Colorado College

Colorado College

Coordinates: 39°30′43″N 84°44′05″W / 39.511905°N 84.734674°W / 39.511905; -84.734674

Colorado College
Colorado College seal
Motto Scientia et Disciplina
Established 1874
Type Private
Endowment US $400.5 million[1]
President Jill Tiefenthaler
Undergraduates 2,011
Location Colorado Springs, Colorado, USA
Campus Urban, 90 Acres
Colors Gold and Black
Nickname Tigers
Colorado College logo

The Colorado College (familiarly known as CC) is a private liberal arts college in Colorado Springs, Colorado, in the foothills of the Rocky Mountains. It was founded in 1874 by Thomas Nelson Haskell.[2] The college enrolls approximately 2,000 undergraduates at its 90-acre (36 ha) campus, 70 miles (110 km) south of Denver in Colorado Springs.

Colorado College is known for its non-conventional "block plan," which divides the year into eight academic terms called "blocks"; a single class is taken during each block. CC routinely ranks very high in the U.S. News & World Report listings for liberal arts colleges.

Colorado College is affiliated with the Associated Colleges of the Midwest. Most sports teams are in the NCAA Division III, with the exception of Division I teams in men's hockey and women's soccer.



Colorado College was founded in 1874 on land designated by U.S. Civil War veteran General William Jackson Palmer, the founder of the Denver and Rio Grande Railroad and of Colorado Springs.[3] Founder Thomas Nelson Haskell, described it as a coeducational liberal arts college in the tradition of Oberlin College in Ohio.[2] Like many U.S. colleges and universities that have endured from the 19th century it now is secular in outlook, though it retains its liberal arts focus.

Cutler Hall, the college's first building was completed in 1880 and the first degrees were conferred in 1882. The Beta-Omega Chapter of The Kappa Sigma Fraternity was chartered in 1904. William F. Slocum, president from 1888 to 1917, oversaw the initial building of the campus, expanded the library and recruited top scholars in a number of fields.[3] In 1930 Shove Chapel was erected by Mr. John Gray, to meet the religious needs of the students (though Colorado College is not religiously affiliated).


Russell T. Tutt Science Center at Colorado College

The college offers more than 80 majors, minors, and specialized programs including: Southwest studies, feminist and gender studies, Asian studies, biochemistry, environmental science, neuroscience, Latin American studies, Russian and Eurasian studies, and American cultural studies, as well as an across-the-curriculum writing program. In addition to its undergraduate programs, the college offers a Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT) degree. Tutt Library has approximately half a million bound volumes.

Block Plan

Colorado College follows an unconventional "block plan"; in which students study one subject for three and a half week "blocks", which advocates say allows for more lab time, for research and study in the field, more intensive learning experiences and fewer distractions. Blocks are only three weeks long during the summer session, during which there are also graduate blocks of differing lengths. In parallel with the students, professors teach only one block at a time. Classes are generally capped at 25 (32 for two professors) to encourage a more personalized academic experience.

Rankings and admissions

Colorado College perennially ranks in the top tier of liberal arts colleges in the U.S. News & World Report rankings, most recently ranging from a high of 19th in 1999 to a low of 33rd in 2005. In a January 2004 ranking of all colleges and universities by Kiplingers magazine, it placed 31st. In the 2010 U.S. News rankings it was 24th among liberal arts colleges, and 21st place in Best Values among all national colleges.[4][5] In 2009, Forbes rated it 53rd of America's Best Colleges.[6]

Colorado College has one of the highest retention rates of any college or university in the country at 96 percent. Colorado College also has one of the nation's lowest acceptance rates, at 24 percent, with a very high yield at 48 percent. The median ACT of the class of 2012 is 31, and one-fourth of the class graduated in the top 1 percent of their high school class.[7]


In 2009, Colorado College developed a sustainability plan and implemented the “aCClimate 14” conservation campaign. The campus saved $100,000 in utility costs and cut greenhouse gas emissions by 378 metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalent during the campaign. Other sustainability initiatives at CC include: a 25-kilowatt solar PV array, composting of kitchen and dining waste, and a singlestream recycling program.


Edith Kinney Gaylord Cornerstone Arts Center at Colorado College

Since the mid-1950s, new facilities include three large residence halls, Worner Campus Center, Tutt Library, Olin Hall of Science and the Barnes Science Center, Honnen Ice Rink, Boettcher Health Center, Schlessman Pool, Armstrong Hall of Humanities, Palmer Hall, El Pomar Sports Center, and Packard Hall of Music and Art. Bemis, Cossitt, Cutler, Montgomery, and Palmer Halls are some of the remaining turn-of-the-century structures on the National Register of Historic Places, along with the William I. Spencer Center.

The face of campus changed again at the beginning of the 21st century with construction of the Western Ridge Housing Complex, which offers apartment-style living for upper-division students and completion of the Russell T. Tutt Science Center. The east campus has been expanded, and is now home to the Greek Quad and several small residence halls known as “theme houses.”

Other notable buildings include Tutt Library, designed by Skidmore, Owings and Merrill, and Packard Hall, the music building, designed by Edward Larrabee Barnes.

Edith Kinney Gaylord Cornerstone Arts Center

Colorado College’s Edith Kinney Gaylord Cornerstone Arts Center, completed in 2008 and located at the intersection of a performing arts corridor in Colorado Springs, was designed to foster creativity and interdisciplinary collaboration. It is home to the college’s film, drama and dance departments and contains a large theater, several smaller performance spaces, a screening room, the I.D.E.A Space gallery, and classrooms, among other rooms. Architect Antoine Predock designed the building with input from professors and students.


Map of CC

The school's sports teams are nicknamed Tigers, though in 1994 a student referendum to change the name to the Cutthroats (Trout) narrowly failed. Colorado College competes at the NCAA Division III level in all sports except men's hockey, in which it participates in the NCAA Division I Western Collegiate Hockey Association, and women's soccer, where it competes as an NCAA Division I team in Conference USA. CC dropped its intercollegiate athletic programs in football, softball, and women's water polo following the 2008-09 academic year.

The Colorado College men's ice hockey program competes well for such a small school. The Tigers won the NCAA Division I championship twice (1950, 1957), were runners up three times (1952, 1955, 1996) and have made the NCAA Tournament eighteen times, including eleven times since 1995.[8] In 1996, 1997, and 2005, CC played in the Frozen Four, finishing second in 1996. Fifty-five CC Tigers have been named All-Americans.[9] NHL Hall of Fame coach Bob Johnson coached the Tigers from 1963 to 1966.[10] Despite the relatively small size of the school, the hockey team is often ranked quite highly nationally, although it has been over 50 years since the Tigers last won an NCAA title. Their current coach is Scott Owens, who played for Colorado College and graduated from the school in 1979.

Notable people

Several CC alumni are engaged in political careers. Its graduates include Lynne Cheney, wife of former U.S. Vice President Dick Cheney, and their two daughters, as well as U.S. Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar, and Representative Diana DeGette.

Other well-known government figures, such as Senior Advisor to President Obama David Axelrod, former CIA Director James Woolsey and White House Chief Economic Advisor Martin Neil Baily, have seen their children graduate from CC in recent years. The school is regarded to have a distinguished faculty, noted for outstanding teaching and a closeness to students in an environment where no class exceeds 25, and an end-of-block breakfast or dinner at a professor's home is a common gathering. The college also owns a nearby cabin to convene classes, as well as a more expansive mountain campus known as the "Baca," located in Crestone, Colorado.

While the focus at Colorado College is primarily on teaching, and its academics involve a high level of rigor and intensity on the block plan, a significant number of faculty are widely published and renowned in their fields. Professor Dennis Showalter, the 2005 recipient of the Samuel Eliot Morison Prize for Lifetime Achievement in Military History, is an expert on World War II, a Distinguished Visiting Professor at West Point and the United States Air Force Academy, Reviewer for the History Book Club, and author of Tannenberg: Clash of Empires, the 1992 winner of the Paul Birdsall Prize of the American Historical Association. In 2005, he published the first single volume dual military biography of Patton and Rommel, Men of War.

Notable music and arts representatives include Susan Grace, a pianist with appearances at Carnegie Hall, Stephen Scott, a neo-classical composer, and Ofer Ben-Amots, an Israeli composer. Filmmaker Marc Webb (class of 1995) was nominated for several awards including two Golden Globes for his 2009 film (500) Days of Summer.

Presidents of Colorado College

Colorado College has about 16 presidents and acting presidents since its founding:[11]

  • James Dougherty, 1875-1876
  • Edward P. Tenney, 1876-1884
  • William F. Slocum, 1888-1917
  • Clyde A. Duniway, 1917-1924
  • Charles Brown Hershey, 1933-1934 (acting) and 1943-1945 (acting)
  • Thurston J. Davies, 1934-1948
  • William Gill, 1949-1955
  • Louis T. Benezet, 1955-1963
  • Lloyd E. Worner, 1963-1981
  • Thomas Cronin, 1991 (acting)
  • Gresham Riley, 1981-1992
  • Michael Grace, 1992-1993 (acting)
  • Kathryn Mohrman, 1993-2002
  • Richard F. Celeste, 2002-2011
  • Jill Tiefenthaler, 2011-present


  • Ofer Ben-Amots, classical Israeli-American composer
  • Peter Blasenhiem, Latin American historian, Brazlianist [12]
  • Thomas Cronin, political scientist and author
  • Edward Diller, German literary scholar and author
  • J. Glenn Gray, philosopher, author and translator
  • Steven Hayward, Canadian poet and author
  • Tass Kelso, botanist
  • Eric Leonard, geologist
  • Robert Loevy, political scientist
  • David Mason, poet
  • Douglas Monroy, historian [13]
  • Paul Myrow, geologist
  • Carol Neel, medieval historian [14]
  • CJ Pascoe, sociologist and author
  • Andrew Price-Smith, political scientist, author on health security, environmental security, pandemic influenza
  • Tomi-Ann Roberts, social psychologist, feminist [15][16]
  • Stephen Scott, neo-classical composer
  • Dennis Showalter, military historian
  • Elmo Scott Watson, Class of 1916, journalist and college professor who specialized in the American West
  • Christine Smith Siddoway, geologist, Antarctica researcher [17]
  • Mike Siddoway, mathematician

Graduating professionals

  • Neal Baer, television producer/writer and pediatrician
  • Dee Bradley Baker, voice actor
  • Eric Bransby,[18] muralist
  • Vincent Bzdek,[19] news editor of The Washington Post, author of "Woman of the House" and "The Kennedy Legacy"
  • Elizabeth Cheney, attorney, co-founder of Keep America Safe, daughter of former Vice President Dick Cheney and Lynne Cheney
  • Lynne Cheney, wife of former Vice President Dick Cheney, novelist, conservative scholar, and former talk-show host
  • Mary Cheney, former campaign aide, daughter of former Vice President Dick Cheney and Lynne Cheney
  • Diana DeGette, U.S. House of Representatives, attorney
  • Gregg Easterbrook, writer
  • Randall Edwards, State treasurer of Oregon
  • Mark Fiore, Pulitzer Prize-winning political cartoonist
  • Lori Garver, deputy NASA administrator
  • Glenna Goodacre, class of '61, designer of Sacagawea on the U.S. golden dollar coin
  • James Heckman, class of '65, winner of 2000 Nobel Prize for Economics
  • Kaui Hart Hemmings,[20] novelist, author of "The Descendants" and "House of Thieves"
  • Mabel Barbee Lee, writer
  • Jane Lubchenco, marine ecologist and environmental scientist, NOAA Administrator
  • Marcia McNutt, geophysicist, director of U.S. Geological Survey, science advisor to U.S. secretary of the interior[21]
  • Ted Morton, politician
  • Philip Perry, attorney, former acting associate attorney general at Department of Justice, former general counsel of Office of Management and Budget, and former general counsel of Department of Homeland Security
  • Gregor Robertson, mayor of Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
  • Ann Royer, painter, sculptor
  • Ken Salazar, United States Secretary of the Interior, former United States senator
  • Timothy J. Sexton,[22] Academy Award nominated screenwriter for film ("Children of Men") and television
  • Thom Shanker,[23] Pentagon correspondent at The New York Times
  • Liang Shih-chiu, academic
  • Steven Stevenson, academic
  • Richard H. Stallings, politician
  • Bert Stiles, pilot and author
  • Sebastian Suhl,[24] chief operating officer, Prada S.p.A.
  • Marjorie E. Thompson, British peace activist and author
  • Abigail Washburn, clawhammer banjo player and singer
  • Marc Webb, music video, short film and motion picture director ("(500) Days of Summer")



Colorado College operates National Public Radio Member Station KRCC-FM. In 1944, KRCC began as a two-room public address system in the basement of Bemis Hall. Professor Woodson "Chief" Tyree, Director of Radio and Drama Department at Colorado College was the founder and inspirational force in the program that one day became KRCC-FM. In 1946, KRCC moved to South Hall (where Packard Hall now stands) on campus where two students, Charles "Bud" Edmonds '51, and Margaret Merle-Smith '51, were instrumental in securing a war surplus FM transmitter. KRCC began over the air broadcasting in April 1951 as the first non-commercial educational FM radio station in the state of Colorado.

Today, KRCC broadcasts through a series of eleven transmitters and translators throughout southern Colorado and a portion of northern New Mexico. KRCC's main transmitter, atop Cheyenne Mountain, broadcasts three separate HD multi-cast channels, including a channel run completely by Colorado College students called the SOCC (Sounds of Colorado College).

Free speech concerns on campus

The civil liberties organization Foundation for Individual Rights in Education has named Colorado College on its Red Alert list for several years over its treatment of two students who distributed a satirical flyer which parodied the college's Feminist and Gender Studies newsletter.[27] Colorado College's speech code prohibits any act that causes any individual or group "ridicule, embarrassment, harassment, intimidation or other such result."


  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 March 15, 2010. 
  2. ^ a b Loevy, R. 11 Myths About Colorado College. Retrieved on: 2010-05-19.
  3. ^ a b Colorado College. History of Colorado College. Retrieved on: 2010-05-19.
  4. ^ Best Colleges 2010 - Liberal Arts Colleges. U.S. News and World Report. Retrieved on: 2010-05-19.
  5. ^ Best Colleges: Best Values: Liberal Arts Colleges. U.S. News and World Report. Retrieved on: 2010-05-19
  6. ^ "America's Best Colleges". 2009-08-05. 
  7. ^ Sherry, Allison (2008-06-03). "College admissions miss "risks"". Denver Post. 
  8. ^ Colorado College | Ice Hockey History NCAA Tournament
  9. ^ Colorado College | Ice Hockey History All-Americans
  10. ^ Colorado College | Ice Hockey History Coaches
  11. ^ CC Library
  12. ^
  13. ^
  14. ^
  15. ^ Tomi-Ann Roberts
  16. ^
  17. ^
  18. ^ Eric Bransby: Draftsman and Muralist; essay by William Underwood Eiland
  19. ^ Vincent Bzdek | Authors | Macmillan
  20. ^ Kaui Hart Hemmings: The Descendants: Literature | KQED Public Media for Northern CA
  21. ^ "California: Leader for Geological Survey". The New York Times. 2009-10-27. 
  22. ^ Timothy J. Sexton - IMDb
  23. ^ Shanker, Thom. The New York Times. 
  24. ^ Prada Says It Isn’t in Talks to Sell Stake Amid Buyout Interest - Bloomberg
  25. ^ a b
  26. ^ a b
  27. ^ Colorado College: Students Found Guilty for Satirical Flyer,, March 31, 2008.

External links

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