Columbia International University

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Columbia International University
New CIU Logo.jpg
Motto To know Him and to make Him known.
Established 1923
Type Private
Religious affiliation Multidenominational Christian
President Dr. William H. Jones
Students 1,250
Undergraduates 620
Postgraduates 630
Location Columbia, South Carolina, United States
Campus Suburban, 400 acres (162 ha)
Former names Columbia Bible School
Columbia Bible College
Colors Blue and Gold
Mascot Rams
Website www.ciu.edu

Columbia International University (CIU) is a Christian institution of higher education located in Columbia, South Carolina. As a biblical university, CIU is a fully accredited institution (through the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools) [1]recognized for its emphasis upon spiritual formation, biblical authority and world evangelization. Through its expanding number of liberal arts programs and its historically strong Bible and ministry programs, CIU seeks to meet the challenges of the 21st century both in the United States and abroad by producing “professional ministers” such as pastors, and "ministering professionals” such as teachers, psychologists and business professionals. CIU achieves this through the practice of “total life training” which engages the head, the heart, and the hands, what they call their "educational triad”: 1) Head – Strive for academic excellence with the Bible at the core of all learning; 2) Heart – Grow in maturity in Christ; 3) Hands – Practice skills related to personal and vocational goals in the community away from the classroom.

History[edit]

CIU began from modest beginnings in 1923 when it was founded as Columbia Bible School. The original purpose was to provide a two year course of study in biblical studies for local mill workers. By 1927, the decision was made to convert the school into a college and begin offering bachelor’s degrees in Bible. A location in downtown Columbia was established and the first dean (later president) of the college was chosen. The school continued to grow and eventually required a new campus. The college was relocated in 1960 to its present facility on Monticello Road. It was during the 1960s that the institution’s longest serving president, Robertson McQuilkin, son of the first dean of Columbia Bible College, was inaugurated. During this period, the institution also changed its name to Columbia Bible College and Seminary. The name was changed yet again in 1994 to Columbia International University to highlight the growing educational mission as well as to demonstrate a commitment to preparing students from all parts of the world for global Christian service.

Presidents[edit]

President Term of Office
Rev. Robert McQuilkin 1927–1952
Rev. G. Allen Fleece 1952–1966
Rev. Robertson C. McQuilkin 1968–1990
Dr. Terry C. Hulbert (Interim) 1990–1991
Dr. Johnny V. Miller 1991–1999
Dr. George W. Murray 2000 – June 30, 2007
Dr. William H. Jones July 1, 2007–Present

Divisions[edit]

CIU Seal

CIU has five colleges: the College of Arts & Sciences, the College of Counseling, the College of Education, the College of Intercultural Studies, and the Seminary & School of Ministry. Because of the closely knit nature of the institution and the emphasis on Christian education and biblical studies regardless of major, many of the colleges share faculty members.[2]

Undergraduate[edit]

The undergraduate division of CIU (formerly known as the Bible College) is the oldest constituent division of the university. The college is headed by a Dean and possesses faculty from a variety of academic competencies, including English, humanities, music, foreign and ancient languages, philosophy, psychology, communications, and various others. While it offers majors in various disciplines, all students must take several core competency courses in biblical studies as a part of general education requirements.

Graduate School[edit]

The Graduate School primarily exists as a complement to the undergraduate programs available. The main focus of the school is offering courses leading to degrees in education, though there is a large postgraduate counseling program. The Graduate School also offers terminal degrees in education: an Ed.D. (Doctor of Education), and an Ed.S. (Education Specialist). These advanced degree programs are led by program coordinator Dr. Brian Simmons, author of multiple works on education and former president of Association of Christian Schools International (ACSI).

Seminary[edit]

The CIU seminary (known as Columbia International University Seminary & School of Ministry) exists for the purpose of training students who desire to pursue a vocation in full or part-time Christian ministry either in a congregational setting, in parachurch organizations or as a missionary. Students at the seminary are not required to hold a particular denominational affiliation to attend, though they must meet all the other requirements for attendance at CIU. Students must assent to CIU's doctrinal standard for admission and candidacy for a degree. In addition to two master’s degree programs, the seminary also offers a doctoral degree and a certificate of graduate study.

Academics[edit]

As an institution of higher education, CIU’s primary emphasis is on its academic programs. Like most other Christian colleges, the traditional academic emphasis has been placed on the humanities and liberal arts rather than natural sciences, in addition to strong emphasis on ministerial and biblical studies, even at the undergraduate level. This is evidenced by the fact that there are undergraduate majors relating directly to ministerial skills but no programs in the sciences. A Business & Organizational Leadership major was added in 2012.

Degrees offered[edit]

Undergraduate Certificates in:

  • Bible

Associate of Arts

Undergraduate Minors in:

  • Philosophy
  • Teaching English as a Foreign Language

Bachelor of Science (B.S.) or Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) with majors in:

  • General Studies
  • Applied English
  • Bible Teaching
  • Biblical Languages
  • Business & Organizational Leadership
  • Communication
  • Church Ministry
  • Digital Media & Cinema
  • English
  • Family & Church Education
  • Global Business Development
  • Global Media Communication
  • Humanities
  • International Community Development
  • Intercultural Studies
  • Media Arts
  • Middle Eastern Studies
  • Music
  • Pastoral Ministries
  • Psychology
  • Teacher Education (Five-year program leading to a master's degree)
  • Youth Ministry, Family, & Culture

Graduate Certificates in:

  • Bible and Theology
  • Biblical Ministry
  • Teaching English as a Foreign Language (TEFL)

Master of Arts (M.A.) with majors in:

  • Bible Exposition
  • Bible Teaching
  • Chaplaincy
  • Counseling
  • Global Studies
  • Intercultural Studies
  • Ministry Care
  • Ministry Leadership
  • Muslim Studies
  • Teaching
  • Teaching English as a Foreign Language/Intercultural Studies
  • Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL)
  • Theological Studies
  • Youth Ministry Leadership

Master of Education (M.Ed.)

  • Curriculum and Instruction
  • Educational Administration

Master of Divinity (M.Div.)

  • Academic Ministries
  • Bible Exposition
  • Chaplaincy
  • Global Studies
  • Ministry Care
  • Ministry Leadership
  • Youth Ministry Leadership

Doctor of Ministry (D.Min.)

  • Ministry Leadership
  • Member Care
  • Military Chaplaincy
  • Global Studies
  • Preaching

Doctor of Education (Ed.D.)

  • Christian Higher Education Leadership
  • Christian School Leadership
  • Curricular and Instructional Leadership

Postgraduate

  • Education Specialist
  • Postgraduate Certificate in Marriage & Family Counseling

Accreditation[edit]

CIU is accredited by the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools[3] for its undergraduate and graduate programs and is listed as a Level V school, meaning that it offers three or fewer doctoral degrees. CIU is also accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of the Association for Biblical Higher Education with its next ten year review in 2019.[4] The seminary is accredited by the Association of Theological Schools in the United States and Canada to award the Master of Divinity, the Master of Arts and the Doctor of Ministry.[5] The Graduate School is also accredited by the South Carolina Department of Education to offer graduate degrees in early childhood and elementary education leading to certification as a teacher in State of South Carolina.[6]

Online education[edit]

CIU also offers online degrees and other degrees that are a hybrid of on-campus and online courses. The structure of this program has the clear advantage of permitting the student to obtain a degree but without relocating closer to the campus or leaving full-time employment. One obvious disadvantage would be that the student only has limited interaction with other students and the faculty. Some courses are offered on-campus as one-week intensives at CIU's main campus in Columbia or at CIU's extension sites in Atlanta and Korntal, Germany. Degrees that can be earned completely online include:

  • Undergraduate Bible Certificate
  • Graduate Bible and Theology Certificate
  • Graduate Biblical Ministry Certificate
  • Master of Arts (Intercultural Studies)
  • Master of Arts (Muslim Studies)
  • Master of Arts (Theological Studies)
  • Master of Education (Curriculum and Instruction)
  • Master of Education (Educational Administration)

Student life[edit]

Like most evangelical schools and many seminaries, CIU does have doctrinal affirmations and lifestyle standards which all students (regardless of degree sought) are expected to affirm as a part of admission.

Doctrinal standards[edit]

There are seven doctrinal points which students must assent to as a part of their admission to and candidacy for a degree from CIU. These are biblical inspiration, natural separation of humanity from God, salvation by grace through faith in Christ, the historical doctrine of the Trinity, the bodily resurrection of Christ from the dead, the indwelling of the Holy Spirit in the believer, and the evangelical mandate to witness to the gospel of Christ. Additionally, the doctrine of Premillennialism is officially held by the school, but students are not required to adhere to this doctrine. CIU requires all teaching faculty to affirm Premillennialism.[7]

Lifestyle standards[edit]

CIU holds to a goal of spiritual formation in preparation for life after college. Students are required to sign a covenant form agreeing to keep various lifestyle standards established by the university. Some of the standards include prohibition from alcohol and tobacco. Students are required to complete a Spiritual Growth and Self Assessment – a narrative of a student’s spiritual journey during the year. Though not required during summer and winter breaks, students are expected to maintain CIU lifestyle standards.

The standards have been a point of contention for many years. While not actively publicized, a complete handbook is available for viewing at [1].

In the spring semester of 2007, one of the most contentious standards, the "physical expression of affection" standard (dating couples may not hold hands or kiss, but may only hug briefly) was revised to allow for more freedom of physical expressions (couples dating seriously are now allowed to hold hands and kiss briefly).

Student organizations[edit]

  • Student Senate: organization that serves as the go-between with the students and faculty/administration; all presidents of the other organizations sit on Senate
  • Student Union: organization which plans and hosts fun activities for all students.
  • Graduate Life Council
  • Married Students Association
  • The Finial: yearbook
  • Credo: theological/philosophical magazine with articles written by its staff members and students
  • The Rambler: student newspaper that accepts submissions from the student body or the free, confessional and respectful exchange of all ideas.
  • Mu Kappa: an organization for Missionary Kids (MK's) and Third Culture Kids who are enrolled at CIU.
  • African American Student Association
  • Student Mission Connection: student group which prays for current missionary activities and helps members seek their role in global missions.
  • International Student Association
  • Military Veterans Fellowship
  • Married Student Association[8]

Denominational relationships[edit]

CIU prides itself on being a multidenominational institution. It is not directly affiliated or sponsored by any single denomination though welcomes all students from any number of evangelical Christian denominations and somewhat more loosely, any Protestant denomination.

While CIU does have enrolled students and faculty who are members of Christian communities which would not typically be identified as evangelical Protestant, it does require that all faculty and staff belong to a local Protestant church. This policy was enforced some years ago when one faculty member, Dr. Edward Rommen, was removed from his seminary teaching post upon his conversion to Eastern Orthodoxy and reception into the Orthodox Church in America. Prior to his removal from the faculty, Dr. Rommen was a prominent member of the Evangelical Free Church of America.

The following affiliations are typically represented on campus:

  • African Methodist Episcopal
  • African Methodist Episcopal Zion
  • Alliance des Eglises Evangéliques Interdépendantes
  • American Baptist
  • Anglican Church in America
  • Assemblies of God
  • Associate Reformed Presbyterian Synod
  • Christian and Missionary Alliance
  • Church of God in Christ
  • Church of the Nazarene
  • Conservative Baptist Association
  • Episcopal
  • Evangelical Free Church of America
  • Freewill Baptist
  • Independent Baptist Churches
  • Independent Churches
  • National Baptist Convention
  • Pentecostal
  • Presbyterian Church in America
  • Presbyterian Church, various denominations
  • Southern Baptist Convention
  • United Methodist Church [9]

Noteworthy[edit]

In the early 1960s, as the federal government began to mandate the integration of Southern public colleges, the CIU Board of Trustees was already grappling with the issue in March 1963. According the book, “This Side of Heaven – Race, Ethnicity, and Christian Faith” by Robert J. Priest and Alvaro L. Nieves, the board voted that “in the future no one be refused admission to the Bible College on the basis of race solely,” becoming the first white institution of higher education in South Carolina to voluntarily desegregate.

Additional programs[edit]

While the primary mission of CIU is to provide an evangelical higher education to its students, the corporate entity also encompasses two other major educational and evangelistic entities.

Ben Lippen School[edit]

Ben Lippen is a private, interdenominational Christian school located on the CIU campus. It was originally founded as a boarding school in Asheville, North Carolina in the 1940s, but was moved to its current location in 1988, offering middle and high school programs. An elementary school away from the main CIU campus was begun in 1989, and in 2006 a main elementary school campus was completed on CIU grounds and classes began there in August. The schools are co-educational and feature a mix of commuting and resident students. The curriculum mirrors most public institutions with the exception of teaching subject from an evangelical Christian worldview and the inclusion of Bible classes and chapel for students, faculty, and staff. In 2013, there were nearly 800 students enrolled at the school.

Christian radio stations[edit]

Two commercial-free, listener supported radio stations playing Contemporary Christian Music are supported by CIU. The first, 89.7 WMHK-FM, is located on the CIU campus and broadcasts in the Columbia metro area. It received the Station of the Year Award in 1996 from the National Association of Broadcasters for religious/gospel programming, is the 2006 recipient of the CMB/GMA Station of The Year "Dove Award" and is ranked #2 nationally for religiously oriented radio stations. A sister station in Charlotte, North Carolina, 91.9 WRCM-FM, began broadcasting in 1993. Both stations feature a mix of music and preaching and sponsor concerts in their listening areas by CCM artists.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "CIU Accreditation Reaffirmed". Columbia International University. Retrieved 13 November 2014. 
  2. ^ Columbia International University 2013–2014 Academic Catalog
  3. ^ "CIU Accreditation Reaffirmed". Columbia International University. Retrieved 13 November 2014. 
  4. ^ "ABHE Commission on Accreditation". Association for Biblical Higher Education. 2011. Retrieved August 5, 2011. "Reaffirm Accredited Status – Columbia International University (SC) until 2019" 
  5. ^ "ATS – Member Schools". The Commission on Accrediting of the Association of Theological Schools. 2011. Retrieved August 5, 2011. 
  6. ^ "Approved Educator Preparation Programs". scteachers.org. April 28, 2011. Retrieved August 5, 2011. 
  7. ^ CIU 2013–2014 Academic Catalog
  8. ^ CIU Undergraduate Viewbook
  9. ^ CIU 2013–2014 Academic Catalog

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 34°04′33″N 81°04′31″W / 34.075768°N 81.075314°W / 34.075768; -81.075314