Interested in developing skills for academic and professional careers through community-engaged research, teaching and creative work?

The EAH scholars program helps students apply the tools of their academic disciplines and their unique interests to community-engaged scholarship projects and provides funding for this work.

The EAH Scholars is a yearly cohort for up to six graduate students in the arts and humanities or interdisciplinary areas. No prior experience with engaged scholarship is required, only an interest in and ability to apply the tools of an arts and humanities discipline and the student's life experience to work with Colorado communities beyond the university.  Applications for the cohort are due every March. 

A key program goal is to develop a strong cohort and community of learners committed to supporting each other's journey in practicing community-engaged scholarship.

Participant Benefits

  • Receive a stipend for participation ($1,000) and funding (up to $1,000) for projects that partner with Colorado communities.

  • Develop skills for academic and professional (non-academic) careers and grow your public and academic visibility

  • Creatively apply the tools of arts and humanities disciplines to community interests and build mutually beneficial relationships with community partners.

  • Learn how to engage communities in the co-design of community engaged research, teaching and creative work. 

  • Broaden your networks and receive mentorship from artists, nonprofits, leaders, academics and community members statewide.

Program Information

A committee composed of faculty and staff from the Office for Outreach and Engagement, CU Engage and the Graduate School, as well as a community representative and former cohort member selects the students and serves as an advisory group to the program. Contact Lisa Schwartz, program lead, with any questions or for additional information. The EAH program was launched in 2018. In spring 2020 we will welcome the third EAH scholar cohort. 

Review the sections below for important information about benefits, eligibility and requirements that elaborate on the scope of participation. Learn more about the student cohorts by visiting their individual scholar pages.

  • Applicants must be enrolled graduate students in the arts and humanities at CU Boulder. You must be enrolled for the timeframe of the cohort, spring 2020 through fall 2021. Preference may be given to those enrolled in PhD or MFA programs in the division of the arts and humanities. However, for this year's cohort, candidates from interdisciplinary programs who engage the arts and humanities in their work are also highly encouraged to apply.
  • Prospective EAH Scholars are not required to have prior experience with engaged scholarship. They are required to have a strong interest in applying the tools of an arts and humanities discipline and the student's unique experience to this work, and a strong commitment to developing themselves as a member of a cohort who fulfills all of the requirements of the program (see below, e.g. meetings, activities). Students who are solely seeking funding for community-engaged scholarship projects, and are not committed to or developing a community of learners and receiving mentorship should apply for outreach funding rather than this cohort.
  • Students who have already been part of this cohort or the CU Engage Community-Based Research (CBR) Fellows are not eligible. We will ask those who are accepted into the EAH scholars cohort not to apply to the CBR fellows program in the same year. In the event that a student does apply to and is accepted into the CBR Fellows, they will be need to immediately choose which program they want to remain in, as they cannot be in both. 

The cohort will meet to develop partnership plans and engage in professional development activities over summer and early fall of 2020. Cohort members will have summer 2020, academic year 2020–21, and summer and fall 2021 to develop partnerships, develop an action plan, actualize a community engaged-scholarship "partner" project and present aspects of their work to the public.

Required Meetings and Events

While, the program is designed with an understanding of the needs and schedules of graduate students, the requirements and activities listed below are mandatory for participation and funding. Failure to comply with the requirements listed below will have pre-determined consequences that will be shared during the orientation. Events and meetings take place on campus or virtually where noted. There will be other opportunities and events that cohort members will also be strongly encouraged to participate in or attend. 

Required Cohort Meetings, Spring and Summer 2020

  • Friday April 10, 2020: Orientation retreat for 2020–21 cohort, approximately 10 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. (Unfortunately, if you cannot attend in full, you cannot be part of the cohort.) *Will be held virtually and length will be modified because of the change in format (due to current COVID-19 circumstances). In person time will be rescheduled. 
  • Friday April 17: Hone your pitch for academia and community partners and more (1-2:30pm). *Will be held virtually
  • Summer 2020 (May to August): Attend two required cohort meetings that the cohort will determine dates for together. Meetings will vary in length, but expect to commit an average of 4 hours per meeting. 
  • Meet individually with program lead Lisa Schwartz once before July 1, 2020. May be done virtually if needed.

Required Cohort Meetings, Academic year 2020-21 

  • Meet individually with program lead Lisa Schwartz once before November 15, 2020 and additionally as needed to finalize your project proposal. Can be done via zoom or in person.
  • Fall 2020 (Date TBD):  Meet one time with the cohort.
  • *Friday, December 4, 2020: Present your project proposal at a "critique" where you will get scored and receive feedback from campus and community members. Mandatory for project funding eligibility. 
  • Spring 2020 (Date TBD):  Meet one time with the cohort.

Additional Requirements

  • Final Presentation Fall 2021 (Date TBD): Present on your project to community partners, campus mentors and colleagues, likely during Research and Innovation week.
  • Participate briefly in the orientation for the 2021–22 cohort. 

Mentor-related Activities 

  • Between April 15 and July 15, 2020: Interview your community mentor about their community-engaged work and write up a blog post to be shared online (due by August 1, 2020). May be done in person, phone or video chat.
  • Between April 15 and Oct. 1, 2020: Do an advisory session with your mentor on your proposed community-engaged scholarship “partner” project (a partnership with communities on a project relevant to their teaching, research or creative work). May be done in person, phone or video chat.

Other required activities (EAH scholars profile pages, project proposals etc.)

  • Summer and academic year 2019–20: Provide Schwartz with content for your EAH scholars page (see example student pages from year 1); write one blog post on your project to be featured on your EAH scholar page. 
  • Summer and academic year 2020–21:  Complete your community-engaged scholarship project proposal. Work with the cohort, mentors and OOE program manager, Lisa Schwartz, to develop your project proposal. You must review your "partner" community-engaged scholarship project plan and budget with Schwartz in order to receive funding. These plans are not guaranteed to be approved if they do not meet the specific criteria of the Office for Outreach and Engagement. Plans and budgets are approved by the program lead and the director of the office. Before you receive funding you must add your program information to the Public Outreach and Community Engagement Website  and where applicable, add your program events to the CU Boulder events calendar
  • Complete evaluation materials from the program (ongoing).


If program requirements are met, the participation stipend is provided in two installments in summer 2020.

Partner project funding: The goal of the the "partner" project is to develop a mutually beneficial and shared activity with a community partner that leverages the student's scholarship and positionality. Funds up to $1,000 including GAIR will be made available for project proposals provided that all requirements are met. You must review your "partner" community-engaged scholarship project plan and budget with Schwartz in order to receive funding. These plans are not guaranteed to be approved if they do not meet the specific criteria of the Office for Outreach and Engagement. Plans and budgets are approved by the program lead and the director of the office and then a funding agreement is signed by the EAH scholar before funds are transferred to their department for project expenses. 

As an Engaged Arts and Humanities Scholar, graduate students will gain experiences in applying the tools of their discipline (research, teaching and creative work) to forge relationships and spaces for community interaction and dialogue. For some current thought on this type of work, see The New Work of Building Civic Practice, Michael Rohd, 2012 and the National Humanities Conference.

Our office has many potential partners across campus and Colorado with whom students in the cohort could develop partnerships (see example projects and partners below and on the students' pages). While students might partner with others on campus, the critical objective of the community-engaged scholarship "partner" project is to work with communities external to the Boulder campus and within Colorado. 

For example, students might listen to, document and share community members' stories in partnership with community members and organizations, or facilitate community members in doing this work themselves. Or, they might develop workshops, performances or creative work with communities. ​We have a wide network of existing partners and will support students in work with organizations in urban, rural and small town communities in Colorado that historically have less access to CU Boulder resources. In locations where changing community demographics, economies, landscapes, rising housing prices and gentrification are hot button issues, students' collaborative work could support the inclusion of diverse communities in local programming, important community conversations and/or opportunities to educate those from other locations. 

Below are examples of some existing projects and programs across campus and Colorado that students could partner with to support or extend their work and/or reach new communities. These programs are aware of and excited about possibilities and there are many more possibilities as well! ​

  • The Latino History Project 
  • Downtown Colorado Inc
  • The Colorado Creative Industries and/or one of the 23 Colorado Creative Districts around the state (e.g. Carbondale, Crested Butte, Denver neighborhoods, Greeley, Manitou Springs, Ridgway, Paonia, Pueblo, Steamboat Springs, Trinidad and more) on a multitude of projects, including a way to foment artist exchanges across Colorado, "space to create" projects, connections with local arts organizations and higher education institutions, public art and downtown spaces, ideas for creative district tours and more.
  • CU Boulder Lens on Climate Change Program, in its third year, works with youth who will primarily be first generation college goers to develop videos on how climate change affects their communities. Students could support video and story development as well as ways to share with communities.
  • Colorado Humanities 
  • The CU Boulder Upward Bound program that serves indigenous stuents from the U.S. West.
  • The Boulder County Arts Alliance works on advocacy for the arts, spaces for artists to work and share their work in Boulder and diversity and equity focused professional development for the local community, as well as other areas.

Please have the following information ready before you begin the online application. The deadline for the 2020–21 cohort is March 1, 2020 at 11:59PM. Apply here.

Section One

  • Personal contact information.
  • Contact information (email and phone) for two CU Boulder professors who could serve as references. Indicate your relationship to the professors that you list (advisor, mentor etc.).
  • Program affiliation (if you are not in the divison of the arts and humanities you will be asked to elaborate on how you use the tools of the arts and humanities in your work).
  • Your CV (this is solely to give us a general idea of your background) and any social media / person web sites.
  • Where you are at in your program and expected graduation date.

Section Two

Commitment to attendance for key dates (these are critical to the development of this cohort program and eligibility to remain in the program and receive stipends and project funds).

Section Three

Research and Interests

  • For an audience of academics in your field: How would you explain your research to others in your discipline? (250 words or less). PhD or MFA Program Department and name of your program area if applicable *
  • For a public audience: How would you explain your research to a public audience? (250 words or less)
  • What are your career goals? (150 words or less)
  • How do you think your disciplinary skill set, interests and experience might connect to the public or be applicable to community engagement? How do you think you will use the tools of the arts and humanities for project work? (250 words or less)
  • Why are you interested in this program and what are your goals for your participation? (350 words or less)
  • What questions do you have for us? (150 words or less)