Turn ideas into impact
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If you could change one thing, what would you change?

We believe college is a time to work on projects you're passionate about, whether that's health, education, social justice, poverty, environmental sustainability, or anything else you care about.

We are an organization at the University of Michigan that offers workshops, mentorship, and funding for students to create self-directed projects that make the world more just and sustainable.

Our primary program is the optiMize Challenge. It's an incubator for students to develop their projects. Projects can receive up to $20,000 — we awarded a total of $215,000 in 2018.

You can join the Challenge with a project you're working on, an idea you have, or just a problem you want to solve. And everyone is welcome. Whether you have lots of prior experience or none at all, our supportive community will help you take your next steps.

Or if you don't have your own project, you can also join our student-led Core Organizing Team.

Stop waiting for someone else to change the world.  Ask yourself "why not me?"

We support projects that illuminate possibilities.

We've incubated hundreds of student-led projects over six cohorts since 2013. 80 of them were funded with up to $20,000 to become optiMize Fellows. Learn more about how our optiMize Fellows are making an impact.

We're a supportive community.
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Our community is made up of students just like you! From first year students to PhD students, we all support each other as we develop our own self-directed social impact projects. And we get lots of help from our great mentors.