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Office hours: Monday - Friday, 8 a.m. - 5 p.m. CST

Location: Atkins-Holman Student Center


Phone number: (573) 875-7420

Fax number: (573) 875-7235

The first-year experience

Welcome prospective and new Cougars! Columbia College is excited to have you join our community. Whether you’re a prospective student, new freshman or a student transferring from another institution, we want you to be successful. This page is dedicated to helping you navigate your transition to Columbia College and your first year on campus. Be sure to take some time to view each section to familiarize yourself with all of the opportunities available to you as a Columbia College Cougar. We are CC!

Apply for admission

Student with advisor picking classes

As a prospective student, your first step in joining our community is to complete the application process. Whether you’re a new student, transfer student or international student, our admissions page will help you navigate the specifics of applying.


New Student Registration Day

Students hugging and happy

New Student Registration Day is designed with first-year college students’ needs in mind. Registration Day will provide you with important and useful information while you have a chance to meet other new students, learn about our traditions and involvement opportunities, and register for classes.


Welcome Week activities

Welcome Week is an exciting time for new students. It is an opportunity to meet new people, prepare for classes, and get connected to resources. At Columbia College we pride ourselves in building a happy, healthy, and connected community. That process starts before classes begin. If you are a transfer or international student, be sure to attend the Welcome Week events catered to your specific population and then join us for the other Welcome Week festivities on campus. New and transfer Students, make it a point to check out all of the Welcome Week activities including Cougar Day Trips. The activities are planned with your success in mind.

New Student Winter Welcome

Dr. Scott Dalrymple shaking hands with new student

All new and transfer students coming to the traditional campus during the Spring Semester should attend this hands-on introduction to Columbia College, where you and your family will learn the secrets to student success on campus. We want to help you thrive during your college experience, and it all starts with getting to know your new school. This event has it all: traditions, friendly and helpful students and staff, and an introduction to a wealth of campus resources.

Spring orientation registration

Foundations Course

Students lying on floor in a circle with hands extended

Foundations is a course designed to help first-year students navigate college life. The 16-week seminar will investigate academic preparation and support, building relationships, access to resources, investment in your overall college experience, and personal and professional growth. The course is strongly encouraged for first-time freshman and helps new students understand collegiate expectations.

About the course

Online orientation

Students working online in a computer lab

Columbia College’s New & Transfer Student Online Orientation is your one-stop shop to make sure you are prepared for the start of classes. It is a comprehensive look at getting started, preparing for classes, and getting and staying connected. The Online Orientation contains valuable information for new students and can be used as a resource throughout your entire first-year experience.

Watch videos

Involvement on campus

Students covered in mud

Be sure to become involved on campus. Whether living on or off campus, there are hundreds of ways to engage with our campus community. As a new student, you will have opportunities through Orientation and Hey Day to be introduced to the many ways you can get involved on campus and in the community. Whether you're interested in service, participating in organizations, induction into an honor society, student employment or holding a leadership position on campus, Columbia College has something for everyone. Stay in the know by checking CougarLink, for up-to-date campus activity information.

Get involved

Living on campus

Students playing a game living on campus

We want Columbia College to be your home away from home. Our residential facilities provide students a great place to live, hang out and have fun. As a new student, we know you will have lots of questions about living on campus. Visit our Residential Life web page and be sure to check out the frequently asked questions to learn more.

About residential life

Dining services

Students in Cougar Cafe visiting

Columbia College offers students two options for dining on campus. Dulany Hall is cafeteria-style dining, while Cougar Café is a café-style menu with sandwiches, drinks and coffee. Both dining facilities provide delicious food and are ready to serve you. Check out the meal plan options for students living on and off campus. It’s a great way to save money and get a fantastic meal.

Dining services

Spirit & traditions

Students in Gym with Scooter

As a new student at Columbia College, you will have a lot to learn about campus. Our Spirit & Traditions page will introduce you to information about our campus culture, Cougar pride, and long-standing campus traditions. Get a glimpse of some of the Orientation traditions before you arrive to campus.

Spirit and traditions

Parent resources

Parents hugging student

Parenting a college student can be an adventure. At Columbia College, we provide parents with useful resources that can help you support your child. We understand this adventure is a joint effort between you and the institution. It is our hope that by working together, we will help your child succeed and persist to graduation.

Resources for parents

Student handbook

Student holding handbook

The Student Policies Library details the student handbook in a one-stop shop of important and useful information. It houses all of your rights and responsibilities as a student. As a student, you are responsible for reading and understanding the contents of the handbook.

Student policies

In compliance with the Clery Act, the College discloses crime statistics for crimes committed on campus, in certain off-campus buildings, or on property owned/controlled by the College during the last three years. The Annual Security Report and Annual Fire Safety Report can be obtained in paper copy by contacting the Campus Safety Office and electronic versions can be obtained by visiting the following link:


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