Payne Scholars

World-class insights helping to inform and shape public
policy on earth resources, energy, and the environment


The Payne Scholars program gives students the opportunity to perform research, collaborate across campus and engage with a broad network of international experts on global policy challenges. Students apply to the Payne Scholars program in the spring semester. As part of a one-credit independent study course, Payne Scholars participate in The Payne Institute activities, write a paper for The Payne Institute Commentary series and develop a research proposal on a related policy topic during the spring semester. At the end of the semester, selected students are eligible for a PAID Payne Scholars summer internship. Working with experts, interns will elaborate on their chosen policy paper, and draft a detailed article for publication in a relevant research journal.



Rare earth and critical materials; Natural resources trade; Supply chains and security; Resource governance


Power sector planning and markets; Energy transitions; Transportation, industry, and climate policy; Geopolitics, security, and conflict


Oil and natural gas regulation; Methane and air pollution; Energy-water nexus; Environmental policy and subsidy reform


Lectures, seminars, round-tables, and public engagement

Cutting edge research and commentary

Multi-disciplinary collaboration across Colorado School of Mines campus

Visiting scholars and research scholars

Partnerships with world-class organizations

Words from a previous Payne Scholar –


“You all are among the most welcoming and considerate people I have gotten to work with.  The projects I took part in these last few months have been rewarding and a great help in my professional development.  Thank you.” 8/2020

The application process has been closed for the Fall 2020 semester.  Check back in late November for the Spring 2021 semester.


Payne Scholars: Student Commentary Series Spring 2020 (follow this link)

Payne Scholars Fall 2020

Oluwalesi Amusa

Torre Brown

Chiang Cheng Siew

Camila Garcia-Ferreyra

Lucia Grande

Nina Guizzetti 

Jocelyn Johnson

Clayton Kocot 

Malavikha Rajivmoorthy 

Gabriela Regueiro

Angelina Rivera

Christian Saldana-Gaona

Kylee Skiekh

Erik Villar

Payne Scholars

Kehinde Abiodun

PhD candidate, Economics assistant teacher

Jusse Hirwa

PhD Candidate, Mineral and Energy Economics