As the flagship university of the state of Colorado, CU-Boulder is a dynamic community of scholars and learners situated on one of the most spectacular college campuses in the country. As one of 34 U.S. public institutions belonging to the prestigious Association of American Universities (AAU) – and the only member in the Rocky Mountain region – we have a proud tradition of academic excellence, with four Nobel laureates and more than 50 members of prestigious academic academies.
CU-Boulder has blossomed in size and quality since we opened our doors in 1877 – attracting superb faculty, staff, and students and building strong programs in the sciences, engineering, business, law, arts, humanities, education, music, and many other disciplines.
Today, with our sights set on becoming the standard for the great comprehensive public research universities of the new century, we strive to serve the people of Colorado and to engage with the world through excellence in our teaching, research, creative work, and service.
CU-Boulder's history is one of vision and determination-useful traits for pioneers dreaming of educational opportunities in the days of the Colorado Territory. In 1876, both the university and the state of Colorado were formally established. Forty-four students formed the first class, taught by three instructors. Situated on a "barren and wind-swept plain," Old Main housed not only the first classrooms, but the president's home, the library, and the janitor's quarters.
In the 130 years since that modest beginning, our university has blossomed in size and quality-attracting superb faculty, staff, and students to our breathtaking campus set against the Flatirons. We have built strong academic programs in the sciences, engineering, business, law, arts, humanities, education, music, and many other disciplines. Over the years, we have also claimed a number of Nobel laureates, MacArthur Fellows, and elected members of prestigious national organizations and academies.
Today, we embrace our role as the Colorado's flagship public research university. The rich interplay of ideas across academic boundaries on our campus has fostered a spirit of innovation and discovery that puts us in a unique position-both to serve the people of Colorado and to enhance the well being of humankind through excellence in our teaching, research, creative work, and service.