CWS Program Updates

(Updated on 5/7/2020)

On April 1, 2020, the NHI Board of Directors adopted a policy to move some of the programs to a digital learning experience (online programs). The board emphasized the importance of “adopting practices that are in accordance with the guidelines, regulations, and rules intended to protect the public from the COVID-19 pandemic in order to ensure the safety and well-being of all of its participants, volunteers, and employees.”

Due to the current environment, the CWS will be broken up into two parts. The first is a summer digital experience (online) called the CWSx (League Series) and an in-person program (Thought Series) in Fall 2020 or Spring 2021.

NHI is a highly innovative leadership institute with a committed core of volunteer leaders. We support all of our enrolled students, and will do everything possible to make the digital experiences incredible!

For More Information

Contact Alma Raymer at or (512) 357-6137 ext. 204.

2020 CWSx Summer Program Dates

CWSx 1:  League Series

June 29-30, 2020
Sponsored by the University of Denver

Participating Colleges & Universities (updated 6/18/20)
American University, Baylor University, Elizabethtown College, Emory University, Florida International University, New York University, Schreiner University, Southwestern University, St. Edward’s University, St. Mary’s University (TX), Texas A&M University-San Antonio,  University of Denver, University of Northern Colorado, University of Pittsburgh, The University of Texas at Arlington, Vanderbilt University

CWSx 2:  League Series

July 22-23, 2020
Sponsored by University of North Texas

Participating Colleges & Universities (updated 7/2/2020)
Austin College, Cabrini University, Claremont McKenna College, Cornell University, DePaul University, Iowa State University, Macalester College, Rhodes College, St. Mary’s College of California, St. Mary’s College of Maryland, Swarthmore College, Texas State University, Texas Tech University, The George Washington University, University of North Texas, University of South Alabama

About The CWS

The CWS shepherds students into the transition of going into independent mode – adulthood – and the responsibilities that come with it. Inquiry-Based Learning (IBL) is the core methodology of this program, which engages students in an investigative and question-driven approach to mapping out the next 12 to 60 months of their lives.

Of NHI’s three high school leadership programs, the CWS represents the most serious and thought-provoking experience. It is also the program that tests students’ ability to transform challenges into workable solutions.

The Two-Part Learning Experience of the CWSx


THE LEAGUE SERIES involves a two-day summer digital experience (online) called the CWSx where top college admissions counselors from NHI’s College Register coach student participants on all aspects of the college admissions process. Making it fun while learning, the CWSx is organized into a league of competing students who are carefully taken through the various stages of college admissions, which include expert guidance on the common application, essays, interviews, letters of recommendation, financial aid, and resume/curriculum vitae.

THE THOUGHT SERIES (Spring 2021) shifts away from college admissions to personal life skill development and management. Knowing that high school students in their senior year will shortly be making the transition into college life, major attention is given to managing multiple factors that comprise decisions – even emotional, psychological, and cultural demands. CWS Education Directors make sure that students have a mental model for asking themselves serious, adult-like questions regarding life decisions. This process helps guide students in the complex, expensive, professional, and emotionally charged decision of college.

CWSx Tentative Summer Itinerary


This is a tentative itinerary of what students may experience for the CWSx program. Confirmed students will receive a final itinerary 30 days prior to the program.

Spring Training

Gain important skills and added capacities in preparation for the CWSx League Series and Thought Series. Begin thinking about portions of the college application, including the personal essay, college app resume, and more. 

Pre-Program (two weeks prior to the program)

To support students in preparing for their CWSx journey, NHI will provide instructions on which digital platforms will be used for the CWSx including instructions on how to load them on to a computer or mobile device.

Students are to create and submit a 15-second promo video for themselves which highlights their NHI involvement, outside accomplishments, key academic successes, and leadership qualities. All student videos will be reviewed by college admissions representatives in preparation for the CWSx team draft.

This year, CWSx participants will start their college essay and resume prior to the program, in order to receive the most effective and timely feedback possible from their college admission counselor coach.



The CWSx Educational Directors officially welcome students on a live video conference channel as well as introduce the program volunteer staff and the CWSx College Coaches.

Learn about the college admissions landscape during the COVID-19 era.

Coaches officially announce their CWSx team rosters and breakout into digital team meeting rooms. 

Gain valuable insight and personalized coaching into how to improve your college application. Compete as a team in the CWSx Game 1: College Application.

[2-3 Hour Lunch Break]


Game 1 team winners are announced.

Gain valuable insight and personalized coaching into how to build a strong supplemental college application resume. Compete as a team in the CWSx Game 2:  Resume.

Debrief in a Team Huddle with your CWSx Coach and prepare for Day 2 of competition.



Game 2 team winners announced.

Quick Team Huddle with your CWSx Coach to start the morning.

Gain valuable insight and personalized coaching into how to build a strong college application or scholarship essay. Compete as a team in the CWSx Game 3: Personal Essay

Participate in a live mock college interview (digitally) with an assigned college admissions representative in the CWSx Game 4: Interview.

[2-3 Hour Lunch Break]


Students participate in a live video Financial Aid workshop and panel presentation conducted by college financial aid representatives. 

For Parents (English) – A live video Financial Aid workshop and panel presentation conducted by college financial aid representatives.

For Parents (Spanish) – A live video Financial Aid workshop and panel presentation conducted by college financial aid representatives.

Game 3 team winners announced.

Join your team for a final Team Huddle to review Financial Aid and compete as a team in the CWSx Game 5:  Financial Aid.

Game 4 & 5 winners announced.

Students and parents are invited to view a live video broadcast of the League Series team and student winners.

How to Become a CWS Participant

If you are a college-bound 11th-grade student (graduating class of 2021) and have a minimum 3.2/4.0 (standard) or 4.0/5.0 (weighted) or 88/100 GPA or 8.8/10 GPA, with firm intentions of going to college, then you qualify for admission.

  1. Applying is just the first step. You can download an application by clicking here or you can apply online here.
  2. Once we receive the application, verification of your grades, and the $20 application fee, you will get notification of admission to the CWS. From there you will work with an NHI representative to make arrangements for tuition, complete the parent release forms, and set you up on our digital platform.
  3. Next summer you will be invited to participate in an online webinar, receive pre-conference reading materials, briefing book, and guidance on how to prepare for the CWS.

How Much Does the CWS Cost?

The CWS is NHI’s capstone leadership development experience. With a history since 1991, the CWS has a strong reputation among hundreds of parents, colleges, and high schools as accelerating student preparedness for college. Depending on the region of the country and university host, the CWS is estimated at a rate of over $1,350 per student and well worth it. The good news is that your expected family/school contribution is only $715, plus a $20 application fee. How is this program so affordable, when other programs charge as much as $2,000 for a week?

If you qualify for admission, our university partners underwrite a large portion of the costs before you even apply. We also have an annual team of investors and volunteers who contribute resources and donate their time. Together these resources help make the NHI tuition more accessible to families and school entities. In addition, applying early gives you more time to find resources for transportation. Space is limited, so stake your claim early with an upfront tuition payment or work with our team on another option.

Can I Fundraise My Program Tuition?

As you read above, the CWS would be much more expensive if NHI charged families for services that the university and volunteers provide. To make it even more accessible, half of NHI participants do some fundraising or find a school or community sponsor. NHI provides you all of the tools necessary to raise even a small portion of your tuition.

School or Program Sponsorship

Some students work as a group or are assisted by school clubs or administrators and get some portion of their tuition covered. Other times, families may petition their administrators or school districts for assistance. Different school-based programs that have supported NHI students in the past, include AVID, GEAR UP, Federal Programs, College Access/Readiness, Talent Seach, Upward Bound, and Migrant Education.

Community Sponsorship

NHI provides sponsor letters in English and Spanish that can be shared with community organizations and businesses. The intent of the letter is to explain the importance of investing in our young leaders, and that the young person seeking support is a top college-bound student. It also explains the tax benefits they can receive by donating to NHI as a 501c3 nonprofit organization in the United States. You can download this letter at 2020 CWS Sponsor Letter. You might want to visit local businesses that you and your family frequent.

Other times your parent’s employer may be able to invest and there are many nonprofit organizations that set aside dollars to support youth endeavors. Try looking up your local Hispanic/Latino Chamber of Commerce, groups like LULAC, ALPFA, SHPE, and even Latino resource groups within major companies in your town like Verizon, Seton, Coca Cola, IBM, Exxon and others.


Not that different from little league or everyone chipping in for a quinceañera, many NHI students raise their tuition by joining forces with family members, friends and supporters.

NHI provides an online tool that allows individuals to contribute as little as $5 to your tuition. With just a few minutes and clicks, you as an admitted student can customize a fundraising site and share it with close friends. Also, students can work with their parents and other supportive adults to tap their networks. You can choose to be creative and name your campaign to make it special. Afterward, thank all your investors and let them know how you enjoyed the CWS experience with a photo! Set up your fundraising page here.