Campus Life

Campus Life

Named after Columbia College President R.Wright Spears (1951-1977), Spears Center for the Arts built in April 1989, is the central hub of the campus fine arts community. Located at the front of the campus adjacent to Cottingham Theatre, the Spears Center houses the Art, Dance, and Music Programs on campus. Spears Center for the Arts offers a spacious art stuido on the upper floor, practice rooms equipped with pianos for music students on the main floor, and dance floors on the bottom floor. The Goodall Gallery and Spears Concert Hall are also located a the center of the building. 

Goodall Gallery 

The Goodall Gallery (built in 1977) is located at the heart of Spears Center for the Arts. The gallery presents contemporary art exhibits year round and is open to the public. For more information about the Goodall Gallery and exhibit schedules, click the link: Goodall Gallery Webpage 

Spears Concert Hall 

The Concert Hall hosts numerous performances throughout the year including choral, ensemble, musical recitals, guest artists, opera and broadway sounds. The space is acoustically balanced and can fit an audience of 225. Dressing rooms are conveniently located beneath the stage and the space houses 2 Grand Steinway pianos, Harpsicord, and a tracker action pipe organ handcrfted by the Rudolph Von Beckerath Company. 

Upcoming Events: Spring 2017


  • 10-11 Dance Open House Weekend
  • 23 Student Recital, 12:30 p.m. CH, SCA


  • 6-10 Spring Break
  • 21 Student Recital, 12:30 p.m. Room 137, SCA
  • 23 Lecture/Recital, Ina-Esther Joost Ben-Sasson, cello, 4:00 p.m. CH SCA
  • 28 Savannah Jones, Senior Voice Recital, 7:00 p.m. CH SCA
  • 31 Spring Musical, A Grand Night For Singing, 7:30 p.m. Cottingham Theater


  • 1 Spring Musical, A Grand Night For Singing, 7:30 p.m. Cottingham Theater
  • 4 C.C. Chamber Ensemble Spring Concert, 7:00 p.m. CH, SCA
  • 6 Student Recital, 12:30 p.m. CH, SCA
  • 6 Emily Block, Senior Voice Recital, 7:00p.m. CH, SCA
  • 7 Stephanie Villamizar, Senior Voice Recital, 4:00 p.m. CH, SCA
  • 7-8 Spring Choreographers Showcase, 7:30 p.m., CT
  • 10 Jazz Combos Recital, 7:00 p.m. CH, SCA
  • 11 Spring Choral Concert, 7:00 p.m. CH, SCA
  • 14 Easter Break
  • 17 Imani Wiley-English, Senior Cello Recital, 7:00 p.m. CH, SCA
  • 18 Spears Fest
  • 20 Taylor Isaac, Senior Voice Recital, 7:00 p.m. CH SCA
  • 24-28 Music Juries
  • 26 Music Town Hall Meeting, 1:00 p.m. SCA 137
  • 29 Commencement

Parking and Directions

Visitor Parking is located in parking lots A, B, G, and I, as well as unmetered street parking. Visitor parking is also open on campus after 4:30pm, Monday-Friday. 

Download Campus Map


Contact Information:

Upcoming Events: 803.786.3746

Campus Scheduling: 803.786.3783.




Located on the upper floor of Cottingham Theatre, Griffin Arena, is dedicated in memory to Anne Frierson Griffin, Columbia College Graduate 1924 and Columbia College faculty 1953-1973. Anne Griffin rejoined Columbia College as the Blackwell Professor of Speech and Chairperson of the Department of Speech and Drama at the time Cottingham Theatre was built. She retired as head of the Department in 1968, but continued to teach until her full retirement in 1973.

The arena seats 88 in a half circle pattern leaving an open floor for small productions, including performances by the CC Players. Lighting and sound complete the area and the arena is also fitted with a built in screen and projection system. 

Parking and Directions

Visitor parking is located in parking lots A, B, G, and I as well as unmetered street parking. Visitor parking is also open on campus after 4:30pm, Monday-Friday. 

Download Campus Map

Contact Information: 

Cottignham Theatre Box Office: 803.786.3850 / 803.786.3651

Artistic Director: 803.786.3897

Campus Scheduling: 803.786.3783

Mission Statement

The Office of Residence Life and Housing works to establish and maintain a residential living and learning environment that supports the mission of Columbia College. The Residence Life staff strives to give direction, meaning, and depth to students’ collegiate experience in a safe, secure, and comfortable environment. Our staff will provide programs that foster a sense of community and appreciation of the varied needs of our diverse student population. In addition, these programs will develop personal responsibility and integrity while supporting the academic pursuits and co-curricular activities of all residential students.

Contact Us
Student Union, Lower Level B101
(803) 786-3602 -- FAX (803) 786-3125  
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Residence Life & Housing Staff 


The Director of Residence Life & Housing

The Director of Residence Life and Housing, a Master’s degree professional, is responsible for the Columbia College Residence Life and Housing Program, including residential student development and housing services, supervision of all professional staff, advisement and coordination of the judicial process and Judicial Board, and creation of an engaging and vibrant residence life program with faculty collaboration that is linked to the 4Cs of Leadership.


Director of Residence Life & Housing
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(803) 786-3602


The Area Coordinators (AC)

The two Area Coordinators are full-time Master’s/Bachelor’s degree professionals who live in the residence halls and assist the Director or Residence Life and Housing with various aspects of residential life. Each AC supervises a staff of RAs, mediates conflicts, and manages all aspects of their building(s). ACs serve in the AC On-Call schedule for the campus residence halls and serve in other committee and leadership capacities on campus.

Shade Holmes
Area Coordinator for 
McNair First-Year Center
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(803) 714-4145









Allison Davis 
Area Coordinator for Upperclass Housing
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(803) 714-4824 

The Administrative Assistant & Data Coordinator

The Administrative Assistant assists in the management and operation of the Residence Life and Student Activities Office and is the initial contact for this high-traffic office.

Sue Gerdes
Administrative Assistant
& Data Coordinator
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(803) 786-3602


Residence Life & Housing Student Staff

Assistant Area Coordinator (AAC)

The Assistant Area Coordinator is a returning undergraduate staff member with significant RA experience who is charged with managing the Cottages – Kneece and Knox Halls - and serving as a resource for the community within the Cottages. The AAC also serves in the AC On-Call schedule for the campus residence halls and provides leadership for the RAs.

Resident Assistants (RA)

Each Resident Assistant is an undergraduate staff member with at least one year of residential experience at Columbia College. The RAs are trained to provide a positive living and learning experience for resident students and are students who are chosen for their leadership and interpersonal skills. The RAs reside on the halls with the residents and serve as a resource, providing residents with programs and advisement on a variety of subjects, ranging from personal and academic issues to conflict mediation and community development. Any community life questions or concerns should be addressed initially to the RA.

Desk Coordinators and Assistants (DC and DA)

The Desk Staff that work for the Office of Residence Life and Housing and Housing play a vital role in promoting the safety and security of our residence halls. Desk Coordinators provide supervision of the desk staff and ensure that all desks are running smoothly. Desk Assistants are responsible for providing outstanding customer service to the students, faculty, staff, and visitors to Columbia College. Desk Assistants are charged with ensuring all guest and visitation policies in the residence halls are followed.

Graduate Assistants

These individuals serve in many different capacities for the Division of Student Affairs at Columbia College. They work in Student Activities and the Dean’s Office. In addition to working in these offices, they may also live in the residence halls and serve as a resource to students. Graduate Assistants living in the residence halls serve in the AC On-Call schedule for the campus residence halls.

Residence Hall Association

In a residential community, it is important that individuals have the opportunity to voice opinions, plan activities, and relay information to administrators who, along with students, make decisions about Residence Life. At Columbia College, all resident students are members and can choose to actively participate in the Residence Hall Association (RHA) to address community concerns and plan events. Contact the Residence Life staff for more information about how to get involved.


The structure of Residence Life includes the Director of Residence Life & Housing, the Area Coordinator for the McNair First-Year Living Learning Center, the Area Coordinator for Upper Class Housing, along with the Resident Assistants.




 Want to know more about us?
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RHA logoRHA logo                       


The Fine Arts Building was dedicated in memory of Ms. Cora Stackhouse Cottingham, dedicated Alumna class of 1865, in 1960. Spacious, the theatre seats 350 and is equiped with lighting and sound systems. Dressing rooms are loacted in the basement and a prop workshop is located behind the stage. The large production stage includes an aerialist rigging and dance floor for produciton purposes. 

The Cottingham Theatre hosts various performances throughout the year including theatrical plays, dance schowcases, and musical productions. Past Artists include the Columbia College Dance Company, Cambridge American Stage Tour, CC Players, Hi C's and other guest artists. 

Box Office 

The theatre box office is located in the main lobby and open performance week. 

Ticket Prices (Ticketed Events Only. Prices are subject to change):

        1 Free Complimentary Ticket: Columbia College Students

        2 Free Complimentary Ticket: Columbia College Faculty & Staff

        $5.00 Ticket: Columbia College Alumnae,

        $5.00 Other Student (College students please be prepared to show I.D). 

        $5.00 Discounted Ticket: Senior Citizen (65 & older), Military (with I.D.)

        $10.00 General Admission 

To Reserve your ticket please contact the Box Office during open hours at 803.786.3850

For questions about events, performances, group or complimentary tickets please contact Box Office Manger Courtney Truesdale at 803.786.3651.


Upcoming Events: Spring  2017

Faculty Dance Concert 

Feb 3-4 7:30pm

Spring Musical A Grand Night For Singing 

March 31-April 1 7:30pm

Spring Choreographers Showcase 

 April 7th & 8th, 7:30pm


Parking and Directions

Visitor parking is located in parking lots A, B, G, and I as well as unmetered street parking. Vistor parking is also open on campus after 4:30pm, Monday-Friday. 

Contact Information: 

Cottingham Theatre Box Office: 803.786.3850 / 803.786.3651

Artistic Director: 803.786.3897.

Campus Scheduling: 803.786.3783

Financial Literacy at Columbia College 


The Financial Literacy Program at Columbia College is designed to expand students’ personal knowledge regarding finances by providing access to adequate resources needed to make wise and informed financial decisions in school and in their early professional lives. 

Please Note

Many of the resources below are available at CashCourse, a free financial literacy website sponsored by the National Endowment for Financial Education® (NEFE®).  When you click a link to view a CashCourse resource, you will be asked to register for an account.  This is free, takes only a couple minutes, and you do not have to be a Columbia College student to take advantage of CashCourse. 

Personal Finance

Take control of your money! It is important to track spending, set a budget, and discern a need versus a want.

Track Expenses:

Create a Budget:

Rein in Overspending:

Personal Finance for Women:


If you do not have a checking and/or savings account, now is the time to get both.  There are different types of banks and accounts, and a number of factors to consider.  Click the links for an overview to help you weigh your options.


From using your Columbia College Student ID, preparing for life after college, and taking advantage of compound interest, you can spend less, save more, and be better prepared for whatever goals you have or life throws your way.

Student Discounts:

Prepare for the Future:

Saving Goals:

Compound Interest:

Credit and Debt

Credit cards can be useful, but one mistake can blemish your credit record and haunt you for years. It is important to consider the risks and benefits of credit, and learn what your options are to help manage and pay down debt.

Credit Cards:

Choosing a Credit Card:

Debt Management:

Student Loans

Worried about repaying your student loans? You do have options. Find what works for you:

Repayment Plans:

Federal Loan Information:

Repayment Relief:

Credit Reports and Scores

Good credit is critical for taking out loans, buying a car or home, and sometimes even for getting a job.  Use the resources below to find out how to get and keep a good credit score, get an annual free credit report from each of the three credit reporting agencies, as well as find out your credit score. 

Importance of Good Credit:

Credit Reports: 

Credit Score:

College Students & Identity Theft

If you have a bank account or credit cards, you should check your statements regularly.  If you notice any unfamiliar charges, you may be a victim of identity theft.  Browse the resources below for information on what steps you should take should you suspect or can prove that your identity or bank information is being used fraudulently.

ID Theft Infographic:   infographic


Steps to take:


As a student, you may or may not have to file taxes, so be sure to look into it.  Once you have that first job as a college graduate, you will definitely have to file.

Tax Basics:

IRS Information:

File for Free:

Local Tax Preparation Offices

The following is for informational purposes only. Columbia College is not providing an endorsement of the tax service providers below.

Liberty Tax Service | 4058 W Beltline Blvd, Columbia, SC 29204 | 803-540-1045

Jackson Hewitt Tax Service | 4122 W Beltline Blvd, Columbia, SC 29204 | 803-771-7444

M & M Income Tax Service |3910 Two Notch Rd # A, Columbia, SC 29204 | 803-691-9494

Cynthia’s Tax Preparation | 7403 Parklane Rd # 1, Columbia, SC 29223 | 803-462-9990

Ethel or Stroy Tax Services | 5323 N Main St, Columbia, SC 29203 | 803-754-8504

E & J’s Tax Services | 3512 Farrow Rd, Columbia, SC 29203 | 803-256-0032

Financial Aid

Understanding what financial aid options you have and how to apply is critical to your college success.  Be sure you understand what financial aid exists, fill out the FAFSA as soon as possible after January 1st, and explore what your state and institution can offer as well.

Federal Aid:


South Carolina Aid:,FamiliesMilitary.aspx

Columbia College Financial Aid Office:


Manage your money on the go! Check out these apps to help monitor your account balances, spending, and even create a budget.


Money Manager Expense & Budget

Level Money

Out in the Real World

Big decisions like shopping for an apartment or car require research.  You will also have to plan and prepare your own meals, and look out for your own well-being, all while managing your financial resources. The websites below can help you get started.

Apartment Shopping:

Car Shopping:

Healthy Eating on a Budget:

Self-Care on a Budget:

For Additional Information Contact

Division of Student Affairs    


Center for Academic and Professional Advising      



Closing Information for Spring 2015 Residents

Congratulations! You made it through the semester/year and it’s time for summer break (or graduation!). Before you leave, we have some information for you about how you can properly move out and check out of your residence hall room. Please make sure to read everything on this handout carefully and ask your RA/A or AC if you have any questions. Following this information will help to ensure that you don’t incur any damages or fines.

Please be prepared and patient and ask your guests to do the same. We appreciate your cooperation and ask that you remember that this is a busy, stressful, and often tiresome time for all of us J


We close at 5:00pm SHARP on Friday, May 8th

-Make sure you have moved all of your belongings out of the building, cleaned your room, and done a checkout with your RA/A or done an Express Checkout by that time.

-Make sure to communicate with anyone that may be coming to get you and/or helping you move out. They cannot be late and should allow for some extra time, just in case.

-Do not wait until the last minute to start cleaning and packing. It takes longer than you think. Start taking items home the weekend before exams if possible.

Only those approved by Res. Life may stay until Sat., May 9th at 6:00pm

-The Director of Residence Life & Housing will e-mail all those approved to stay, for graduation or assistance with graduation.

-Those who do not receive an approval for graduation or summer purposes must be out by May 8th at 5:00pm.

Cleaning and Damages

-If your room or bathroom will need more than a basic sweep and mop, wipe down/dust, and sanitizing, you will be charged for a cleaning fee.

-Take ALL trash and belongings not originally in the room out or you will be charged a trash fee.

-The dumpsters and recycling areas will not move…please use them and do NOT leave things in the hallways or community spaces or community trashcans. The Union loading dock also has a cardboard collection cart.

-Your RA/A will make a note of any condition that is not the same as it was when you checked in. Please do not try to explain to your RA/A who may be responsible or what happened. The RA/A will simply mark a possible damage concern. The AC will come behind the RA/A and make a final decision on whether a damage fee is warranted or not. You will be notified via CC e-mail by May 15th if you are being charged for any fees or fines. You will also be told how to appeal those charges if you do not agree.

-If the bathroom is dirty, it will be marked during your checkout time. The AC will figure out who was still present during that time and may split the cleaning charge amongst one or more parties if the cleaning issue is not clearly related to one person.

-Don’t forget to start defrosting your fridge before you move it home (24 hours at least).


Guests During Closing/Exams

-We understand that when you are moving out, it can be a challenge to escort your guests at all times. We want to be a little more lenient and understanding of that, starting May 1st. However, please remember that the safety of our community is still very important.

-Residents may check guests in starting at 9:00am (beginning May 1st) but must still be out by regular ending visitation hours.

-Guests must be properly signed in and out at all times.

-Guests do not have to be escorted only if: 1. Resident is in room but packing and unable to escort. 2. Guest is clearly moving things from room to outside. 3. Guest is not causing any disturbances or wondering around.

-Doors cannot be propped and the desk staff WILL NOT get up to open the door for anyone. If your guest does take something outside, your guest will have to wait until the door is opened by an incoming or outgoing resident.

-Overnight guests will not be allowed for any hall (only exceptions will be made by ACs) from Friday, May 1st- Friday, May 8th. This provides a better study environment.


24 Hour Quiet Hours

-We begin 24 hour quiet hours at 5:00pm on Friday, May 1st. We end 24 hour quiet hours May 8th at 5:00pm.

-RA/As will not be giving warnings. Noise violations will be documented for judicial proceedings.

-Be careful of your noise levels, even if you are moving. You are responsible for the noise your guests make.

-Thank you for your help in creating a quiet environment for exam and final project preparations!


Storage and Donations

-If you live more than 2.5 hours away from Columbia (according to a search engine site), you may place items in the storage provided in your CURRENT hall (McNair for the Cottages), at your own risk.

-You may store up to 6 items. Those items must be large appliances (fridge, TV, microwave) or plastic storage bins or a trunk. Each item must have your full name on it.

-You may collect a storage form from your AC. Complete it and bring it with you when storing your items.

-Your AC will post the times that she is accessing each hall’s storage rooms. Meet your AC during the closest day and time in the hall lobby to place items in storage. If you miss these times, there will be NO OTHER TIMES.

-If you wish to donate any items for the Food Pantry, Free Store, or Goodwill, you may access the donation collection area in your hall at any time. Please go to the closest location to drop off your items (McNair Classroom, Wesley 101, Mirse 110 and Hudson 210).


Checking Out with an RA/A

  1. Write your name on the “Spring Check-out Sign-up Sheet”  in one (1) of the 15 minute time slots that has not already been taken by another resident or marked out as not available by the RA/A.

Note: You have to sign up by 10:00pm the night before you wish to check out. You may sign up days before if you wish. Anyone that tries to sign up after 10:00pm for a checkout the next day will not be able to…you will have to do an Express Checkout instead.

  1. Write down the date and time that you signed up for, as a reminder.
  2. Have all of your belongings out of the room, the room cleaned, and be ready and present at your room at your scheduled time. Your RA/A will meet you there, review the room, mark the condition of the room on your already-started Room Condition Report (your RA/A will bring this RCR), have you sign, take your room key, and give you a copy of the RCR. Do not leave or consider yourself properly checked out until you have a copy of the RCR and have turned in your key.
  3. You may leave.
  4. Do all of this by 5:00pm on May 8th (or 6:00pm on May 9th for graduating seniors).
  5. Check your CC e-mail in about a week to see if you have been billed for any damages or fines.

Note: If you are late for your checkout time or you are not ready, your RA/A will not check you out in person. You will be given an Express Checkout envelope and will not be allowed to check out in person since you missed your time. You may not find another staff member to check you out either.

Express Checkout

  1. Write your name and room number on the “Express Checkout” list next to your RA/A’s room.
  2. Take an Express Checkout envelope (white with writing on front). If there are none left next to your RA/A’s room, please get one from your AC’s office or the Residence Life office in the Union (or outside the Residence Life door).
  3. Complete the information on the front of the envelope and sign.
  4. Place your room key(s) in the envelope and seal it up (only when everything is out of your room and you are leaving).
  5. Drop your completed Express Checkout envelope in the labeled wooden Key Box in your hall lobby (in Knox for Kneece residents) or in the drop box outside of the Residence Life office.
  6. Do all of this by 5:00pm on May 8th (or 6:00pm on May 9th for graduating seniors).
  7. Check your CC e-mail in about a week to see if you have been billed for any damages or fines.

Note: If you fail to follow one of these sets of instructions fully, you will be charged $50 for an improper checkout. No exceptions.

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