College of DuPage

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Coordinates: 41°50′30″N 88°4′18″W / 41.84167°N 88.07167°W / 41.84167; -88.07167

College of DuPage
Established 1967
Type Community College
Endowment $5.5 million[1]
President Dr. Robert L. Breuder
Academic staff 296 full-time, 1130 part-time [2]
Students 29,000 (approx.)
Location Glen Ellyn, Illinois, USA
Campus Suburban, 273 acres (110.5 ha)

College of DuPage, or COD, is a two-year community college[3] in Glen Ellyn, Illinois. The college also owns and operates facilities in the Illinois communities of Addison, Bloomingdale, Carol Stream, Naperville, West Chicago, and Westmont. The college serves students residing in Illinois' Community College District 502, which is most of DuPage County and parts of Cook County and Will County. A small section of DuPage county, specifically the part that falls in Aurora, Illinois, is part of the neighboring Waubonsee Community College district.

The college was established in 1967 in Glen Ellyn, with temporary facilities at 22nd Street (now Fawell Boulevard) and Lambert Road. That very same year the student newspaper, The Courier published its first issue and has been printing ever since. Due to the college's early students having to run from building to building for classes, the Chaparral was adopted as the college's mascot. The main campus is also home to WDCB 90.9 FM, a public radio station founded in 1977, as well as the literary magazine Prairie Light Review, founded in 1982.


COD has expanded much over the years. Initially there were temporary buildings on the West side of the campus, and they are still up today. The first permanent buildings were constructed on this site in the 1970s. The first such building was A-building with the first two of its three floors opened for use in the fall of 1973. The A-Building was later named the Instructional Center, or IC building, and is now named the Rodney Berg Instructional Center, or BIC, after the College's first President. Others to follow were the Seaton Computer Center (named for a prominent COD Board trustee) or SCC, the Art Center (now the McAninch Arts Center, named for the College's second President) also called The MAC, the Student Resource Center, or SRC, and the Physical Education Building.

Currently the facility master plan calls for expanding the campus. Under it the Early Childhood Education Center, or ECEC building, was built, and the Health & Science (HSC) and Technology Education Centers (TEC) buildings opened during the summer of 2009. The college library is located in the SRC building.

The College campus has undergone an Architectural and Landscape renaissance over the last five years. Facilities have been renovated and new buildings built to provide state-of-the art facilities for virtually all academic and administrative departments. The projects are briefly described below: Technology Education Center (TEC). This new 178,000 square feet (16,500 m2) building, completed in 2009, houses the Automotive Technology, HVAC/ELMEC, Architecture, Horticulture, Interior Design, and Computer Information Systems in a new steel, glass and precast concrete panel building on the West side of campus. The building was awarded LEED Silver.

The 475,000 square feet (44,100 m2) BIC Renovation (Phase one completed 2011), and (phase two completed 2012) and new 65,000 square feet (6,000 m2) Student Services Center (SSC) (completed 2011) received a complete makeover, including a reorganization of faculty and administrative departments, expanded student commons, updated classrooms and labs, and the addition of the new Student Services Center which now connects the SRC and BIC with a large naturally lit commons, a new coffee shop (Starbucks) and easily accessible ‘one-stop-shop’ student services offices and operations. The renovation and Student Services Center replaced the deteriorating BIC exterior with a new, modern panel and glass exterior and bright interior spaces. The renovated BIC pulled the "gen-ed" classes out of the West Campus temporary buildings, and the classes all have a permanent home in the BIC due to the departure of the larger programs (Meteorology, Architecture, Automotive, Fire Science/EMS, Criminal Justice, Hospitality, Horticulture, CIS, Interior Design, HVAC/ELMEC, etc.) to their respective buildings elsewhere on campus. The transfer of the classes to the BIC empties the temporary buildings, thus enabling them to be disassembled and the land made clear for the next phases of the Homeland Security Building expansion on the West Campus.

On the East side of campus, the new 60,000 square feet (5,600 m2) Culinary and Hospitality Center (CHC) (completed 2011) houses culinary kitchens and bakeries, a six room boutique Hotel run by students of the Hospitality program, two gourmet restaurants open to the Public, a culinary amphitheater and the colleges TV station and video production departments.

The 66,000 square feet (6,100 m2) Homeland Security Education Center (Phase one completed 2011) is the first facility of its kind in the midwest. It houses the Criminal Justice program, the Fire Science/EMS program, the Suburban Law Enforcement Academy, and the COD police department. The facility features an Immersive Interior Training Lab, forensics and cybercrimes labs, an auditorium that doubles as a mock courtroom, a self-contained breathing apparatus lab, and a debriefing room.[4]

Landscape projects on campus have also been performed to introduce new gardens, decorative plantings and exterior student environments.

Future Expansion[edit]

Pending a referendum on the November 2010 Ballot, the college plans on keeping the current tax rate where it is, where in turn, the college plans on finishing the three-phase project for the Homeland Security Education Center. The planned expansion includes a parking structure as well as a fully modeled streetscape for Police-Fire-EMS-SWAT training. A parking structure on the eastern side of campus is also planned, as the campus is currently over-capacity with its parking spaces, and the campus will be brought to current with its level of support for the students. There are also plans to demolish the older structures, including the K, L, and M buildings on the campus' west side.

Semester conversion[edit]

For most of its history, the College of DuPage offered classes in an 11-week-long quarter format, with four quarters (Winter (January–March), Spring (April–June), Summer (June–August) and Fall (September–December)) in a single calendar year. In May 2002, the Board of Trustees voted to convert to semesters. The conversion was effective August 2005 and caused some students to lose class credit if they had not attended classes for a few years. For example, Chemistry 100, originally a 5 credit class, was reduced to 3.33 credits and while the credits did still count towards an elective, it no longer fulfilled the requirement for science, requiring the student to re-take the class (Chemistry 1110 or 1105) to satisfy the Associates of Arts degree audit.

Meteorology and storm chasing[edit]

The COD Meteorology Department is one of the more unique programs in the country. It was the first college to offer storm chasing for college credit. It began in 1989 as a weekend adventure before eventually becoming a 50-day-a-year (five separate trips of ten days each) full-scale college course today. The meteorology department offers classes such as Severe Weather Lab, Mesoscale Meteorology, and Severe and Unusual Weather to help train students to both chase and forecast severe weather events. Meteorology majors from COD have moved on to many universities and beyond to staff such places as the National Weather Service, TV stations, the National Center for Atmospheric Research, and the National Severe Storms Laboratory, to name a few.

It is also well known for a very comprehensive weather data website used by many in the severe storms fields and other disciplines of meteorology as well as by weather enthusiasts, storm spotters, and chasers. The website was often seen being used by those on the Discovery Channel's Storm Chasers reality show. NEXLAB is short for "Next Generation Weather Lab", a take off on the Next Generation Weather Radar, or NEXRAD, a name used by the National Weather Service for its Doppler weather radar system that was implemented in the 1990s.

The COD Meteorology Department is also heavily involved in the community. Skywarn programs helping to host one of the larger spotter training seminars each March in DuPage County.[5] The training is known as the Advanced Spotter Training for the Multi-County Skywarn of the Chicago Metro area. 12 counties participate through the DuPage Office of Emergency Management (OEM), the Chicago National Weather Service, and the College of DuPage Meteorology Dept (NEXLAB). The department also irregularly hosts advanced symposiums on severe thunderstorm and tornado forecasting.


In May 2008, the school board abruptly removed the college president, Sunil Chand.[6][7]

In October 2008, COD board chairman Michael McKinnon sued three former college trustees for defamation. The defamation suit was dismissed in mid-February, 2009. The three trustees had alleged that he had sexually harassed them.[8][9][10] Mary Mack, one of the trustees, then counter-sued McKinnon for defamation.[11]

In November 2008, according to, faculty members and students protested a board meeting by attending the meeting with tape over their mouths. This was to protest changes to the college rules modeled on conservative activist David Horowitz's controversial "Academic Bill of Rights", which takes control over the curriculum away from teachers and gives it to the school board.[12][13] If adopted, as the Board of Trustees has proposed, this reform would make College of DuPage the first institution of higher learning in the nation to adopt Horowitz's "Academic Bill of Rights"[14] The faculty association sent a letter to the board noting that the changes were never discussed and no complaints over curriculum have been filed by students.[12] Another controversial change to the college rules was that control over the student newspaper will be given to the College president. This comes after the newspaper criticized the school board. The Student Press Law Center advised the newspaper that the changes may violate Illinois state law.[12]

In February 2009, a board meeting in which trustee candidates contested objections to their candidacy drew over 100 people. The objections to the candidacies had been filed by Kory Atkinson, an outgoing trustee. The board barred audience members from commenting on the procedures. Candidates charged that the process was flawed and undemocratic.[15] [16]


The College of DuPage Library serves the college's 29,000 students and 1,400 faculty and staff. The library is based on the second and third floors of COD's Student Resource Center (SRC), located at the College's main campus in Glen Ellyn. The Library also provides services to the College's off-campus Regional Centers and Centers for Independent Learning. The library's collection includes over 200,000 individual titles, 900 periodical titles, over 100 databases, 14,500 musical recordings, 690 audiobooks, 13,000 instructional videos, and an extensive rental video collection.

The Library has partnerships with various community-based and state and national library organizations. The Library's Philanthropy Center is a partnership with the Donors Forum of Chicago. The Library also has a residency in community college librarianship program, designed to offer a two-year intensive, mentored experience in community college librarianship to a recent library school graduate. The Library also provides resources and facilities for the College’s Library Technical Assistance (LTA) certificate program.

In January 2000 the Library received the Excellence in Academic Libraries Award, sponsored by the Association of College and Research Libraries and Blackwells’ Book Services.


In sports, the College of DuPage Chaparrals are a member of the National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA).

The first NJCAA Championship in any sport at College of DuPage was the 1980 NJCAA Men's National Ice Hockey Champions.[17]

National championships[edit]

Notable faculty and alumni[edit]


  1. ^ As of June 30, 2009. "U.S. and Canadian Institutions Listed by Fiscal Year 2009 Endowment Market Value and Percentage Change in Endowment Market Value from FY 2008 to FY 2009" (PDF). 2009 NACUBO-Commonfund Study of Endowments. National Association of College and University Business Officers. Retrieved February 2, 2010. 
  2. ^
  3. ^
  4. ^ Marcy Marro, "A Sense of Security: First-of-its-kind education center trains first responders" Metal Architecture magazine Tues May 1, 2012
  5. ^ DuPage Severe Weather Conference Website
  6. ^ [Board Abruptly Ousts President of College of DuPage]
  7. ^ [College of DuPage President Chand ousted] 27 May 2008 Daily Herald
  8. ^ Ted Gregory, [Defamation suit rocks college calm] October 24, 2008 Chicago Tribune
  9. ^ Catherine Edman, [COD board chair files defamation suit against ex-colleagues] Daily Herald 10/23/2008
  10. ^ [Governing Board's Chairman Sues 3 Former Trustees of Community College] Chronicle of Higher Education
  11. ^ Dan Petrella, [Ex-COD trustee fires back at board chairman] Suburban Life Publications Tue Dec 23, 2008
  12. ^ a b c "Power Grab at DuPage"
  13. ^ [More Board Turmoil at College of DuPage, as Faculty Bridles Over Proposals]
  14. ^ "College of DuPage Trustees Move to Adopt Academic Bill of Rights"
  15. ^ Christy Gutowski, "Crowd watches College of DuPage candidates fight objections" 2/10/2009 Daily Herald
  16. ^ Brian Hudson, "UPDATED: Election committee considers objections" Glen Ellyn News Tue Feb 10, 2009
  17. ^ a b

External links[edit]