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How to Apply

This is a posting for one Graduate Student Instructor (GSI) at 25% FTE.

Please submit the following application materials as one .PDF document to Dropbox by copying and pasting the following link into your web browser:

1) a cover letter addressing interest and qualifications for the position
2) a resume or curriculum vita
3) copy of the undergraduate and graduate transcript (unofficial is fine)
4) teaching history (list course and department)
5) any available teaching evaluations

Name the .PDF file as follows: last name.first name.course number. For example: Doe.John.Environ391

Verify your own course schedule against the schedule for the course to which you are applying as a GSI. All GSIs are required to attend the lecture and discussion times as posted.

Course Description

This interdisciplinary, capstone course explores environmental (and, to a lesser degree, social and economic) sustainability in higher education generally and at the University of Michigan specifically in a dynamic, interactive way. The course draws upon theory and practice in environmental management, organizational change, systems thinking and social advocacy.  Students conduct a substantial, hands-on group project in conjunction with a university sponsor as the core component of the course. Through site visits, guest lectures, discussions, lectures and this project, this course aims to address the real life challenges of campus environmental sustainability, using the campus as a microcosm of larger society. This course focuses on active, participation-based learning, and students should leave the course with an understanding of the campus as a lever for environmental change and the complexities of management for sustainability as well as with the personal tools to act as change agents.  Details about this course, including past syllabus and projects, available at


  •  Attend all lectures and discussions
  • Complete all readings
  • Meet with instructor once per week (1 hour)
  • Assist with preparation of course materials, including updating lecture and discussion material
  • Assist with all small group discussions/role plays
  • Meet with student teams throughout the semester, providing feedback prior to and after meetings
  • Communicate with 4-8 project sponsors 2-3 times per semester
  • Support evaluation of course participation
  • Create and manage content on course website, including the return of graded materials
  • Hold at one office hour per week
  • Grade a subset of individual and team assignments

Required Qualifications*

  • Coursework in Organizational behavior & management; Sustainability theory; Social advocacy; Campus Sustainability
  • Intermediate competency in Word & Excel as well as in using Canvas
  • Applicant must be in good standing as a graduate student at the University of Michigan. If the language of instruction at a students undergraduate institution was not English, they must be evaluated  by the English Language Institute (ELI) for English proficiency and either pass the GSI-OET or have this  test waived by the ELI before they can be eligible for a GSI appointment in LS&A.

Desired Qualifications*

  • Strong preference and priority given to applicants with experience in campus sustainability.  Professional experience in this area preferred to volunteer experience.  Ability to provide a unique and valuable perspective in this field during the course is highly valued.
  • Although previous GSI teaching experience is NOT required, experience is successfully instructing and mentoring students in traditional or non-traditional settings is desirable.
  • Demonstrated experience in student project management or professional consulting project management preferred in order to provide professional guidance to student project teams
  • Demonstrated experience in social advocacy/change that is applicable to campus sustainability
  • Experience in evaluating and critiquing student writing

Contact Information

Instructor: Sara Soderstrom,

Decision Making Process

Faculty review applications for positions in their courses and indicate their ranked preferences. They are also asked to indicate whether they regard any applicants as unqualified and why.

Selection Process

The Associate Dean or his/her designate reviews GSI assignments based on instructor and student preferences. Faculty preferences are heavily weighted in the GSI selection process in order to satisfy course needs. If the matching process changes the rank of the students being selected (especially for courses with multiple GSIs), then the instructor for the course is consulted about these changes. After this, a final review of allocations is made by the Associate Dean.
The Fellowships and Grants Advisor will notify successful applicants within four to six weeks of the application deadline. Applicants may contact to request feedback on their unsuccessful application.


GEO Contract Information

The University will not discriminate against any applicant for employment because of race, creed, color, religion, national origin, ancestry, genetic information, marital status, familial status, parental status or pregnancy status, sex, gender identity or expression (whether actual or perceived), sexual orientation, age, height, weight, disability, citizenship status, veteran status, HIV antibody status, political belief, membership in any social or political organization, participation in a grievance or complaint whether formal or informal, medical conditions including those related to pregnancy, childbirth and breastfeeding, arrest record, or any other factor where the item in question will not interfere with job performance and where the employee is otherwise qualified. The University of Michigan agrees to abide by the protections afforded employees with disabilities as outlined in the rules and regulations which implement Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Americans with Disabilities Act.

Information for the Office for Institutional Equity may be found at and for the University Ombuds at

Unsuccessful applications will be retained for consideration in the event that there are last minute openings for available positions. In the event that an employee does not receive their preferred assignment, they can request a written explanation or an in-person interview with the hiring agents(s) to be scheduled at a mutually agreed upon time.

This position, as posted, is subject to a collective bargaining agreement between the Regents of the University of Michigan and the Graduate Employees' Organization, American Federation of Teachers, AFL-CIO 3550.

Standard Practice Guide 601.38, Required Disclosure of Felony Charges and/or Felony Convictions applies to all Graduate Student Assistants (GSAs). SPG 601.38 may be accessed online at , and its relation to your employment can be found in MOU 10 of your employment contract.

U-M EEO/AA Statement

The University of Michigan is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer.

U-M COVID-19 Vaccination Policy

COVID-19 vaccinations, including one booster when eligible, are required for all University of Michigan students, faculty and staff across all campuses, including Michigan Medicine.  This includes those working remotely and temporary workers.   More information on this new policy is available on the U-M Health Response website or the UM-Dearborn and UM-Flint websites.