Green and safer product chemistry grants

Green Chemistry & Engineering internship

The application period for this opportunity in summer 2019 is closed.

Grantee: Healthy Building Network
Project: Expanding Healthy Building Network’s Pharos and Data Commons tools
These tools accelerate the assessment and selection of alternatives to toxic substances by product makers and purchasers, including substances on the Minnesota Chemicals of High Concern and Priority Chemicals lists. In summer 2019, the intern is working to add new data sources, individual chemicals, chemical groups, and other features to the tools. These data will provide significant value by helping the many companies now using the Healthy Building Network tools to avoid costly “regrettable substitutions,” where a known hazard is replaced by a similar chemical with the same or worse hazards. Work will continue through August.

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Through these grants, both the company and an intern gain experience in advancing the practice of green chemistry and engineering within the host company, applied to one or more of the company’s products or components in any way that supports improved product safety.

Grant projects may include work like this:

  • Life cycle comparison of candidate materials
  • Support safety and/or performance testing of alternative materials or designs
  • Work with design, manufacturing, and cross-functional teams to assess the supply and cost of new materials
  • Catalog supplier safety data sheets and certifications as part of green/sustainable purchasing initiatives
  • Update inventories of chemical regulations and support audits of internal and supply chain compliance
  • Learn and perform hazard and alternatives assessment processes
  • Support sales and marketing of reformulated products

MPCA staff work with partners across North America to recruit students or recent graduates from scientific/technical programs at universities and colleges, creating a pool of candidates from which the company awarded a grant may select for interviews and an eventual offer for their position. Companies may also recruit independently. The intern works with a mentor within the company for 10-12 weeks during the summer—or beyond that, if the company and intern agree.

Past projects