Engineering Our Sustainable & Equitable Future
Sep 08
Our Programs

Greenway Institute Awarded $1.2 Million Grant

White River Junction, VT – Greenway Institute and Elizabethtown College were awarded a $1.2 million grant by the National Science Foundation (NSF) to develop and launch the Greenway Center for Equity and Sustainability (GCES) in Engineering in Vermont.

“The Greenway Center for Equity and Sustainability addresses our two biggest imperatives for engineering education: closing opportunity gaps for historically marginalized students and preparing the next generation of engineers to build a sustainable future. Because historically marginalized groups, including communities of color and rural students, are often the first and most harmed by failures to think sustainably, the challenges of equity and sustainable engineering are one and the same,” said the grant co-PI Greenway Institute co-founder and former Secretary of Education of Vermont, Rebecca Holcombe.

The Greenway Center for Equity and Sustainability will operate as an innovation campus under Elizabethtown’s School of Engineering, Math and Science. It will redesign and re-center engineering education around sustainability and research-based equity practices that empower students from underrepresented groups. The grant will help fund:

  • An immersive “sustainability semester” in Vermont where engineering students from around the country engage in hands-on engineering projects that introduce them to principles and practices of sustainability
  • A first-year of immersive, team-based, hands-on engineering education for students admitted to Elizabethtown’s engineering program
  • Project-based professional development for K-12 teachers in collaboration with the Elizabethtown’s Masters in Curriculum and Instruction

“With the help of this grant, we hope to reimagine engineering education around our shared commitments to equity and sustainability. Both institutions are committed to providing students with hands-on, project-based learning models and to conducting research that addresses the barriers students often encounter in engineering education due to socioeconomic, gender, rural and racial disparities,” said Elizabethtown College Dean of the School of Engineering, Math and Science, and grant co-Principal Investigator Sara Atwood.

Greenway Institute and Elizabethtown are partnering around a shared vision to provide the best undergraduate engineering education in the country through a unique hands-on, project-based, sustainability and equity-focused education program that prepares future engineers to imagine, design, and build communities that are better for the people, the environment, and a vibrant economy. The GCES program will seek approval from the State of Vermont to offer ABET-accredited engineering courses at a site in Vermont.

“Greenway Institute and Elizabethtown College have a relationship based on our longstanding work together,” said Troy McBride, co-founder of the Greenway Institute, CTO of Norwich Technologies, and previous faculty member at Elizabethtown. “Greenway gets people excited about sustainability, excited about technology, excited about engineering, and shows them how to design an equitable and sustainable future.”

Learn about Greenway Institute at Explore Elizabethtown’s Engineering program at