About Us

Mission Statement:

Colorado Student Leaders Institute, an affiliate of the National Conference of Governor's Schools, is an academic summer residential program for high school students who are working to become quality leaders and who promote and inspire a strong United States of America. COSLI seeks to reinforce the importance of civic engagement, entrepreneurship, responsibility, accountability, ethics and integrity in the rising generation of American leaders.



  • COSLI is a four-week summer residential immersion collegiate academic experience;
  • COSLI offers Colorado students exposure to historic American roots along with the power of the free enterprise system;
  • Participants earn three hours of college credit;COSLI 2017 Senate.2


  • COSLI students complete two high school capstones, including a Colorado centric National History Day Colorado project;
  • COSLI students are given a Colorado centric civic challenge to be completed with the four week time period. Their reports are given to state and business leaders at the end of their session;
  • COSLI students will create and execute a business plan during the twenty-eight day program, donating a percentage of their profit to a Colorado non-profit;
  • COSLI supports students as they transition from high school to the rigor and freedom offered in a college or university setting;
  • COSLI offers college-level course work by a range of educators including university professors, business and community leaders, and the highest quality secondary educators. Participants earn three hours of college credit.
  • COSLI connects academically-inspired and civic-minded students from across the state;
  • COSLI creates a community for Colorado's future leaders.

Director's Letter

Dear Friends,

As the founding Director of Colorado Student Leaders Institute (COSLI), an affiliate of The National Conference of Governor's Schools, for three years I have had the privilege of working with community leaders, businessmen, educators, politicians and next door neighbors - along with thirty-four students from across Colorado, who have been working to make sure a Governor's School came to Colorado.

In 2008, my husband was transferred to a state where I was able to see one of the best of these fifty plus year old programs in action. It made such an impression on me that when my family was able to return home, it became my goal to be certain Colorado had this opportunity for our kids as well. So committed was I that I made a personal investment by emptying my twenty year teacher retirement accounts to partially fund the development. Not only is COSLI, Colorado's governor's school which is now established by SB-290, important to me as an educator, it is personal. A similar opportunity when I was in high school opened a world for me that pushed me to pursue goals my family never thought possible for me and my siblings. Being exposed to peers from around the country with different perspectives challenged me in ways I didn't know I didn't know and I became the first woman in my family to graduate from college, in addition to advanced degrees.

Every educator will tell you that the classroom is key to each child's foundation. But, I will say with great vehemence that the out of school/summer and extra opportunities are equally important. In Colorado, making sure that at least 50% of COSLI students are free and reduced lunch eligible or first generation college attendees will create an even more meaningful impact. 

COSLI is a wise investment in our kids.   Our fiscal requirements are right at $105 per day per student for an all-inclusive twenty-eight day program which allows this democratizing experience for all. That puts us in the lower dollars being spent among all states, while offering what I would call among the highest level programs, including 3 hours of college credit (majors in STEAM and International Social Studies), a high school capstone project with National History Day, an entrepreneur project in partnership with YouthBiz and Young Americans Bank and CHSAA endorsement.

This is an investment in our kids we must make - take a look at the states already offering such a comprehensive opportunity. Surely we can keep up with them - Arkansas, Louisiana, Wyoming, Mississippi, Alabama, South Dakota, Vermont, New York, Virginia, Pennsylvania, North Carolina, Kentucky, Tennessee - to name a few. We hope you'll consider making COSLI part of your annual giving commitments - take a look at the kid's link project this year.  Help them break the record!

Thank you! Celeste Archer, Founding Director, Colorado Student Leaders Institute

Anti-discrimination policy

Colorado Student Leaders Institute believes that one of the great strengths of this country is the rich diversity of its residents. COSLI does not have, and will not adopt or implement, any personnel policy or practice that discriminates on the basis of race, religion (creed), national origin (ancestry), color, age, gender, sexual orientation, marital status, citizenship, disability, political affiliation, military status, veteran status, belief, or any other protected status. This policy includes but is not limitedto hiring and firing of staff, selection of students selection of volunteers, selection of vendors, and provision of services.