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Encyclopedia > Columbia College Chicago
Columbia College Chicago
Columbia College Chicago seal

Motto: Esse Quam Videri
(Latin for "To be, rather than to seem.")
Established 1890
Type: Private
Endowment: $114 million
President: Warrick L. Carter
Faculty: 1,250
Students: 11,499
Undergraduates: 10,771
Postgraduates: 728
Location Chicago, Illinois, USA
Campus: Urban
Colors: Periwinkle, Gray, Black and White                        
Nickname: Renegades
Website: colum.edu

Columbia College Chicago is the largest arts and communications college in the United States.[1] Founded in 1890, the school is located in the South Loop of Chicago. The most popular academic programs include Film and Video, Arts and Entertainment Management, Design, Journalism, and Photography. The college has performing arts programs including Theater, Dance, and Music. Columbia also specializes in disciplines such as American Sign Language, Fiction Writing, Poetry, Television and Radio. The college offers a complete liberal arts and sciences education by offering courses in math, science, social science, and history as well as several humanities. As a result students can receive a full four year education from Columbia. Image File history File links No higher resolution available. ... For other uses, see Motto (disambiguation). ... Latin was the language originally spoken in the region around Rome called Latium. ... The date of establishment or date of founding of an institution is the date on which that institution chooses to claim as its starting point. ... A private university is a university that is run without the control of any government entity. ... A financial endowment is a transfer of money or property donated to an institution, with the stipulation that it be invested, and the principal remain intact. ... USD redirects here. ... University President is the title of the highest ranking officer within a university, within university systems that prefer that appellation over other variations such as Chancellor or rector. ... A faculty is a division within a university. ... For other uses, see Student (disambiguation). ... In some educational systems, undergraduate education is post-secondary education up to the level of a Bachelors degree. ... Degree ceremony at Cambridge. ... Flag Seal Nickname: The Windy City Motto: Urbs In Horto (Latin: City in a Garden), I Will Location Location in Chicagoland and northern Illinois Coordinates , Government Country State Counties United States Illinois Cook, DuPage Mayor Richard M. Daley (D) Geographical characteristics Area     City 606. ... School colors are the colors chosen by a school to represent it on uniforms and other items of identification. ... Periwinkle is a desaturated color in the blue/indigo/violet family. ... Gray or grey is a color seen commonly in nature. ... This article is about the color black; for other uses, see Black (disambiguation). ... Alternate meanings: White (disambiguation) White is a color (more accurately it contains all the colors of the spectrum and is sometimes described as an achromatic color—black is the absence of color) that has high brightness but zero hue. ... The athletic nickname, or equivalently athletic moniker, of a university or college within the United States of America is the name officially adopted by that institution for at least the members of its athletic teams. ... A website (alternatively, Web site or web site) is a collection of Web pages, images, videos or other digital assets that is hosted on one or several Web server(s), usually accessible via the Internet, cell phone or a LAN. A Web page is a document, typically written in HTML... Image File history File links No higher resolution available. ... The Loop is what locals call the historical center of downtown Chicago. ... Flag Seal Nickname: The Windy City Motto: Urbs In Horto (Latin: City in a Garden), I Will Location Location in Chicagoland and northern Illinois Coordinates , Government Country State Counties United States Illinois Cook, DuPage Mayor Richard M. Daley (D) Geographical characteristics Area     City 606. ...



Columbia has a nontraditional campus located in the South Loop of Chicago. Columbia's campus is composed of many buildings that were built in the early parts of the 20th century and were bought by the school as they expanded. Each building contains more than one academic department. The Loop is what locals call the historical center of downtown Chicago. ... Flag Seal Nickname: The Windy City Motto: Urbs In Horto (Latin: City in a Garden), I Will Location Location in Chicagoland and northern Illinois Coordinates , Government Country State Counties United States Illinois Cook, DuPage Mayor Richard M. Daley (D) Geographical characteristics Area     City 606. ...

Alexandroff Campus Center

Located at 600 S. Michigan Avenue, Columbia College's Main Building was built in 1906-1907 by Christian A. Eckstorm, an architect popular for his industrial and warehouse designs, to serve as the headquarters of the International Harvester Company. 600 S. Michigan was a modern skyscraper of its era, built with a steel skeleton, high-speed elevators, electric light, the most advanced mechanical systems available and a floor plan designed to maximize natural light for all of its interior office spaces.The 15-story brick-clad building with classical stone detailing has an Art Deco lobby that retains much of its original marble. In 1937 the building was purchased by the Fairbanks-Morse Company, makers of railroad engines, farm equipment and hydraulic systems. It was acquired by Columbia College in 1974. In its early years as the home of Columbia, it was adaptively reused to house classrooms, the library, darkrooms, studios, and an auditorium. When the campus expanded through the acquisition of other buildings, especially after 1990, some of these functions, such as the greatly expanded library, were moved to other locations, and the spaces were again adapted for new uses. The building continues to serve as the administrative center of the college, and houses the Museum of Contemporary Photography on its first two floors, along with the 180-seat Ferguson Memorial Theater, photography darkrooms, two professional television studios, film/video editing facilities, and classrooms.

Alexandroff Campus Center
Alexandroff Campus Center

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Congress Campus

The 33 East Congress Building was built in 1925-26 by noted Chicago architect, Alfred S. Alschuler, who designed the 1927 Chicago Mercantile Exchange. The seven-story brick and terra cotta “Congress-Wabash Building” was commissioned by Ferdinand W. Peck, Jr., a real estate developer, and initially housed a bank, offices, and recreation rooms that included dozens of pool tables. A national billiards championship was held here in 1938. By the 1940s, the building was known by the name of its major tenant, the Congress Bank. In the 1980s it became the home of MacCormac College. Columbia leased space in the building starting in 1997 and purchased the structure in 1999. It currently houses administrative offices, classroom space and the college’s radio station.

Congress Campus
Congress Campus

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Wabash Campus Building

623 S. Wabash Avenue was built in 1895 by Solon S. Beman, architect of the industrial town of Pullman, one of the nineteenth century’s largest, most complex, and globally famous planned industrial communities for the Pullman Palace Car Company. The ten-story 623 S. Wabash building was originally built for the Studebaker Brothers Carriage Company of Fort Wayne, Indiana as its Chicago regional office and warehouse facility. It was later owned by the Brunswick Company, makers of wood furnishings and built-in furniture for libraries, universities and a variety of public commercial and governmental facilities. By the late 19th century Brunswick became specialists in designing such entertainment furnishings as bars, billiards tables, and bowling alleys for drinking establishments nationwide. Subsequent owners are unknown. The building was acquired by Columbia in 1983 and now houses classrooms, academic offices, a computerized newsroom, sciences laboratories, art studios, stage and costume design workshops and two public gallery spaces.

Wabash Campus Building
Wabash Campus Building

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South Michigan Campus

624 S. Michigan Avenue was built by Eckstorm in 1908 as an eight story building to house the Chicago Musical College, a concern headed by Florenz Ziegfield Sr., father of Broadway Follies producer Flo Ziegfield, Jr. A seven-story addition was designed and built in 1922 by Alfred Alschuler. The building was renamed the Blum Building and housed the studios of a dance school and boutique women’s clothiers. Tenants in the building in the 1920s included Augustus Eugene Bournique’s dancing schools and two select women’s clothiers, Stanley Korshak’s Blackstone Shop and Blum’s Vogue. Brick clad with classical detailing, this 15-story building retains its stunning a marble and brass lobby. Columbia College acquired the building in 1990 and it now houses a five-story library, classrooms, departmental offices, student and faculty lounges and the college’s bookstore

1104 Wabash Campus

1104 S. Wabash Avenue, built in 1891, is a City of Chicago Landmark (1996) and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places (1980). Built by William LeBaron Jenney, acknowledged as the inventor of the skyscraper for his fire-proofed metal skeleton-frame designs, the Ludington building represents his continuing experimentation as the first entirely terra cotta-clad skyscraper. The Ludington is also a rare survivor, one of only two extant loft buildings in Chicago built by Jenney.

This eight-story, steel-frame building, boasting one of the finest examples of a terra-cotta clad façade, was commissioned by Mary Ludington Barnes for the American Book Company, which was owned by her husband, Charles Barnes. At the time, Chicago was a national center for the publishing industry, as demonstrated by this building and many others, particularly those on “Printing House Row,” and including the former Lakeside Press Building owned by Columbia College. The American Book Company built the building to house its offices, printing presses, packaging and shipping operations. Its frame was built to withstand the weight and vibrations of the presses, which were originally located on the 4th through 6th floors, and to accommodate the anticipated 8 story addition that was never built. Its status as a manufacturing facility determined its form as a loft building, with a practical and efficient interior that had few elegant original elements. Its location, between the Grand Central terminal at Harrison and Wells Streets and the Illinois Central station at Michigan Avenue and Roosevelt Road, made it ideal for the distribution of the company’s products.

The Ludington Building was owned by descendents of its original owners until 1960, although it was occupied by many different tenants, including the Pepsodent toothpaste company in the 1910s and ‘20s. In 1960 it was sold to Warshawsky and Company, an autoparts firm, for use as a storage facility. Columbia College Chicago purchased the building from Warshawsky in 1999. The Ludington currently houses the school’s Center for Book and Paper Arts, a portion of the Film and Video Department, the Glass Curtain Gallery and the Conaway Multicultural Center.

1104 Wabash Campus Building
1104 Wabash Campus Building

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Music Department

1014-16 S. Michigan Avenue was built in 1912 by Christian A. Eckstorm. A red brick 4-story building with terra cotta detailing, this structure was erected by a developer as a speculative commercial building. During its first 30 years, it housed offices for a shingle distributor, a lumber company and an electrical parts manufacturer. In 1941, the building was rehabilitated for the Sherwood Conservatory of Music, founded in 1895 by William H. Sherwood, a piano virtuoso, teacher and composer.The school’s most famous alumna may be the comedienne Phyllis Diller, who was a piano student at the Sherwood School in the 1930s but did not graduate. The building was acquired by Columbia College Chicago in 1997 and now houses the school’s music department. The artistic, cultural and performance education tradition of this building, as it was adaptively reused since the 1940s, is continued today in the programs of the Music Department of Columbia College

Getz Theater

72 E. 11th Street was built in 1929 by Holabird & Root, architects of outstanding Chicago skyscrapers such as the Chicago Board of Trade, the Palmolive Building and the 333 N. Michigan Avenue Building. 72 East 11th Street, a six- story, limestone-clad Art Deco building, was originally owned by the Chicago Women’s Club and housed the organization’s meeting rooms, offices and a theater. Rich in history, it was the site for rallies in support of women’s voting rights, efforts on behalf of compulsory education laws and fund raising for scholarships at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and a women’s dormitory at the University of Chicago. Subsequent owners and uses are unknown. Acquired by Columbia in 1980 as the school’s Theater Center, it currently houses a renovated 400-seat theater ,classrooms, and space for film and photography studios.

Dance Center

1306 S. Michigan Avenue was built in 1930 by architect Anker S. Graven. This sleek four-story Art Deco building, clad in limestone, was erected as the Paramount Publix Corporation as a film exchange, a venue for the presentation of films to the independent cinema operators throughout the Midwest who could rent them for exhibition at their theaters. The studio occupied the building up to about 1950, when it was taken over by the Equitable Life Assurance Company. In the 1970s it was known as the Seafarers International Union Building. The City of Chicago took possession of it in a tax sale in 1984, and used it for the Health Department’s Environmental Health Clinic. The building was acquired by Columbia College in 1999 for use as the school’s Dance Center. After extensive interior renovation and adaptation, the Dance Center opened its state-of-the-art educational and public performance facilities in the fall of 2000.

 '68 , Student Performance Night, Dance Center main space, 1979
'68 , Student Performance Night, Dance Center main space, 1979

Prior to the relocation to Michigan Avenue, the Dance Center was located at 3750 North Sheridan Avenue in a former movie theater. The first floor housed the department office, lobby, dressing rooms, and the "main space", the primary dance studio. The second floor, accessed via a metal staircase in the back of the main space, held the ballet studio, the T'Chi room and music recording rooms. Image File history File links No higher resolution available. ... Image File history File links No higher resolution available. ...

Ballet room, 1979
Ballet room, 1979

There are more buildings such as the theater film annex, and the student dorms on Congress and State, Balbo and Plymouth, 8th and State, Congress and Wabash. Image File history File links Size of this preview: 423 × 599 pixelsFull resolution‎ (967 × 1,370 pixels, file size: 213 KB, MIME type: image/jpeg)The ballet studio, Dance Center of Columbia College, Chicago, 1979 Photographed by Judith A. Webster I, the copyright holder of this work, hereby grant the... Image File history File links Size of this preview: 423 × 599 pixelsFull resolution‎ (967 × 1,370 pixels, file size: 213 KB, MIME type: image/jpeg)The ballet studio, Dance Center of Columbia College, Chicago, 1979 Photographed by Judith A. Webster I, the copyright holder of this work, hereby grant the...


Columbia was founded in 1890 as a speech and teaching college for women. In the 1950s the college broadened its educational base to include television and other areas of communication and media arts. However, by 1962 Columbia had fewer than 200 students, a part-time faculty of 25, and no endowments, subsidies or visibility.

Mike Alexandroff became president in 1963, intent on fashioning a new approach to liberal arts education. He thought that many students had become disenchanted with the highly structured academic experience offered by most traditional universities. Columbia offered an affordable liberal education, and well as a faculty made up mostly of working professionals. He established an open-admissions policy so that any qualified high school graduate could have the opportunity to work toward achieving their educational and professional goals. The term liberal education has its origins in the medieval concept of the liberal arts , but now tends to be mainly associated with the application of Enlightenment liberalism. ...

In 1964 the college moved into rented warehouse space at 540 N. Lake Shore Drive and by 1969 the college's enrollment had reached 700.

In 1974 Columbia won full accreditation as a four-year, undergraduate liberal arts school by the North Central Association of Schools and Colleges. By 1976 enrollment had passed the 2,000 mark and the college purchased its first real estate, the 175,000 square-foot building at 600 S. Michigan. At the time of Alexandroff's retirement in 1992, Columbia College served 6,791 students and owned or rented more than 643,000 square feet of instructional, performance and administrative space.

John B. Duff, former commissioner of the Chicago Public Library and former chancellor of the Massachusetts Board of Regents of Higher Education, succeeded Mr. Alexandroff as the college's president. During his tenure the school continued to expand educational offerings and community outreach, as well as adding to the physical campus. The Chicago Public Library consists of 80 branches (as of March 2006) throughout the city of Chicago, Illinois, USA. History Harold Washington Library in downtown Chicago. ...

Duff retired in August 2000 and was succeeded by Warrick L. Carter, an educator, jazz composer and performing artist. Dr. Carter joined Columbia from The Walt Disney Company, where he spent four years as director of entertainment arts. Disney redirects here. ...

Previously he spent 12 years at Berklee College of Music in Boston, the world’s largest independent school of music, where he served as dean of faculty and then provost/vice president of academic affairs. Berklee College of Music, founded in 1945, is an independent music college in Boston, Massachusetts with many prominent faculty, staff, alumni, and visiting artists. ... Nickname: City on the Hill, Beantown, The Hub (of the Universe)1, Athens of America, The Cradle of Revolution, Puritan City, Americas Walking City Location in Massachusetts, USA Counties Suffolk County Mayor Thomas M. Menino(D) Area    - City 232. ...

In May 2001, Columbia reorganized its academic departments and programs under four schools: Fine & Performing Arts, Graduate and Continuing Education, Liberal Arts & Sciences, and Media Arts.

As of Fall 2006, enrollment topped 11,000.[2] Currently, Columbia College Chicago owns more than 1.2 million square feet in Chicago's South Loop, with plans for much more expansion over the upcoming years including a building on Michigan Avenue, two buildings on Wabash Avenue, a Media Production Center on State Street. A campus center is expected to be built in the next decade as well. The college offers on-campus housing to more than 2,000 students in four facilities. Two more facilities will house students in the next two years.

The College has a growing program of international exchanges, including links with Dublin Institute of Technology and the University of East London. The Dublin Institute of Technology (DIT) was established officially in 1992 under the Dublin Institute of Technology Act but had been previously set up in 1978 on an ad-hoc basis. ... University of East London Docklands Campus The University of East London (UEL) is a university in East London. ...

Campus Media

The Columbia Chronicle is the college's award-winning weekly newspaper. Frequency TV is the college's television station. WCRX (88.1 FM) is the college's radio station. Each of these outlets is run by students for class credit in their respective departments. However, students working at The Columbia Chronicle can get paid for their work. WCRX (88. ...

Reservoir, the college's online student magazine, is produced weekly by students from across departments. Reservoir lost its original sex columnist after a column regarding "camel toe" was published and received harsh attention from college administrators; later features concerning alcohol consumption and recreational drug use, and others containing extreme sexual content, have also been met with various degrees of administrative disapproval.

On WCRX, Entertainment Primetime Weekly was the first show that featured entertainment news on radio. This format is now being used around the country, usually in the afternoon.[citation needed] like WSTR FM in Atlanta. WSTR is the callsign of two broadcast stations in the United States: WSTR FM (Star 94), a radio station in Atlanta, Georgia WSTR-TV, The WBs television station in Cincinnati, Ohio This is a disambiguation page — a navigational aid which lists other pages that might otherwise share the...

The students in the Journalism Department's Magazine Workshop class produce a magazine called Echo every semester.

AEMMP Records is the student-run record label. The staff develops an artist, produces an album, and markets the product throughout the course of an academic year.

Student Organizations

In addition to the academic programs offered at the college, students engage in many extracurricular activities. There are several major organizations on campus in addition to countless other growing organizations. All of these organizations are run by students. They include the Producer's Guild of Columbia (PGC), the Student Government Association, the Student Organization Council, the Student Alumni Association, the Student Athletics Association (Renegades), ReachOut, Senior Class, the Student Programming Board, the Asian Student Organization, the International Student Organization, and Q-Force. These student organizations work together to provide leadership training and experience to Columbia students so they will be ready to take on leadership roles in their future places of employment.

Student Government Association (SGA)

Mission Statement

The Student Government Association of Columbia College Chicago represents the student voice and endeavors to construct a more perfect union. It serves as a liaison between students and the faculty and staff, and administration in order to ensure the welfare of our unique and diverse art and communication community. Through leadership and strong representation, it strives to provide students with opportunities to grow academically, artistically, professionally, and personally.


The SGA consists of an Executive Board, the Senate, and committees. The Executive Board, or E-Board, consists of the President, Executive Vice President, Vice President of Communications, Vice President of Finance, and the student representative to the College Board of Trustees.

The Senate consists of student representatives from each of the colleges academic departments, eight at senators "at-large" who represent the college community as a whole, two senators who represent the college's vast commuter population, one senators from the Student Organization Council, one senator from the Student Athletics Association, and two senators from the Residence Hall Association.

From those Senators there are six committees, each with a different focus. Each committee has a chair and a vice chair. The Executive Vice President is in charge of overseeing the committees and their work.

SGA Senate meetings are open to the public and are held on Tuesdays at 5pm during the academic year.

Notable alumni

Save Karyn is the name of both a Web site and a book. ... Nick Charles (born Nicholas Nickeas on June 30, 1946) is an award-winning American sports sportscaster and journalist. ... This article or section does not cite its references or sources. ... Janusz Zygmunt Kamiński (born June 27, 1959) is an Oscar winning cinematographer and film director who has photographed all of Steven Spielbergs movies since 1993s Schindlers List. ... Paul Andrew Andy Richter (born October 28, 1966) is best known for his former role as Conan OBriens sidekick on Late Night with Conan OBrien. ... Pat Sajak (born Patrick Leonard Sajdak on October 26, 1946), is an Emmy Award-winning television personality and one-time talk show host, best known as the host of the popular and long-running American television game show, Wheel of Fortune. ... Bruce DuMont is a political analyst and broadcaster based in Chicago, Illinois. ... Chicago broadcaster Bob Sirott began his career in radio as a disc jockey for WBBM-FM before moving to WLS (AM). ... Genndy Tartakovsky (Russian: Геннадий Тартаковский (Gennadij Tartakovskij), born January 17, 1970) is an Emmy Award-winning Russian-born American animator. ... George Tillman, Jr. ... Robert Teitel is an American film producer. ... Nan Warshaw founded Bloodshot Records, a Chicago record label. ... Lonnie Rashid Lynn, Jr. ... Andrew R. Dick[1] (born December 21, 1965) is an American comedian and actor best known for his roles in the popular sitcoms NewsRadio and Less Than Perfect. ... Dino Stamatopoulos in an episode of . ... Eric Hoffman is a television writer best known for his work on the late 1990s sketch comedy television program, Mr. ... Jay Johnston (born 22 October 1968) is an American actor and comedian, best known for his work as a writer and performer on the late 1990s HBO sketch comedy show Mr. ... Insert non-formatted text hereInsert non-formatted text hereInsert non-formatted text hereInsert non-formatted text hereInsert non-formatted text hereInsert non-formatted text hereInsert non-formatted text hereInsert non-formatted text hereInsert non-formatted text hereSteven Kmetko (born February 16, 1953, in Rhinelander, Wisconsin) is an entertainment television host. ... Tonya Pinkins, in a still from the opening sequence of All My Children. ... Darius De Haas is an African-American stage actor who has appeared in such productions as the Broadway production of Rent, and the Paper Mill Playhouse Cast of Children of Eden, with Stephanie Mills. ... This does not cite any references or sources. ... Jeffrey Daniels, real name: Jeffrey Sean Daniels is a chicago-raised African American poet, artist, and professor. ... Che Smith, known by the stage name of Rhymefest, is an American hip hop artist (born January 1, 1977) from the South side of Chicago in Jeffrey Manor whose first official album, Blue Collar, was released on July 11, 2006. ... Jonathan Jacob Walker (b. ... Michelle Lynn Monaghan (born March 23, 1976) is an American actress. ... Simon John Charles Le Bon (born October 27, 1958) is the lead singer and lyricist of the pop band Duran Duran. ... Jim DeRogatis (born 1964 in Jersey City, New Jersey) is a U.S. music critic. ... John Kass is a Chicago Tribune columnist. ... Jan Terri is a blues musician from the United States. ... James Conrad Verraros (b. ... Gregory Mark Glienna (b. ...

Notable faculty members

Gary Sherman, born and raised in Chicago, Illinois, started directing short films, commercials, industrials, and documentaries while still an undergraduate at IITs Institute of Design. ... The industrial drummer Martin Atkins was born in Coventry, England on August 3, 1959. ... Phyllis Eisenstein is an author of science fiction/fantasy stories. ... Joe Meno is the author of the novels Tender As Hellfire (1999), How the Hula Girl Sings (2001), Hairstyles of the Damned (2004) and The Boy Detective Fails (2006. ... Salim Muwakkil is an American journalist based out of Chicago. ... Audrey Niffenegger (born June 13, 1963 in South Haven, Michigan) is a writer and artist. ... Sheldon Patinkin is an author, teacher, and director. ... William Russo is the name of: William Daddano, Sr. ... Jason Stephens is a film producer based in Chicago. ... American poet David Trinidad was born in 1953 in Los Angeles. ... Sam Weller is a fictional character in The Pickwick Papers, the first novel by Charles Dickens, and is allegedly the character that made Dickens famous. ... John H. White Chicago ghetto on the South Side. ... Ivan Brunetti (b. ...


External links

Official sites

Campus media



1 http://www.petersons.com/ugchannel/code/IDD.asp?orderLineNum=799005-10&reprjid=12&inunId=5885&typeVC=instvc&sponsor=1

  Results from FactBites:
Columbia is an undergraduate and graduate college whose principal commitment is to provide a comprehensive educational opportunity in the arts, communications, and public information within a context of enlightened liberal education.
Columbia's intent is to educate students who will communicate creatively and shape the public's perceptions of issues and events and who will author the culture of their times.
Columbia is an urban institution whose students reflect the economic, racial, cultural, and educational diversity of contemporary America.
  More results at FactBites »



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