CSU Policy: Native American Scholars

Policy Title: Native American Scholars Category: Student Affairs
Owner: Vice President for Diversity Policy ID#: 8-1060-001
Vice President for Diversity
Web: http://diversity.colostate.edu/vice-president-for-diversity/
Phone: (970) 491-6849

Also Contact:
Vice President for Enrollment and Access
Web: http://vpea.colostate.edu/
Email: vpea@colostate.edu
Phone: (970) 491-2682
Original Effective Date: 5/31/2011
Last Major Revision: 6/8/2013
Print Version: Click Here to Print


The purpose of this policy is to authorize an award program (“Program”) for non-resident students who are (i) members of federally recognized Native American Tribes with historical ties to Colorado, or (ii) transferees from a Tribal College or Tribal University (provided that the student is also a registered member of a federally recognized tribe). A student who qualifies with either of these two criteria, and who cannot be classified as an in-state student for tuition purposes, will be eligible for this Program.


This Policy applies to Eligible Students who enroll as degree-seeking students for Fall semester of FY 2011-12, or any semester thereafter. Students who are currently enrolled at the University, and who otherwise qualify as Eligible Students under this Policy, are eligible for this Program effective as of Fall semester, 2011-12, but shall not be entitled to any additional refund, discount or compensation for any prior term in which they were enrolled.


This policy does not apply to students enrolled in Continuing Education programs or other courses for which tuition is assessed without regard to residency, or to any student who is not classified as a non-resident for tuition purposes in the semester for which the scholarship is requested.


  • Eligible Student means an undergraduate or graduate, degree-seeking, non-resident student who establishes by evidence satisfactory to the University that he or she is either (i) a registered member of a Federally-recognized Native American Tribe with Historical Ties to Colorado, or (ii) a transferee from an accredited Tribal College or Tribal University who is a registered member of any federally recognized tribe and who has at least 30 completed, transferable course credits.
  • Federally-recognized Native American Tribes with Historical Ties to Colorado (or “Legacy Tribe”) means: (i) any of those tribes designated by the Colorado Commission on Indian Affairs as having a legacy of occupation in Colorado; and (ii) any other tribe with whom the University has a valid agreement at the time of enrollment to the effect that the tribe’s members will qualify for the tuition rate authorized under this Policy.
  • NAGPRA means the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act and its implementing regulations.


Colorado State University embraces the goal of supporting and creating diversity in our student body by recruiting Native American students. The objective of this Policy is to recognize and promote the importance of our land grant institution to Native American tribes with an historical relationship to Colorado. CSU currently has agreements with several federally-recognized Indian Tribes that provide for tuition rates lower than the current base, non-resident rate for qualifying student members of those tribes. In order to avoid the necessity of entering into and repeatedly renewing such agreements with numerous tribes, CSU intends, through this Policy, to join a number of institutions of higher education across the country who offer differential tuition more favorable than standard non-resident rates to Native Americans.

CSU currently participates in a multilateral compact with other western states, the Western Undergraduate Exchange (WUE) program, which provides a reciprocal tuition benefit to students of member states. This policy is a natural extension of the philosophy underlying the University’s commitment to WUE, specifically as applied to potential students who identify with a Native American tribe that is a federally recognized tribe with historical ties to Colorado. Undergraduate students who qualify for this program may not simultaneously receive WUE funds, nor the CSU President’s Scholarship, Provost’s Scholarship, or Dean’s Scholarship awards.

The Colorado Commission on Indian Affairs (CCIA), in cooperation with the National Park Services NAGPRA Grants Program, maintains a list of Tribes with a legacy of occupation in Colorado (the “Tribal Contacts List”) that identifies Indian Tribes with whom the state and its agencies typically maintain governmental relations and agreements. CSU should align its policy with these relationships, as well as those with other Tribes that historically have had agreements with CSU regarding tuition rates, but be flexible enough to respond to changes in these underlying relationships over time. Therefore, this Policy will apply to the Legacy Tribes named in the Tribal Contacts List, and any other Tribes with whom CSU currently has a valid agreement respecting tuition rates when this Policy is adopted, subject to such modifications as may be determined necessary and appropriate from time to time by the President (or the President’s authorized designee), after consultation with the Office of the General Counsel (OGC) and the Vice Presidents for Diversity and Enrollment and Access (VPD and VPEA).

Pursuant to this policy, CSU will provide a Native American Legacy Award to the Eligible Student in an annual amount equal to $500 less than the difference between the base nonresident and resident tuition costs (i.e., the student will be assessed an amount equal to the applicable resident tuition rate plus $250 per semester). For summer session, the amount will be prorated based on the number of credits taken. The scholarship will be credited against the student’s tuition and is not payable in cash, nor will the student’s final tuition rate, including all scholarships, awards and stipends, be reduced below zero. (Note: students in this program will not be considered Colorado residents and are therefore ineligible for a Colorado Opportunity Fund stipend under existing Colorado law).

Graduate students who are non-residents may also be eligible for this program. The Graduate School offers a Tuition Premium to students with Graduate Research Assistantship, Graduate Teaching Assistantship, and Fellowship Grant Trainee appointments, to pay the non-resident portion of the student’s tuition for the first year of enrollment. Eligible Students receiving such Tuition Premiums may receive this award only to the extent that it does not exceed the actual cost of tuition after the Tuition Premium is applied.


  1. The VPEA, Department of Student Financial Services and the Registrar’ Office will be responsible for working with the CSU Native American Cultural Center, the Office of the General Counsel, and the Vice President for Diversity (VPD) to identify those Tribes that meet the requirements of this Policy for its members to be Eligible Students each semester, and to establish the procedures, forms and requirements for applicants seeking to qualify for the tuition rate authorized herein.
  2. The student is responsible for self-identifying as a Native American of a Legacy Tribe at the time of application for admission and submitting supporting documentation at least 15 business days prior to the academic term for which the scholarship is requested. Scholarships will not be awarded retroactively.
  3. The Department of Business & Financial Services shall be responsible for managing the assessment of tuition at the rate specified in this Policy to students who timely qualify for that rate as determined in accordance with the preceding paragraph.
  4. The President shall be responsible for approving any changes to the list of Legacy Tribes whose members may be Eligible Students under this Policy.


Tribal Contacts List, Colorado Commission on Indian Affairs [http://www.historycolorado.org/sites/default/files/files/OAHP/crforms_edumat/pdfs/1550.pdf]


Approved on May 31, 2011 by Anthony A. Frank, President

Revision 1.01 approved June 18, 2013 by Amy L. Parsons, Vice President for University Operations


Print Version: Click Here to Print

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