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Columbia College Chicago
Mission Statement

Mission Statement



The Institute is recognized as a national and international creator of original works, and presenter and collaborator of multidisciplinary programming and initiatives on the discourse of gender, culture, creativity and community. The Institute offers a dynamic and innovative approach that merges applied arts and cultural production with critical theory and academic research. Within this framework, the Institute addresses human rights, access, representation, equity, and participation, as well as race and class, using the arts and media as a central means of research, engagement, public education, and advocacy.  The Institute offers a wide range of public programs, including exhibitions, performances and panel discussions, and supports new research and original creative work through its Fellowship program.  Central to the Institute’s purpose are its goals to enhance student learning and contribute to new bodies of knowledge through curricular intersections and far-reaching collaborations locally, nationally and internationally.

Established in March 2005 as a research unit at Columbia College Chicago, the Institute is the first of its kind in the nation dedicated to the creation of new works, scholarship, education and programming about women and gender in the arts and media.

As part of Columbia College Chicago's Prioritization recommendations, the Institute joined the School of Liberal Arts and Sciences in fall 2012, enabling us to continue to build and expand the ways the Institute's work can support and deepen our students’ experiences and educational opportunities at the College through programs and curricular intersections.

  • Created and co-sponsored more than 160 programs and initiatives
  • Produced and supported 15 original works in film, documentary, theatre, photography, research and publications
  • Established the Fellowship Program that has supported the creation of new works and research by more than 37 scholars and artists
  • Champion of the artistic process, experimentation and cutting-edge innovation
  • Cross-disciplinary educational nexus
  • Enhances student learning and engagement
  • Model of programming, civic engagement, scholarship, and leadership development
  • Engages wide and diverse audiences
  • More than 100 national and international civic, cultural and academic partners
  • Offers audiences a multi-faceted laying of engagement that has a deep impact beyond a single program or initiative