Published: Feb. 18, 2020

The University Libraries and the Laughing Goat Coffeehouse are excited to celebrate their long-standing partnership and the Laughing Goat’s 15th anniversary this week by announcing a plan to provide new scholarships for student employees of the University Libraries. The Laughing Goat has generously endowed these new scholarships.

“Students are a big part of our day-to-day operations,” Dean of University Libraries and Senior Vice Provost of Online Education Robert McDonald said. “Both the Libraries and the Laughing Goat believe that providing student employees with this scholarship opportunity will benefit the students’ overall educational experiences at CU Boulder.” 

When the University Libraries renovated Norlin Library in 2008 to build the Learning Commons, students, faculty, and staff gained access to new technology, IT support, writing assistance, and collaborative workspaces. The Libraries and the Laughing Goat Coffeehouse also forged a partnership and the Learning Commons became a new home for the best coffeehouse in Boulder. This past academic year, the Libraries received 1.9 million visitors. A large percentage of these visitors pass through Norlin Library’s East entrance and the Learning Commons, and not without stopping for a latte. 

Students working at the Laughing Goat.

Jaia Wilbour, Luka Leonards and Nicci Moran working a morning shift at the Laughing Goat in Norlin Library.

"Our coffee shop's success is grounded in the community it inspires—in the writers, painters and musicians that define our space, and in the dreamers and thinkers who give it life,” John Jenkins, owner of the Laughing Goat said. “Students’ education is the backbone of our success, and we hope that these scholarships continue to inspire the creativity, discovery, and hope that make our space a home for students."

Through the years, The Laughing Goat owners have built strong relationships with many of the students and faculty who frequent the coffee shop. The owners were motivated by these individuals’ enthusiasm and thirst for knowledge, and inspired to find a way to support Libraries student employees. Both the Libraries and the Laughing Goat are invested in working with students to find innovative ways to explore how common spaces can transform learning in a 21st-century library. 

Norlin Commons

Norlin Commons is the Laughing Goat's only on-campus location in Boulder.

“Together the Laughing Goat and the University Libraries can utilize this unique relationship and build a partnership that enhances education, forms a stronger community, and creates a more generous space for all,” said McDonald. 

The new scholarships will be awarded to students who are employed with the Libraries or engaging with a project supporting the Libraries’ common areas and services to students. Details on the application and selection process will be announced later this spring and the first scholarships will be awarded in time to support students in the 2020–2021 academic year.

The University Libraries and the Laughing Goat Coffeehouse look forward to celebrating many more anniversaries of serving the campus community through their long and successful partnership.