General Questions

Do Norlin Scholars live in the same residence hall?

Norlin Scholars live all over campus. Many do choose Residential Academic Programs (RAPS), however, some students prefer non-RAP residence halls. Regardless, we advise you to turn your Housing request in early (before May if possible) for the best chance of getting your preference. 

Are there other programs I should know about and apply to at CU-Boulder?

There are a number of programs to consider: Residential Academic ProgramsHonors ProgramsPresidents Leadership Class (although, if admitted, you will have to choose either PLC or Norlin Scholars), as well as other experiental learning and research opportunities

Programming & Requirements

What does the program offer?

Norlin provides a $6,000 scholarship per student per year beginning in Fall 2018. But the Norlin program is much more than a monetary award. It's an investment in our students. Through our courses, activities and mentoring, we’ll guide you in becoming a mindful, healthy, well-balanced human being. You’ll be taught by teachers who are as curious as you are about what makes you tick; you’ll have opportunities for self-reflection and values clarification; and you’ll meet and interact daily with fascinating students, faculty and staff. You’ll add your story to theirs within a community that’s nurturing, supportive, challenging and fun.

What do students gain from the program?

Being a Norlin Scholar at CU-Boulder helps students mindfully develop their capacities to the fullest and prepares them to make a conscious contribution to the world. Students who participate fully gain self-awareness, balance and confidence; they flex their learning boundaries and get more comfortable with ambiguity and complexity. They enjoy intellectual camaraderie, establishing close and lasting friendships with other students and teachers. They’re encouraged to gain a broad perspective through working with organizations off campus, studying or volunteering abroad, or merging academic interests with community issues. In addition to the structured components of the program—courses, mentoring, and activities—students informally share music, art and other talents, having many opportunities to share their own knowledge, experiences and stories with the group. These skills and activities put students in a strong position for whatever comes next: the job market, graduate and professional schools or fellowships.

Does being a Norlin Scholar entail more work?

Yes. And we encourage you to consider seriously the expectations of the Norlin community on balance with other things you’ll want to do and other programs you wish to be in. Students who apply to Norlin tend to be overcommitted and can easily end up being pulled by the obligations of multiple programs and commitments. That said, Norlin requirements are mostly well-integrated into the undergraduate degree. One of our 3-credit courses fulfills A&S core curriculum requirements (Ideals and Values) and both may fulfill Engineering Humanities credits. Norlin Scholars engage in scholarly work, doing research in labs or working with faculty on studies and books; if they’re in a creative field such as Film, Dance, Writing, Art or Music, they’ll do creative work under the auspices of a faculty member. Because of that, the Norlin Scholars get much more from their undergraduate experience than the average student.

Will I be required to write an honors thesis?

You’ll be required to engage in research, creative or scholarly work, but it doesn’t have to be an honors thesis. Scholarly production varies from field to field. Our courses and the required research workshop series help students explore the major questions, problems and challenges of any given field which leads them naturally to inquire into the discipline through their own projects, whether that’s labwork, library research, human subject research or the production of music, art, writing, dance, theater or film. If you do write a thesis you’ll present that work at the SUEP undergraduate research conference. In fact, all students will eventually present their work. 

Will I have to reapply for the Norlin Scholarship every year?

No. But in order to keep the scholarship you must: make normal progress toward your degree (i.e. at a pace to graduate in four calendar years); maintain a cumulative grade point average of 3.25 or better and be registered full time (a minimum of 12 semester-based, on-campus credits); be an active participant in the program and fulfill all requirements; and adhere to CU’s professional, academic, and personal codes of conduct.

If I apply as a rising junior and have already done research or creative work on campus will that count towards my Norlin research requirement?

If you continue to work with a faculty member as a Norlin Scholar on the project you’ve begun, yes. If you’re no longer engaged in that project, no.

Can I be a Norlin Scholar and be in other programs or learning communities?

Increasingly students are participating in two or more programs or learning communities which generally is a disadvantage because each program has expectations, obligations and responsibilities, some of which overlap. For this reason students applying as high school seniors cannot participate in both Norlin Scholars and Engineering Honors Program (EHP) or Presidents Leadership Class (PLC). Other programs that present ongoing conflicts include Marching Band and Leeds Scholars. Students can certainly apply to a plethora of programs but we encourage you to commit only to the one that’s the best fit for you and that will enable you to reach your ultimate goals most directly. We discourage over commitment as it leads to untold challenges and stress for students. We value healthy, balanced college experiences.  By all means apply! Then choose later.

Application & Selection

Are there GPA or test score requirements to apply?

No. Although Norlin applicants tend to have higher than average high school or college GPAs and excellent academic credentials, we’re looking for students who are curious, inquisitive, creative and intellectually engaged. In order to keep the scholarship, students must keep a consistent GPA of at least 3.25 and be registered full time (a minimum of 12 semester-based, on-campus credits).

Will Norlin Scholars be selected based on financial need?

No.

Are ASSET and DACA students eligible to apply?

Yes. The University of Colorado Boulder and Norlin Scholars support the academic goals and success of all current and prospective students. Recognizing that ASSET and DACA students may need further guidance, the university offers this website as a resource for the entire campus community.

Is the Norlin application process separate from the CU Admissions application process?

Yes. After you have applied to CU you will be able to apply for CU Scholarships. Please note that it will take two days after you submit your CU application before you will have access to apply for scholarships

Will I have to reapply for the Norlin Scholarship every year?

No. But in order to keep the scholarship you must: make normal progress toward your degree (i.e. at a pace to graduate in four calendar years); maintain a cumulative grade point average of 3.25 or better and be registered full time (a minimum of 12 semester-based, on-campus credits); be an active participant in the program and fulfill all requirements; and adhere to CU’s professional, academic, and personal codes of conduct.

Can I apply as a rising junior if I’m in my third year at CU?

Generally rising juniors have completed only three semesters of college when they apply. That is, regardless of credit hours, they’re in their second year and would receive a two-year scholarship should they begin the next Fall as a rising junior Norlin Scholar. However, if you are going to be at the university for a minimum of two more years, starting with the Fall after the current application deadline, you may apply as a rising junior.

Can I apply as a rising junior if I’m in my first year of college but I have enough credits to qualify as a sophomore?

No. The baseline requirement to apply to Norlin as a rising junior is having three semesters of college. That is, regardless of credit hours, rising junior applicants generally are in their second year. Therefore, no matter how many credits you have, if you’re in your first year of college, you must wait until the subsequent year to apply.

If I apply as a rising junior and have already done research or creative work on campus will that count towards my Norlin research requirement?

If you continue to work with a faculty member as a Norlin Scholar on the project you’ve begun, yes. If you’re no longer engaged in that project, no.

Are there other programs I should know about and apply to at CU-Boulder?

There are a number of programs to consider: Residential Academic ProgramsHonors ProgramsPresidents Leadership Class (although, if admitted, you will have to choose either PLC or Norlin Scholars), as well as other experiental learning and research opportunities

What is the Application Deadline?

The Norlin Scholarship application is open from November 15th through February 15th. Please be aware that Scholarship Services will not guarantee access to the scholarship application by February 15th for CU applications received after January 15th. Additionally, although Admissions is extending the application deadline for transfer students to June 15th, the Norlin Scholarship application deadline remains February 15th for all applicants including transfer rising junior applicants.

When will I hear if I’m selected as a Norlin Scholar?

Notification usually occurs in early April. Notification either way will arrive by email so be sure to check the email address you put on your application regularly.