Ithaca College

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Ithaca College
The Ithaca College Seal
Motto Commitment to Excellence
Established 1892
Type Private with 5 schools and 2 divisions
Endowment $202.9 million[1]
President Thomas Rochon
Academic staff 673
Admin. staff 989
Students 6,448
Undergraduates 6,031
Postgraduates 417
Location Ithaca, NY, USA
Campus Small city, 757 acres (3.06 km2)
Colors blue and gold          
Athletics NCAA Division III
Nickname "Bombers"
Affiliations Empire 8, Associated New American Colleges
The Ithaca College Logo

Ithaca College is a private college located on the South Hill of Ithaca, New York, United States. The school was founded by William Egbert in 1892 as a conservatory of music. The college has a strong liberal arts core, but also offers several pre-professional programs and some graduate programs.[2] The college is also known internationally for its communications program, the Roy H. Park School of Communications, which was most recently ranked as a top school for both journalism[3] and film.[4] The college is set against the backdrop of Cayuga Lake, the city of Ithaca, and several waterfalls and gorges. The college is perhaps best known for its large list of alumni who play or have played substantial roles in the worlds of media and entertainment. The college has been ranked among the top ten master's universities in the North by U.S. News & World Report every year since 1996.[5] For the 2010 rankings, the college was ranked 7 in this category.[6]



Ithaca College was founded as the Ithaca Conservatory of Music in 1892 when a local violin teacher, William Grant Egbert, rented four rooms and arranged for the instruction of eight students. For nearly seven decades the institution flourished in the city of Ithaca, adding to its music curriculum the study of elocution, dance, physical education, speech correction, radio, business, and the liberal arts. In 1931 the conservatory was chartered as a private college. The college was originally housed in the Boardman House, that later became the Ithaca College Museum of Art, and it was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1971.[7]

Modern era[edit]

"Textor Ball", a modern art sculpture on the roof of the Textor lecture halls.

By 1960, some 2,000 students were in attendance. A modern campus was built on South Hill in the sixties, and students were shuttled between the old and new during the construction. The hillside campus continued to grow in the ensuing 30 years to accommodate more than 6,000 students.

As the campus expanded, the college also began to expand its curriculum. By the 1990s, some 2,000 courses in more than 100 programs of study were available in the college's five schools. The school attracts a multicultural student body with representatives from almost every state and from 78 foreign countries.[8]


Ithaca College's current campus was built in the 1960s on South Hill. In 1968 the College's final academic department moved to the South Hill campus from downtown, making the move complete.

Satellite campuses[edit]

Besides its Ithaca campus, Ithaca College has also operated satellite campuses in other cities. The Ithaca College London Center has been in existence since 1972. Ithaca runs the Ithaca College Los Angeles Program at the James B. Pendleton Center. Additionally, there is an Ithaca College Washington Semester Program, and a recently launched Ithaca College New York City Center.[9]

Former programs include the Ithaca College Antigua Program and the Ithaca College Walkabout Down Under Program in Australia.

Ithaca College also operates direct enrollment exchange programs with several universities, including Griffith University, La Trobe University, Murdoch University, and University of Tasmania (Australia); Chengdu Sport University and Beijing Sport University (China); University of Hong Kong; Masaryk University (Czech Republic); Akita International University and University of Tsukuba (Japan); Hanyang University (Korea); Nanyang Technological University (Singapore); University of Valencia (Spain); and Jönköping University (Sweden).[10]


The college offers a curriculum with more than 100 degree programs in its five schools.



  • Division of Interdisciplinary and International Studies
  • Division of Graduate and Professional Studies

Student life[edit]

Media and publications[edit]

  • The Ithacan is Ithaca College's official newspaper. The paper is written, edited and published by students. The Ithacan is available in print every Thursday morning and online.[11] The Ithacan and its staff have won many major collegiate journalism awards, most notably, the Associated Collegiate Press' National Pacemaker Award, which it has won five times, most recently in 2008.[12][13] The Pacemaker has been widely considered the Pulitzer Prize of collegiate journalism.[citation needed]
  • Ithaca College Television (ICTV) is the student operated television channel that has broadcast since 1958. During the 2012 Spring Semester, ICTV has 23 student-run shows on the air. ICTV has a wide variety of programming that can be viewed on Cable channel 16 in Tompkins County. The majority of the productions take place live in studio, and they include: Backstage Comedy, College Gourmet, Down with ASP, Entertainment 16, Experts Say, Fake Out, Game Over, ICTV Special Projects, Ithaca Eats, Leave the Light on with Dave, Pop Quiz, The Director's Chair, and The Screening Room. ICTV also has an entire host of shows to cover all the athletics on Ithaca's campus, as well as at Cornell University. This semester, the line-up includes: Sports Final, Big Red Face off, Bombers Live, and Hold That Thought. ICTV also has 2 web-series that can be viewed exclusively on Dual Redundancy and Stop Me if You've Heard this One. There are also shows that are filmed outside the confines of the Park School, and they comprise the Field Show section: College Kids, Ithaca College Investigations Unit, Poutine on the Fritz, and Boys of 213. ICTV's flagship program, however, is Newswatch 16. This program is ICTV's longest-running show and one of Tompkins Counties most trusted sources for weekly news, sports, weather, and what is going on all around Tompkins County.
  • WICB is an FCC-licensed station that operates at 4,100 Watts[14] at 91.7 on the FM band. The majority of its programming falls under the modern rock category. While broadcasting modern rock, the station is run similarly to a commercial modern rock station, with the inclusion of playlists planned by the programming and music departments that include leeway for listener requests and DJ choices. The station was recently honored with the MTVU Woodie Award for Best College Radio Station. Other programming ranges from mainstream hip-hop and R&B, to underground, downtempo, and other lesser-known genres of what is generally considered urban music. In addition to a lunchtime Jazz show, WICB broadcasts a number of other specialty shows throughout the week. These shows, which usually run 2–3 hours in length, come from genres such as blues, broadway, jam band music, and "homeless" music, that is not normally heard on the public airwaves.
  • Buzzsaw Magazine, formerly Buzzsaw Haircut, was founded in 1999 and is the college's monthly alternative news magazine. It is available in print and online every month.[15] The magazine is produced by the Ithaca College community and printed by Our Press of Binghamton, New York. It is funded by the Ithaca College Student Government Association, the Park School of Communication, local advertising, community support, and a grant from Campus Progress. It has won a number of national awards, including the Campus Alternative Journalism Project's award for "Best Sense of Humor" in 2003 and the Independent Press Association's Campus Independent Journalism Awards for "Best Campus Publication with a Budget Under $10,000" and "Best Political Commentary" in 2005.

Greek life[edit]

Historically, various independent and national fraternities and sororities had active chapters at Ithaca College. However, due to a series of highly publicized hazing incidents in the 1980s, including one that was responsible for the death of a student, the College administration removed all but five Greek letter organizations from campus, and adopted a non-expansion policy, prohibiting any new Greek houses from affiliating with the College.[16] As of 2008, three recognized Greek organizations remain on campus, all of which are music oriented:

However, there are various Greek Letter Organizations at Ithaca College that are unaffiliated with the school, and therefore not subject to the same housing privileges or rules that contribute to the safety of their members such as non-hazing and non-drinking policies. While uncommon, it is permitted for Ithaca College students to pledge for Greek houses affiliated with Cornell University.


The Ithaca athletics nickname "Bombers" is unique in NCAA athletics, and the origins of the nickname are obscure. Ithaca College's sports teams were originally named the Cayugas, but the name was changed to the Bombers sometime in the 1930s. Several possibilities for the change have been posited. The most common explanation is that the school's baseball uniforms—white with navy blue pinstripes and an interlocking "IC" on the left chest—bear a striking resemblance to the distinctive home uniforms of the New York Yankees, who are known as the Bronx Bombers. It may also have referred to the Ithaca basketball team of that era and its propensity for half-court "bombs". Grumman Aircraft also manufactured airplanes including bombers in Ithaca for many years. The first “Bombers” reference on record was in the December 17, 1938 issue of the Rochester Times-Union in a men’s basketball article.[17]

The name has at times sparked controversy for its perceived martial connotations. It is an occasional source of umbrage from Ithaca's prominent pacifist community, but the athletics department has consistently stated it has no interest in changing the name. The athletics logo has in the past incorporated World War II era fighter planes, but currently does not, and the school does not currently have a physical mascot to personify the name. In 2010 the school launched a contest to choose one. It received over 250 suggestions and narrowed the field down to three: a phoenix, a flying squirrel, and a Lake Beast. In June 2011, President Rochon announced that the school would discontinue the search due to opposition in the alumni community.[18]

Ithaca is a member of the NCAA's Division III, the Empire Eight Conference, and the Eastern College Athletic Conference. Ithaca has one of Division III's strongest athletic programs.[citation needed] The Bombers have won a total of 15 national titles in seven team sports and five individual sports.

Coached by Jim Butterfield[19] for 27 years, the football team has won three NCAA Division III National Football Championships in 1979, 1988 and 1991 (a total surpassed only by Augustana, Mount Union and Wisconsin-Whitewater). Bomber football teams made a record seven appearances in the Division III national championship game, the Amos Alonzo Stagg Bowl, which has since been surpassed by Mount Union in 2003. The Bombers play the SUNY Cortland Red Dragons for the Cortaca Jug, which was added in 1959 to an already competitive rivalry. The matchup is one of the most prominent in Division III college football.[20]

Most recently, the women's crew won back-to-back NCAA Division III championships in 2004 and 2005.

Women's soccer has won two national championships in Division III and is consistently ranked in the top 20 nationally.

The Men's Wrestling team won NCAA Division III National Championships in 1989, 1990 and 1994.

This past year in 2013, Paula Miller, head of Woman's Swimming team completed her 30th year as head coach of the Ithaca Bombers. She has lead the team to many victories. The past four years the Bombers have been undefeated throughout their season defeating tough competition. Ithaca has finished first or second at 25 of the past 29 state meets. The Bombers have also won the Empire 8 crown in each of the past nine seasons.

The 2013-2014 season ended with regaining the NCAA Division III Championship trophy.

Ithaca is also home to more than 60 club sports, many of which compete regularly against other colleges in leagues and tournaments.

Ithaca Forever[edit]

Ithaca Forever is the official alma mater or school song of Ithaca College.[21]

Ithaca, forever shine your light on me
In our hearts together we shall always be
And here's to Ithaca, my Ithaca how beautiful you are,
Your Towers high upon South Hill, reach from stone to star.

Ithaca, forever I'll recall a smile,
Clasp a hand in friendship, walk a snowy mile,
And here's to Ithaca, my Ithaca - Alma Mater true,
Although I leave Cayuga's shore, I'll remember you.

Ithaca, forever guide us on our way,
Like a shining beacon, light our night and day,
And here's to Ithaca, my Ithaca, how bright your vision seems,
May all your sons and daughters dare to live their dreams.


Along with Intercollegiate athletics, Ithaca College has a rather large Intramural sport program. This extracurricular program serves approximately 25% of the undergraduate population yearly. Fourteen traditional team activities are offered throughout the year and include: basketball, flag football, kickball, soccer, softball, ultimate frisbee, ski racing, and volleyball.

For most activities divisions are offered for men’s, women’s, and co-recreational teams. Throughout the year usually two or more activities run concurrently and participants are able to play on a single sex team and co-recreational team for each activity. The most popular activities recently have been 5-on-5 basketball with over forty teams entered for the past three years, for the past two years there have been over thirty indoor flag football teams and teams have been turned away.

During 08-09 new records were established for total teams in both 4-person and 6-person volleyball, 3-on-3 basketball, and co-recreational indoor soccer. During the 08-09 year there were 1,559 intramural participants and over 500 female participants. It was estimated that the 2009–10 year and the 2010–11 have even more participants in intramural sports.[22]


Ithaca's School of Business was the first college or university business school in the world to achieve LEED Platinum Certification.[23] The College composts its dining hall waste,[24] runs a "Take It or Leave It" Green move-out program, and offers a sustainable living option.[25] It also operates an office supply collection and reuse program,[26] as well as a sustainability education program during new student orientation.[27] Ithaca received a B- grade on the Sustainable Endowments Institute's 2009 College Sustainability Report Card[28] and an A- for 2010.

Environmental record[edit]

Commitments to action on climate change[edit]

In Spring 2007, then-President Peggy R. Williams signed the American College and University President's Climate Commitment (ACUPCC), pledging Ithaca College to the task of developing a strategy and long-range plan to achieve "carbon neutrality" at some point in the future. In 2009 the Ithaca College Board of Trustees approved the Ithaca College Climate Action Plan, which calls for 100% carbon neutrality by 2050. In 2009, the Ithaca College Board of Trustees approved the Ithaca College Climate Action Plan, which calls for 100% carbon neutrality by 2050 and offers a 40-year action plan to work toward that ambitious goal.[29]

Energy profile[edit]

The college purchases 14 percent of its electricity from renewable sources and offsets 3 percent of its energy use with renewable energy credits.[30]

Energy investments[edit]

The college aims to optimize investment returns and does not invest the endowment in on-campus sustainability projects, renewable energy funds, or community development loan funds. The college's investment policy reserves the right of the investment committee to restrict investments for any reason, which could include environmental and sustainability factors.[30]

Community impact[edit]

While the Ithaca College Natural Lands has issued a statement that Ithaca College should join efforts calling for a moratorium on horizontal drilling and high volume (“slick water”) hydraulic fracturing, or fracking,[31] the college as a whole has refused to issue a statement regarding the issue.


Current president[edit]

Ithaca's current president is Thomas Rochon. Thomas Rochon was named the eighth president of Ithaca College on April 11, 2008.[32] Rochon took over as president of the college following Peggy Williams, who had announced on July 12, 2007, that she would retire from the presidency post effective May 31, 2009, following a one-year sabbatical.[33]

Former presidents[edit]

President Life Tenure
W. Grant Egbert[34] 1867–1928 1892–1924
George C. Williams[35] 1874–1971 1924–1932
Leonard B. Job[36] 1891–1981 1932–1957
Howard I. Dillingham[37] 1904–1998 1957–1970
Ellis L. Phillips Jr.[38][39] 1926–2006 1970–1975
James J. Whalen[40][41] 1927–2001 1975–1997
Peggy R. Williams[42][43] 1997–2008


Bob Iger '73, President & CEO of The Walt Disney Company

Ithaca College has 49,570 alumni in the United States. There are alumni clubs for Boston, Chicago, Connecticut, Los Angeles, Metro New York, National Capital, N. & S. Carolina, Philadelphia, Rochester (NY), San Diego, and Southern Florida.[44] Alumni events are hosted in cooperation with the specific clubs and also through a program called "IC on the Road".[45]

Following is a brief list of noteworthy Ithaca College alumni and faculty. For a more extensive list, see main entry List of Ithaca College alumni.

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 42°25′18″N 76°29′41″W / 42.4218°N 76.4947°W / 42.4218; -76.4947


  1. ^ As of June 30, 2012. "U.S. and Canadian Institutions Listed by Fiscal Year 2012 Endowment Market Value and Percentage Change in Endowment Market Value from FY 2011 to FY 2012" (PDF). 2012 NACUBO-Commonfund Study of Endowments. National Association of College and University Business Officers. 
  2. ^ Carnegie Classifications: Ithaca College Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching.
  3. ^ Survey: The Top 20 Journalism Schools - TV Week. 2013.
  4. ^ "Hollywood Reporter Names Ithaca College One of the Top 25 Film Schools", 2013
  5. ^ "U.S. News & World Report America's Best Colleges" Ranks Ithaca College in Top Ten - News Release - Ithaca College Office of Media Relations
  6. ^ Master's Universities (North) Rankings, America's Best Colleges 2010, U.S. News & World Report. 2010.
  7. ^ "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. 2009-03-13. 
  8. ^ Office of Institutional Research - Institutional Research - Ithaca College
  9. ^
  10. ^ Ithaca College International Programs
  11. ^ The Ithacan Online
  12. ^ The Ithacan Online - Awards The Ithacan
  13. ^ ACP Contests Associated Collegiate Press
  14. ^ "92 WICB - About". Retrieved 24 May 2012. 
  15. ^ Buzzsaw Haircut website
  16. ^ "Music fraternities break stereotype" The Ithacan, November 11, 2004
  17. ^ December 07, 2000 - Stories swirl around about Mascots
  18. ^ [1]
  19. ^ Ithaca College Quarterly, 2003/No. 1 - Farewell to a Legendary Coach
  20. ^ "Media gear up for Cortaca Jug", The Ithacan Online, 8 November 2007
  21. ^ Ithaca Forever
  22. ^ [2]
  23. ^ "New School of Business Building An International First for Highest "Green" Standard". Ithaca College. Retrieved 2009-06-08. 
  24. ^ "Compost Facility to be Expanded". Ithaca College. Retrieved 2009-06-08. 
  25. ^ "Sustainability at Ithaca College". Ithaca College. Retrieved 2009-06-08. 
  26. ^ "Office Supply Collection and Reuse". Ithaca College. Retrieved 2009-06-08. 
  27. ^ "Sustainability Education for Orientation". Ithaca College. Retrieved 2009-06-08. 
  28. ^ Green Report Card 2009 - Ithaca College Sustainable Endowments Institute
  29. ^ "Ithaca College Sustainability". Retrieved 1 April 2013. 
  30. ^ a b Retrieved 1 April 2013.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  31. ^ Retrieved 1 April 2013.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  32. ^ Ithaca College Selects Thomas R. Rochon As Eighth President
  33. ^ Intercom - Important News to Share
  34. ^ W. Grant Egbert - Office of the President - Ithaca College
  35. ^ George C. Williams - Office of the President - Ithaca College
  36. ^ Leonard B. Job - Office of the President - Ithaca College
  37. ^ Howard I. Dillingham - Office of the President - Ithaca College
  38. ^ Ellis L. Phillips Jr. - Office of the President - Ithaca College
  39. ^ College’s fifth president dies The Ithacan, October 05, 2006
  40. ^ James J. Whalen - Office of the President - Ithaca College
  41. ^ Ithaca College Mourns Passing of President Emeritus James J. Whalen - News Release - Ithaca College Office of Media Relations
  42. ^ Peggy R. Williams - Office of the President - Ithaca College
  43. ^ Ithaca College President Peggy R. Williams Announces Plans to Retire in 2008 - News Release - Ithaca College Office of Media Relations
  44. ^ Ithaca College:Alumni, Parents, & Friends - Alumni Association - Alumni Clubs
  45. ^ Ithaca College: Alumni, Parents, & Friends - IC on the Road
  46. ^ [3]