The University of Colorado Boulder promises to offer enough grants to pay for the student share of tuition and mandatory fees, as well as an estimated work-study award to help pay for some of the other educational expenses.

Full Time Enrollment Exception for 2021-22
If you enroll less than full time in Fall 2021 or Spring 2022, CU Promise recipients will receive a prorated award amount. You must enroll in at least 6 or more hours per semester (half time or greater), or you'll lose eligibility. Full time enrollment may be required in future academic terms. Please note that other types of aid may require full time enrollment, so be sure to check the criteria or talk with our office before reducing enrollment.

The CU Promise will include a combination of grants, which in total will be enough to pay for the student share of tuition and mandatory fees. Grants included in the CU Promise are: Federal Pell Grant, CU Promise Grant, Colorado Student Grant and other CU grants. Students will also be offered work-study.

There are two steps to apply and one important deadline:
  • We strongly recommend you complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) (or ASSET financial aid application) by mid-February to ensure you are considered for all types of financial aid. Some funds are limited and provided first-completed, first-served.
  • Based on your FAFSA, we may ask for additional information about income and assets to determine eligibility for CU Promise. These forms or documentation must be submitted to our office by the deadline for each semester (listed below) to be considered for the CU Promise.


  • To receive the CU Promise in Fall, all documents are due August 1 prior to the semester. 
  • To receive the CU Promise in Spring, all documents are due December 1 prior to the semester.

If our understanding of your finances change (i.e. through changes to the FAFSA or with the additional information we've requested), you may lose eligibility. 

  • Colorado resident
  • U.S. Citizen or eligible non-citizen
  • Federal Pell Grant eligible (or eligible ASSET student with high financial need)
  • Demonstrated financial need (determined through FAFSA/ASSET Financial Aid Application & additional information requested by our office)
  • First-time freshman or a new student transferring from any CU campus or Colorado community college
    • Please note: Transfer students are only eligible if most recent transfer was from another CU campus or Colorado community college.
  • Admitted into an undergraduate degree program
  • Working on first bachelor's degree
  • Enrolled full time (12 hours per semester) on the Boulder campus

Grants are 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. Work-study is not applied directly to your tuition and fee account and must be earned on an hourly basis.

All CU Promise students must meet the following renewal requirements every year:

In the event a student does not meet the renewal criteria, he or she may appeal to the Office of Financial Aid only if there is an extenuating circumstance (such as death of a relative, an injury or illness, other).

Students may receive the CU Promise for up to 10 semesters, or until they complete their degree. Transfer students have a maximum timeframe to receive the CU Promise that is pro-rated based on the total number of credit hours transferred to CU Boulder.

Transfer Student Timeframe for CU Promise

Transfer Credits

CU Promise Eligibility


10 semesters


8 semesters


6 semesters


4 semesters


2 semesters

150 or more

Not eligible

If the student receives financial aid, but never begins attending classes, the Office of Financial Aid must return all disbursed funds to the respective federal, state and institutional aid programs.

Contact us if you believe you meet the eligibility criteria and did not receive the CU Promise.

Read the CU Promise FAQs for additional information.