1. Attach a copy of the paper or project to the application form for review. If available, also include the presentation slides or a description of other materials you will be using.
  2. Approval by the fund and acceptance of the paper/project at the conference will be followed by the distribution of grant money upon receipt of official travel plan documents, such as airfare and hotel reservations.
  3. A “Founders’ Exception” is available for last minute applicants who can make an excellent case for short-term approval. In this case a first official draft will be reviewed and the applicant will be presented with a funding commitment up to a certain amount, awaiting conference acceptance.

Assignment of grant

The amount of the grant will depend on location of conference, taking flight and lodging costs into account. If the conference sponsor does not waive the registration fee upon acceptance, that fee can be included in the grant.

Applications will be on a rolling basis, as conferences are scheduled year-round.
International conferences will be considered.

Additional requirements

Networking via (social) media sites: Students who have been awarded grant funding will report/blog and network while attending their event via outlets such as Twitter, Facebook, Grist, TriplePundit, Dotearth and Huffington Post Green/SF. The Fund application will require you to choose 3 of these for your reporting.

Follow-up Event: The Fund will organize an annual event at which individuals receiving Fund support will discuss their work for the benefit of the Presidio community.