Scholarships and Financial Aid

Summer Writing Program Scholarships

Zora Neale Hurston Scholarship

The Zora Neale Hurston scholarship is awarded to selected students who identify as, or who have experience working with, people from diverse cultural and ethnic backgrouinds.  The award amount covers full tuition and housing costs for a shared room at Snow Lion Apartments (for out-of-state recipients) for one week of the Summer Writing Program (credit or noncredit).  A total of three recipients, with one week scholarships will be awarded.  Awards are based on exceptional literary merit and promise, as well as financial need.  Students from diverse cultural and ethnic backgrounds are strongly encouraged to apply.

Leslie Scalapino Scholarship

The Leslie Scalapino Award will be offered each year to one MFA Creative Writing and Poetics or MFA Creative Writing student attending the Summer Writing Program who has a body of work in the field of experimental postmodern women's poetry and poetics. Applicants must demonstrate financial need, be a United States citizen or permanent resident of the United States, and have a GPA of 3.5 or higher.

kari edwards Scholarship

The Summer Writing Program Scholarship in memory of kari edwards is offered annually to one credit or noncredit student accepted into Naropa University’s Summer Writing Program. Eligible applicants must be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident, and be involved in gender activism and writing experimental works.

The Institute of American Indian Arts Scholarship

The Institute of American Indian Arts Award is given annually to one current undergraduate student enrolled at the Institute of American Indian Arts, who will be attending the Summer Writing Program. The award covers full undergraduate tuition for the three weeks of the SWP and includes housing in Snow Lion at the shared room rate.

Amiri Baraka Scholarship

The Amiri Baraka Scholarship is offered to noncredit participants in Naropa's 2018 Summer Writing Program.  Each scholarship will cover one week of noncredit Summer Writing Program tuition and, if needed, a room in a shared apartment at Snow Lion Apartments for seven nights.  Three or more recipients, with one week scholarships, will be awarded.  Students do not need to complete a Financial Aid Application (FAFSA or International Aid Application) to be considered. Your personal essay should include your writing's connection to the work and legacy of Amiri Baraka specifically, and the Black Arts movement in general. 

  • How does your work continue the Black Arts movement's experiments in combining formal innovation and the dynamics of vernacular speech?
  • How does it transcend genre?
  • How does it speak for racial equality and revolutionary political commitments?

Students from diverse cultural and ethnic backgrounds are strongly encouraged to apply. 

The Margaret Randall Scholarship in Memory of Mark Behr

The Margaret Randall Scholarship in Memory of Mark Behr is offered annually to two non-credit participants in Naropa’s Summer Writing Program. Each scholarship will cover, one week of non-credit Summer Writing Program tuition and, a room, if needed, in a shared apartment in Snow lion residence hall for seven nights. The scholarships will be awarded to writers of extraordinary talent and promise. Students do not need to complete a Financial Aid Application (FAFSA or International Aid Application) to be considered. To apply applicants will need to submit a personal essay, 500 to 700 words in length, addressing their recent accomplishments, current projects, or publications of their work; and 5-10 pages of poetry, prose, or translation.

Students from diverse cultural and ethnic backgrounds are strongly encouraged to apply.

Apply for Summer Writing Program Scholarships

  • New students receive their MyNaropa username and password via email after submitting their Application to the program.
  • Students must log in to their MyNaropa account with their username (Student ID) and password.
  • Click HERE to be directed to the SWP Scholarship Application under "Public Registration" on MyNaropa.

All scholarship applications are due by April 1, 2018. All applicants will be notified of scholarship decisions no later than May 1st.

SWP Student Financial Aid and Student Employment Opportunities

Naropa Students

Degree-seeking students taking the program for graduate or undergraduate credit may be eligible for federal financial aid if enrolled for at least 6 credits (three weeks undergraduate credit, three to four weeks for graduate credit). Naropa BA and MFA student should complete the FAFSA by March 1. The FAFSA is available at

Students who request aid to attend the Summer Writing Program (SWP) are generally awarded enough aid to cover the cost of tuition and fees, with some funds available for books and/or living expenses. Federal regulations prohibit the release of student aid until a student is officially attending at least half-time (enrolled for at least 6 credits). Since students do not become half-time until the beginning of week three of the Summer Writing Program, their aid and refunds will become available at the beginning of that week. 

Students who need their refunds before this time, may fill out an advance request form from the Financial Aid Office. The earliest that a student may receive an advance is during week one of the SWP.

SWP Student Employment Opportunities

Naropa University MFA Writing & Poetics and Creative Writing students may be eligible for the following opportunities.

Student Instructional Positions

MFA Lecturer
An MFA lecture is one of the few opportunities that graduate students have to present scholarly and creative research during their degree program. Presenters should lecture on topics about which they are knowledgeable and passionate; subjects that complement the SWP programming. While we require the lecture to be in a standard format (not performance based)—all lectures must be 40 minutes with a 20-minute Q&A—we encourage you to utilize the multi-media capacities in the Performing Arts Center. Slides, primary source material from the Naropa University Audio Archive Project, etc. are a great way to make your presentation more engaging. Only MFA students are eligible for these positions. There is 1 position available. Specific times and locations of student lectures will be listed in the SWP Master Schedule. There is no financial compensation for MFA lectures.

Graduate Instructor
The graduate instructor position offers graduate students an opportunity to design and teach a writing workshop. Due to the fluctuating weekly populations of undergraduate students during the Summer Writing Program, graduate instructors have the unique challenge of creating a weekly workshop that can accommodate both students taking the program for one week or for all three weeks. Graduate instructors are responsible for attending weekly staff meetings (9–9:30 a.m. on Wednesdays) with the BA coordinator. The BA coordinator then leads a group session with all BA students and instructors. This session is scheduled from 9:30–10 or 10:30 a.m. After this session, students will split into smaller groups with each graduate instructor heading a discussion group of BA credit students from 10:30 to 12:30 p.m. Graduate instructors are responsible for commenting on final BA manuscripts. Only second- or third-summer MFA students are eligible for these positions. There are 2 positions available, depending on the number of BA students who enroll.

Student Staff Positions

Faculty Liaison
This position involves assisting visiting SWP faculty members or SWP staff with course packets, copying, in-town transportation to and from events, dealing with mail and messages, collecting interview materials and other areas in which the guest faculty member may need support. This position will not interfere with your workshops or classes as an SWP student. You do not need a car to be a FL, but one can sometimes be helpful. You do need to be attentive, respectful and prompt. Students will be paid a stipend for approximately 25 hours per week.

Student Activity Coordinator
The Student Activity Coordinator positions are a unique opportunity to help contribute to the Summer Writing Program curriculum. It’s a chance to represent the students during the Program and help develop events that are of interest to the entire community. Both MFA and BA students are eligible for these positions. There are two positions available. These positions involve planning and running all student readings and salons (1–2 per week), lectures (up to two per summer), panels (one per week) and special events throughout the Summer Writing Program. SACs listen to the voices of the student body and set up events that meet student interest. Students will be paid a stipend for approximately 25 hours.

Non-Degree Seeking Students

Students who are enrolled as degree-seeking students at another institution and are taking the SWP for credit, should contact the financial aid office at their home institution for information regarding eligibility.