Frequently Asked Questions

Some answers to our most frequently asked questions can be found here.

If you have additional questions that were not answered, please feel free to reach out to us!


Q: When does it start and end? 

A: We try to cater the start and end days of our program to when universities start and end their summer breaks. Typically, our start date falls in between the second or third week of May and ends during the second or third week of August.

Q: I am a full time student with a part time job. Are there other students who work and partake in PURPLE?

A: Yes. Most of our students work while they partake in PURPLE. The main thing is working out the schedule ahead of time. PURPLE is a summer program that requires approximately 25 hours a week of time from the students. Work schedules are flexible and will be arranged in advance with faculty mentors. However, students are still expected to be digitally (or in-person when the time comes) present (e.g., attending digital meetings, completing work via computer, participating in digital class sessions, etc.) for 25 hours per week during the 12-week program.

QWhat will I get paid?

A: Pending available program funding, we provide a stipend of around $3,500 to individuals accepted into the program. Transportation, housing, and living expenses are not included. Selected students must make their own transportation and living arrangements prior to the start of the summer research program.

Q: Where does this take place?

A: This program takes place on the University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus located in Aurora, CO. Students are paired with mentors either at the Children's Hospital of Colorado or the University of Colorado Hospital, but will have access to a wide variety of CU Anschutz resources, including the Strauss Health Sciences Library and the Anschutz Health and Wellness Center.

Q: What are you looking for in applicants

A: We are looking for a diverse cohort of enthusiastic undergraduates, or recent graduates, who have the desire to learn more about research in the fields of psychiatry and psychology. More information in regards to applicant eligibility can be found in the application packet.

Q: Can I apply even if I’m not a psychology major?

A: Yes you can! However, for the best chances of selection to the program, you should be able to demonstrate a clear interest in mental health and a commitment to continuing your work or educational career in psychology, psychiatry, or related mental health fields.

Q: My school semester ends in June, can I still participate?

A: Unfortunately, because this is a short program to begin with, we can’t typically include individuals who can’t be on-site or otherwise participate starting on the program start date. Rare exceptions may be made with demonstrated need. If you wish to take Summer classes, you may, but you should balance this with your obligations for PURPLE if selected, as you’ll need to be on-site for 20-25 hours per week and dedicate significant time to your research project.

Q: I will be out of the country/otherwise unavailable during one of the summer months. Can I still participate?

A: See answer above, but typically students are allowed to make up no more than one week of planned absence from PURPLE due to the short timeline of the program.

Q: What activities do you offer during PURPLE?

A: We have a range of activities for students. Some of the activities include reading literature relevant to your mentor's work, collecting, organizing, and analyzing data, attending professional development, career, and graduate school didactics, and clinical shadowing. Please check out our program outline contained within the application packet for more information!

Q: I’m primarily interested in clinical work, not research. Can I still apply?

A: Yes. However, the intention of this program is to prepare you to become a clinician-researcher, or to pursue mental health careers with a research component. We ask that all applicants who apply to this program show interest in at least a partial research career, as you will be asked to complete an original research project while in the program. 

Q: Can I stay on after the program ends?

A: Yes, depending on your mentor’s funding and availability. 67% of our students stay on post-program in some capacity, typically as student research assistants. However, due to funding and availability of positions, this cannot be guaranteed.


Psychiatry (SOM)

CU Anschutz

Anschutz Health Sciences Building

1890 N Revere Ct

Suite 4003

Mail Stop F546

Aurora, CO 80045


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