Native American and Alaska Native students

Native students using the Native American Tuition Waiver to participate in FLC's engineering program, working in lab

About 45% of FLC students are Native American or Alaska Native, representing 185 nations, tribes, and villages. FLC consistently ranks as one of the most culturally diverse colleges, and its faculty, staff, and administration work to create a living and learning space supportive to the needs of all FLC students—one more reason FLC is a great choice for your college education.

Eligibility

If you have applied and been accepted to FLC, and are an enrolled member (or the child or grandchild of an enrolled member) of a Native American Tribe or Alaska Native Village that is recognized as such by the US federal government, you may be eligible to attend FLC tuition-free through the Native American Tuition Waiver (NATW). The NATW covers the tuition costs for Undergraduate, Graduate and non-degree seeking students.

Access your Native American Tuition Waiver

The first step is to apply to FLC and be accepted. Then, you may access your Native American Tuition Waiver in one of two ways.   

You are an enrolled Tribal Member

If you are an enrolled member of an American Indian Tribal Nation or Alaska Native Village recognized by the U.S. federal government, please upload your tribal enrollment documentation (such as both sides of your tribal enrollment card, CIB, or an official verification letter from your tribe with your enrollment number) to your Admission Portal (connect.fortlewis.edu/apply/status).   

 

You are descended from an enrolled Tribal Member

You may be eligible for the NATW if your parent or grandparent is an enrolled member of a an American Indian Tribal Nation or Alaska Native Village recognized by the U.S. federal government. In this case, please complete the Affirmation of Descendancy form and include your parent’s or grandparent’s tribal enrollment documentation.

 


Important financial information

NATW covers tuition only

If you are approved for the NATW, you will be able to attend FLC tuition-free. Please be aware that the NATW only covers tuition; you will be responsible for all other costs associated with attendance, including student fees and room and board (these additional costs are estimated to be $13,698 for the 2021-22 year). Additional personal expenses and books are also not covered by the Native American Tuition Wavier. Check out the Native American Center’s scholarships page for information about cost-of-attendance scholarships available to Native students.

Colorado residents

If you are a Colorado resident, the NATW will only cover the cost of in-state tuition. Make sure you also apply for in-state tuition (Colorado Opportunity Fund) so the NATW covers the full cost of your tuition.

Finding additional financial resources

Tribal Agency Scholarships

If you are a Native American student, please contact your tribal agency to find out how to apply for additional financial assistance. Most tribal agencies require that a student complete a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and submit a Financial Need Analysis (FNA) form. The Financial Aid Office can complete the FNA once your FAFSA is processed. The FAFSA takes time to process, so please fill it out well in advance of your FNA request. However, if the agency permits, we can provide budget forecasts to tribal agencies for students who do not have a complete financial aid file.

The Native American Center

Find additional scholarship opportunities through our Native American Center (NAC). What's more, the NAC also provides community, tutoring, and campus cultural events.


A brief history of the NATW

The old Fort Lewis property in Hesperus, Colorado was home to a military base and Indian boarding school in the 1800s. In 1910, the US federal government offered to hand the property over to the State of Colorado with the following stipulations: the property must remain an educational center and be inclusive of Native American students, who would be admitted tuition-free, and offered an education equal to that of other students.

Today, about 45% of FLC’s student population is Native American or Alaska Native, representing over 185 tribes and villages. In an effort to best serve our students, FLC is engaged in continuing efforts to indigenize its curriculum and the delivery of its education, and increase understanding of our collective journey forward.