College Scholars Program

Updated September 2023

The UC Santa Cruz College Scholars Program (CSP) provides a stimulating home for highly motivated students to have community with like-minded peers during their first and second years as they explore research at a research university. Each year, we recruit and support a diverse cohort of College Scholars across all five academic divisions and all ten colleges who show potential to cultivate academic and non-academic strengths in a learning community. Between 20 and 25 students are housed in close proximity in each college and together participate in an enriched program of study designed to prepare them to take advantage of opportunities for undergraduate research at the upper division. Across four quarters, students have access to supplementary activities, special courses, small seminars, and a faculty research colloquium to explore what questions drive researchers and what forms research can take. To facilitate participation in these program requirements, CSP students receive priority enrollment during their time in the program. 

Researchers work in many sectors including academia, education and educational policy, foundations, government and public policy, housing and urban development, journalism, law, marketing and sales, medicine, public health, tech, and more!

College Scholars Admissions


Frosh: In Fall 2022, the College Scholars Program moved to admitting the full cohort of scholars in the fall quarter. Each year approximately 250 new frosh join the College Scholars Program. A selected group of frosh admitted to UC Santa Cruz are invited to join the program based on a variety of strengths evident in their application and with a mind to balancing the cohort across colleges and academic disciplines. 

The admissions office sends out the invitations and provides instructions on how students can accept the invitation when they accept their offer of admissions.  

If you have any questions, please email us at

Inquiries regarding the College Scholars Program can be directed to the College Scholars Program Coordinator at Virtual Slug Success appointments are also available.