A new way to pay for your University of Colorado Boulder education

CU Engineering is standing behind student success with income share agreements (ISAs). With a CU Engineering ISA, you’ll only pay when you succeed.

The College of Engineering and Applied Science is committed to your future. Through our ISA program, you can access up-front tuition funding for your CU education. In return, you’ll make up to 81 monthly income-based payments. You’ll only pay in months you meet the minimum income threshold ($3,333.33/month, equivalent to $40,000/year), and as long as you remain in compliance with your ISA, you’ll never pay more than 1.55x the funding amount you received. Browse this site for more information, and visit the Resource Center for additional materials to help you navigate ISAs. For more information or an invitation to apply, contact CU Engineering's Scholarship Office.

What Is an Income Share Agreement (ISA)?

University of Colorado Boulder’s ISAs are contracts between you and the university that provide funding for your education. In exchange, you agree to share a fixed percentage of your future gross monthly income after you leave school. Here are some of the key terms you should know before you sign an ISA:

ISA Amount
Amount funded to your student account
Income Share

Percentage of your gross monthly income you will share when monthly payments are required

Maximum Number of Monthly Payments
Greatest number of monthly payments you could be obligated to make
Payment Cap
Maximum amount you could be obligated to share*
Payment Window
Number of months after your grace period ends, before your ISA obligation automatically expires
Minimum Income Threshold
Minimum gross monthly income you must earn to trigger a monthly payment ($3,333.33/month)
Grace Period
The six months after you leave school before payments start

Benefits of an ISA

  • Income-based payments: When your income is low, your ISA payments scale down with your earnings.
  • Downside protection: You’ll only make payments in months when you meet the minimum income threshold.
  • Built-in ISA expiration: If your payment window closes before you reach the maximum number of monthly payments or payment cap, your ISA will automatically expire, provided that you’ve made your payments as required whenever you earned above the minimum income threshold. Your contract may expire even if you’ve paid less than your initial funding amount or nothing at all.

Becoming the premier destination for every engineering student in Colorado requires that we help provide the resources they need to succeed — academically, emotionally and financially. Our new income share agreement program provides another supportive mechanism to ensure that students from all backgrounds can complete their education and launch their careers. We know that CU Engineering graduates create solutions that drive the economy, security and quality of life of our state and nation. The ISA program is a solution for our graduates that makes sure they have that opportunity.

Keith Molenaar, Interim Dean

Keith Molenaar Interim Dean

Fulfilling an ISA

To fulfill your ISA obligation, you’ll either make the maximum number of monthly payments or hit the payment cap—whichever comes first. Plus, if your payment window closes before you fulfill either of those obligations your ISA will automatically expire, even if you’ve paid little or nothing at all.

Maximum Number of Monthly Payments

Your ISA will define a maximum number of monthly income-based payments. Once you make that number of payments, your ISA ends—even if you’ve paid less than the initial funding amount.

Payment Cap

Over the course of making monthly income-based payments, you may hit the payment cap. If you hit the payment cap, you fulfill your ISA*—even if you’ve made fewer than the maximum number of monthly payments.

Getting Started

Here are the steps to take if you’re interested in learning more about an ISA.


Evaluate all your financing options

Visit the Student Resources page to find a Financial Fitness Quiz and other ISA resources. Consider your available options.


Contact an advisor

Consult with the College of Engineering and Applied Science’s Program Manager for Scholarships and College Affordability and a trusted financial advisor about whether an ISA is right for you. If you decide you want to sign an ISA, ask for an invitation to apply.


Complete your ISA registration.

You’ll receive an email invitation to register for your ISA. Review the terms and, if you choose to proceed, sign the contract digitally. Your ISA amount will then be credited toward your tuition on the designated disbursement date(s).

Contact an Advisor

Complete the form below, and a dedicated advisor within the College of Engineering and Applied Science will reach out to answer your questions and help you apply for an ISA.