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Columbia College

Undergraduate School

Mailing Address
600 S Michigan Ave
Chicago, Illinois 60605
(312) 369-1000
Email address
School Information
"Located in the heart of downtown Chicago’s Cultural Mile, Columbia College Chicago is a private, nonprofit college offering a distinctive curriculum that blends creative and media arts, liberal arts, and business for nearly 7,000 students in more than 60 undergraduate and graduate degree programs. Dedicated to academic excellence and long-term career success, Columbia College Chicago creates a dynamic, challenging, and collaborative space for students who see the world through a creative lens." (Source:
General Information
Since announcing the launch of its "Anti-Racism Transformation Team", Columbia College has taken steps to make anti-racist resources available to the public. The college provides numerous opportunities for faculty, students, and staff to explore social justice issues through special events, exhibitions, and guest speakers. See developments below:

Actions Taken

Admissions Policies
  • The college announced that its admissions process is "entirely test-free" and described the history of standardized testing in the following way: "The standardized tests that many colleges have come to rely on have a deep history of bias. This bias manifests itself in the separation between families who do and do not have access to tutoring and preparatory coaching for the exams, as well as in the content of the exams themselves. As a result, they have often served to exclude BIPOC and other underrepresented students from the professional opportunities and socioeconomic advancement afforded by higher education."
Curriculum Changes and Requirements
  • The "Columbia Core" curriculum is "required to fulfill general education requirements for all undergraduate students" and includes at least two courses (six credits) in diversity, equity, and inclusion. 
Program and Research Funding
  • The Diversity and Inclusion Award at CC was "established to encourage students to focus on the importance of diversity in higher education and in their experience at Columbia College Chicago specifically, while preparing them for life in a global society." Winners are awarded a scholarship of up to $4,000 to be used on their tuition expenses.
  • Oct 18, 2023, is the deadline for the NBCU Academy Grant which provides "direct student funding to students pursuing a degree in journalism, media studies, film and television studies, media-related technology or engineering, and related media fields..." The college's partnership with NBCU "reflects a shared commitment to diversity, equity, and inclsuion [sic], with NBCU Academy elevating the next generation of journalists and providing students from underrepresented communities a pipeline into news, broadcast media, and related media, information, and technology fields."
  • Faculty, students, and staff will explore social justice issues through curriculum, special events, exhibitions and guest speakers.
  • The college announced a new "Social Justice Initiative" featuring ongoing intellectual collegewide discussions, as well as guest speakers and lecturers.
  • As part of its "The College Tour" series, Columbia College also included a video on "Anti-Racism." The description reads, "At Columbia, diversity and inclusion are more than just numbers and bragging points. Columbia is doing the work to take institutional action that acknowledges our nation’s racist history and works to repair the damage done by decades of bigotry and discrimination."
  • Ayo Walker is an Assistant Professor of Critical Dance Studies whose research interests include Critical Race Theory in Dance and Decolonizing Dance Pedagogy.
  • The mission of L.E.A.D. (Leadership, Equity, Access, and Diversity) is to "empower the Columbia student community with the resources and knowledge to become leaders in their respective communities while promoting diversity and equity across the campus community, Chicago's south loop and the surrounding community."
  • On February 7, 2023, CC News announced that the Office of Student Diversity and Inclusion organized the "Black Souls Welcome Installation" which is a "talent showcase made by and for Columbia's Black students and "highlights artists from varying mediums and backgrounds to portray the many facets of Black life."
  • In the Summer of 2023, the college's "Summer Social Justice Institute" took place and was comprised of two courses; "Topics in Creativity and Social Justice" and "Advanced Topics in Creativity and Social Justice."
Symbolic Actions
Last updated October 4th, 2023
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