Estimated costs for Fall 2017 Semester

Tuition & FeesCosts
Student Services$2,925
Administrative Fee$840
Total $15,000
Food + laundry + local transportation (Estimate)

Other Expenses: All living expenses including food, laundry and transportation are estimated based on typical costs in Boulder, CO. Actual cost will vary depending upon your standard of living and lifestyle. This portion is not paid to Watson.

Housing: Living on campus is mandatory. Please contact Andrew Lippi with any questions regarding housing at

Required Technology: Wireless internet is included in the residential fees, however, having a laptop is essential to your learning at Watson.

Health Insurance: For Fall 2017, all scholars are required to have health insurance, which is offered through Watson at cost if the scholar does not already have insurance.

Travel Costs: Watson Scholars are responsible for their travel to and from Boulder, CO at the start and end of each semester.

Degree Track Tuition: For those on the Lynn University degree track, additional tuition of $800/course is paid to Lynn for core courses (60 credits, 20 courses). The entire Lynn education costs $16,000, spread over the course of 2.5 years. For this portion, students are encouraged to fill out the FAFSA to apply for federal financial aid.

Financing Options

We strive to make Watson an affordable option for everyone who is accepted into the program. Approximately 90% of our students have utlized at least one of our offered financing options or are on some form of scholarship to attend Watson.

Income Sharing: Watson offers an innovative income sharing option for select candidates. Income sharing is a new way of financing higher education which ensures our alumni can both afford Watson and graduate without debt. Here is how it works: Only once scholars graduate from Watson and start earning more than a minimum salary threshold do they begin paying back a percentage of their income for a set number of years. There is no debt involved and payments do not start until alumni begin earning more than the minimum salary threshold. Such a structure means that WatsonU is truly accountable to our alums in the future – our success is based on your success. What is more, income sharing gives our alumni the flexibility to build their ventures, travel, and create their ideal career without being burdened down by debt and growing interest payments on the day they graduate. We have piloted the income sharing program for approximately 2.5 years and are now launching it on a larger scale this coming Fall semester. We are looking for select students who want to pioneer this new model of financing higher education with us.

Crowdfunding: All scholars are given the option to finance part of their tuition through the Watson crowdfunding platform to allow their contacts to support them through their donations.

Work Study: Watson selectively offers a work study program for exceptional scholars with financial need. Work Study Scholars work 10 hours per week with the Watson team while enrolled and are awarded a $2,500 scholarship per semester to go towards their tuition for this work.

Fellowships, Scholarships & Aid

In addition to our unique financing options, Watson also offers scholarships for both merit and financial need, as well as highly selective full-ride fellowships based on place of origin or venture issue area.

Fellowships:  Watson offers five full ride ($15,000) fellowships each semester.

  • The Enlight China Fellowship: For applicants from greater China, including Taiwan and Hong Kong
  • The Enlight Women Fellowship: For applicants working to increase access and quality of education for women and girls
  • The Luff Peace Fellowship: For applicants working to promote peace globally
  • Watson Middle East Fellowship: For applicants from the Middle East
  • Lakota Fellowship: For Lakota youth applicants

Merit Scholarships:  Watson selectively offers merit scholarships for scholars with exceptional track-records in the social impact space and ground-breaking ventures. All applicants are automatically eligible for all merit Scholarships and Fellowships and do not have to submit additional information.

Need-Based Financial Aid:  On top of awarded merit scholarships, Watson offers need-based financial aid for accepted applicants upon completion of our internal Financial Aid Application and accompanying documentation. Application will be made available to Watson finalists.