The program, a cooperative effort between the City and the University of Alberta (UofA), started in 2015 with six projects. Already in its sixth year, the program continues to gain in popularity, with most City Departments experiencing the program in some way by now! In 2019 there were 26 Sustainability Scholars, 19 being mentored by City of Edmonton staff, two by the University of Alberta, and five more projects being mentored by other organizations: City of Spruce Grove, Edmonton Federation of Community Leagues, Lafarge Canada, and Stantec.
All Scholars are paid to complete a designated project over 250 hours between May 1 and August 15.
In September, staff are invited to submit a research project proposal. In December and January, UofA graduate students are invited to apply for projects posted on a UofA website. This same cycle will start each fall, culminating in student presentations in mid-August the following year.
Overall, the City and the University are interested in creating opportunities for sharing information and ideas between students and professionals to advance sustainability goals; advance professional development opportunities, especially in the area of sustainability; inspire graduate students to apply their learning to real world challenges; develop relationships; and support the development and implementation of sustainability goals of the City and the University of Alberta. View past research projects at University of Alberta.