Presidential Scholarship

The Presidential Scholarship is awarded to out-of-state students who are in the top 1-3% of the admitted nonresident class at CU Boulder. Recipients may also be eligible for the Arts & Humanities Merit Scholarship. If you are selected to receive the Presidential Scholarship, you are not eligible to receive the Chancellor’s Achievement Scholarship.

  • $55,000 total ($15,000 per year freshman and sophomore year & $12,500 per year junior and senior year)

  • Four years (maximum eight semesters) for fall and spring semesters based on renewal requirements for each academic year.
  • You are limited to receiving a single semester’s award amount at a time. If you graduate in fewer than four years, the remainder of the benefit is forfeited. However, if you continue to be enrolled at CU Boulder in a graduate program, the scholarship will be extended until you have graduated or until you have utilized the maximum eight semesters of the award.

  • A completed CU Boulder Admissions application serves as the scholarship application.
  • Apply for admission no later than January 15.
  • Confirm intent to enroll by May 1 either through the MyCUBoulder student portal account or postmark by May 1.

Students selected for this scholarship will receive an offer letter with their mailed admission decision packet.

Didn't Get It? Be Reconsidered

  • You may submit updated official ACT or SAT test scores prior to May 1 to be reconsidered for the scholarship.
  • You may submit first semester senior grades prior to May 1 to be reconsidered for the scholarship. Second semester senior grades are not accepted.
  • Contact your regional admissions counselor to request reconsideration.
  • Offers are non-negotiable and are not increased to match offers from other institutions.

The scholarship is paid on a semester basis, and the funds for each semester will be credited to your CU Boulder tuition and fees bill provided that you meet the eligibility criteria.

  • Enroll in a minimum of 12 credit hours each fall and spring semester at CU Boulder.
  • If you are not enrolled in at least 12 credit hours at CU Boulder at the start of a semester as of the university’s census date (the third Friday of the semester), the scholarship will be cancelled effective with that semester and the remainder of the scholarship will be forfeited. The cancellation is permanent and the scholarship cannot be reinstated.
  • Courses taken for no-credit through Continuing Education and Professional Studies do not count toward the minimum credit hours.
  • Meet the Office of Financial Aid Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) standards.
  • Remain nonresident for tuition purposes.

  • Your eligibility to renew this scholarship next year will be reviewed at the completion of the spring semester.
  • Maintain a minimum cumulative CU Boulder grade point average (GPA):
    • 2.50 cumulative GPA at the end of freshman year (after the second semester),
    • 2.75 cumulative GPA at the end of sophomore and junior years (after the fourth and sixth semesters).
  • Remain nonresident for tuition purposes.
  • Successfully complete a minimum of 24 credit hours each academic year at CU Boulder.
  • Meet the Office of Financial Aid Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) standards.
  • A student must meet the renewal conditions for the next year based on credit hours earned in the previous fall and spring semesters and on the cumulative GPA at the end of the spring semester. Summer course work at CU Boulder does not count toward meeting the renewal standards. Please note: grades from summer courses taken at CU are included in your cumulative GPA, the grades will impact your eligibility at the end of the following spring semester.

  • You will be notified by postal mail around July 1 if you do not meet the renewal requirements at the end of a given spring semester.
  • You may submit a written appeal for reconsideration if you have extenuating circumstances (examples: serious illness, accident, death of a loved one, house fire, etc.) which contributed to your inability to meet the standards for renewal.
  • Appeals are decided on a case-by-case basis and the outcome of any appeal will depend on: the nature of the circumstances; the quality of the documentation provided; your current academic progress; the nature of any violation of the university’s Student Conduct Code; and fund availability.
  • Please note that if your appeal references sexual misconduct or protected class discrimination or harassment, the Office of Financial Aid is required to report allegations of this nature to the Office of Institutional Equity and Compliance in addition to considering your appeal on these grounds.
  • If the scholarship is cancelled due to failure to meet the renewal requirements, the cancellation is permanent and it will not be reinstated (i.e. even if GPA is above the minimum in a future semester), other than through appeal.
  • Appeals should be submitted no later than the first day of class of the term you become ineligible for the scholarship (typically the fall semester).

You may defer your admission to CU Boulder for up to one year and retain the Presidential Scholarship., You must contact the Office of Admissions to formally request a deferral.

Summer school is not typically funded. However, if you will be enrolled in summer school at CU Boulder in a minimum of six credit hours and meet the renewal criteria as of the end of the previous spring semester, you may request to receive a semester’s scholarship award in the summer in lieu of receiving it in the fall or spring. You must contact Scholarship Services to make the request. You will not be automatically credited with the scholarship.

  • You may use the scholarship for semesters in CU Boulder sponsored Study Abroad programs of at least 12 credit hours per semester.
  • The scholarship is not available for other Study Abroad programs.

  • Undergraduate, degree-seeking students are eligible to return to the University within 1-3 terms from their last graded semester without readmitting or reapplying for admission (read more at the Registrar’s website).
  • If you withdraw or are absent from the university and return within the allowable timeframe, you will be eligible to reinstate the scholarship upon your return, assuming that the renewal conditions have been met.
  • Withdrawal grades may impact your Financial Aid Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP).
  • It is your responsibility to contact Scholarship Services to request reinstatement. The scholarship will not be automatically reactivated upon your return.

  • The Cost of Attendance (COA), also known as the cost of education or "budget," is the total amount it should cost a student to go to school for one year/award period. This amount includes tuition and fees, housing and meals, and allowances for books and supplies, transportation, and personal and incidental expenses.
  • The total of any financial aid that you receive, including the Presidential Scholarship, cannot exceed your Cost of Attendance. If it does, you may have aid adjusted and/or cancelled, depending on your individual circumstances.

For more information contact Scholarship Services at 303-492-4533 or at