The Uliea Blog

We're awarding Innovative Environmental Ed and STEM Programs ... AGAIN! Read on for full deets.

Yup, that's right!! We are hosting our third annual ULIEA (UL Innovative Education Awards) competition and five deserving orgs will split prizes totaling $250,000. The submission window opens super soon, so read on to learn about the competition and start prepping your applications today.

Who can win?

The ULIEA competition is open to eligible 501(c)(3) organizations in the U.S. and Canada and awards will go to applicants best using innovative STEM (Science Technology Engineering Math) curriculum to help kids grades K-12 solve real-world environmental issues (E-STEM). There are some budget and affiliation restrictions, too, so be sure to read all terms of eligibility.

The best part? ULIEA is different from money-based awards/grants in that we don't require winning programs be "new." Nope - we want to award orgs for the amazing work they've been doing all along, to call them out as leaders in their field and to help keep them going strong (or expand).

2016 ULIEA Winners
2016 ULIEA Winners

Who has won in the past?

The 2016 grand prize winner, NY Sun Works Greenhouse Project, brought hydroponic farming labs into public schools to help New York City students address urban food production challenges through engineering and problem solving.

Other 2016 winners include:

Click here to read about all of our 2015 and 2016 winners and finalists.

Who are the judges and what are the prizes?

A panel of environmental, science, research, and technical experts will determine one grand-prize winner to receive $100,000; two second-tier winners to receive $50,000 each; and two third-tier winners to receive $25,000 each.

How do I apply and when will the submission window close?

Eligible parties can fill out an application online soon, using the Apply button on our homepage. The submission window will close on February 28, 2017 and we'll publicly announce winners in August 2017.


UL, the global safety science leader, in collaboration with NAAEE founded the ULIEA competition in 2015 and have since awarded $500,000 to 10 non-profit organizations. We're investing in our youth and their engagement in local environmental issues and interest in engineering, technology, science and math. We also want to raise up organizations leading the way in environmental and STEM ed fields to help others learn from their successes.

"Thousands of kids from different backgrounds are getting excited about solving environmental issues in their communities - and that gets us excited! These award-winning programs are producing our future engineers, scientists, inventors, innovators and environmentalists, and we want to ensure funding for this world-changing work continues," says Cara Gizzi, UL director of education and outreach.

"Hands-on, project-based learning hones problem solving and other 21st century skills. There's a real opportunity to shape future generations here. That's why we hope to double our application pool in 2017 and reach organizations doing the most impactful work," says Christiane Maertens, NAAEE deputy director.