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Clinton Global Initiative University

Commitment Ideas

Here are some ideas to get you started on your Commitment to Action. However, these are only ideas. We welcome your creativity and ingenuity. It is entirely up to you what your commitment will be and how you will execute it.

You can browse these ideas by CGI U's five focus areas: Education, Environment and Climate Change, Peace and Human Rights, Poverty Alleviation, and Public Health. For additional examples, browse featured and funded Commitments to Action made by CGI U students since 2008.


  • Launch a scholarship and support program to facilitate girls' schooling in areas of the world where there are gender-based barriers to education.
  • Design an English language curriculum and stream lessons online so that isolated communities can learn English and gain access to international markets.
  • Counteract cuts to education funding by partnering with a local classroom and starting an after school club for students who do not have access to art and music programs in school.
  • Organize college undergraduates to mentor high school students on leadership development and college preparedness. Train the high school students to mentor elementary school students in their communities as well.
  • Build an educational curriculum, program, or product that addresses the specific needs of learners from transient communities, such as the children of migrant workers.
  • Partner with internet cafes or schools in communities with limited access to technology to provide computer literacy training to adult residents.
  • Develop a mobile application that addresses an educational issue and can be used by teachers and students.

Environment and Climate Change      

  • Design a workforce training program that enrolls unemployed residents in your community in training seminars in rapidly growing sustainability sectors, such as green building and alternative energy.
  • Establish community gardens in a nearby neighborhood. Circulate healthy recipes and encourage healthy eating habits to complement the gardening program.
  • Complete an intensive energy audit for your campus. Review the energy consumption patterns of your school, meet with your school's facilities department, and find the most practical methods for emissions reduction.
  • Construct a bicycle-powered laundromat in your dorm.
  • Build a beehive at your college or local school so that the bees will pollinate a school garden and students will learn about and benefit from fresh food.
  • Sell sustainable bamboo bicycles at an affordable price in an effort to reduce carbon emissions on campuses, and donate a bike to an underserved community for each bike sold.
  • Combat harvest waste by teaching farmers how to build and use solar dryers. Then show them how to store the dehydrated food to sell or eat in the off-season.

Peace & Human Rights

  • Create a local volunteer network that works with a local prison to provide tutoring, job training, or recreational classes.
  • Empower women to sell their cultural artwork to generate profit and increase the cross-cultural sharing of ideas.
  • Involve traditionally combative groups in a local football league that is supervised by a team of reconciliation supervisors in order to build stronger communities.
  • Compile more complete profiles of children in orphanages so that the children can be better matched with potential foster homes.
  • Organize photos taken by students into a book that illustrates different points of view on a conflict in order to raise awareness.
  • Host town hall meetings via videoconference between students, professors, and young leaders across conflict regions to cultivate forward thinking solutions.
  • Partner with law school students to draft legal briefs for those in your community seeking political asylum.

Poverty Alleviation

  • Work with law and business students to offer pro bono legal and financial services to the community surrounding your campus.
  • Hold a clothing drive on campus to provide low-income job applicants with professional clothing for interviews.
  • Create a rapid response food security monitoring and surveillance system with a partner region or organization overseas.
  • Collaborate with university administrators to create a socially-responsible MBA curriculum that works hands-on with local start-up ventures.
  • Provide business education and microloans to low-income, minority entrepreneurs to address unemployment and poverty rates in your community.
  • Collect sewing machines and materials and provide sewing classes so that residents of low-income communities can make their own school uniforms.
  • Respond to the U.S. mortgage crisis by providing residents facing home foreclosure with legal counsel and guidance.
  • Train individuals to start their own small businesses by creating marketable products from repurposed materials.     

Public Health  

  • Work with your school's health center and an international development organization to facilitate the donation of used medical equipment to hospitals in need.
  • Construct a rooftop rainwater catchment system to increase access to clean water.
  • Promote female empowerment by teaching women about menstruation and providing them the skills training necessary to sew reusable sanitary pads, so that women can conduct educational workshops in their communities and sell the reusable pads for profit.
  • Lead an after school healthy cooking class to teach students how to read recipes, measure ingredients, and gain healthy eating habits.
  • Bring together women in undergraduate engineering programs and female high school students for a mentoring program, through which they work together to build simple healthcare devices for under-resourced hospitals while also learning about career opportunities in STEM fields.
  • Use mobile technology to provide households in developing countries with information about local water deliveries to improve access to the water system.
  • Design a sexual health education campaign at your school. Hold workshops, distribute informational pamphlets, or make presentations to classes, clubs, fraternities, sororities, and other community partners.