What’s new at Columbia 2

By The Columbia Chronicle

Racheal Silvers

Staff Writer

Columbia 2 is a continuing education program for professionals interested in the arts and communications, which began in the spring of 1996 after Columbia College President John Duff instituted a task force to research the possibility of creating a continuing education program at Columbia.

The research focused on the competitors in Chicago’s continuing education community, the benefits of an arts and communications continuing education program, and the audience to whom the school would cater.

The task force proved that since Columbia was already well-known in the Chicago community and beyond for its superior arts and communications programs, Columbia 2 would corner that same niche in adult continuing education.

President John Duff asked Philip Klukoff, then chairperson of the English Department, to step up into the position of Associate Provost of Columbia 2.

Klukoff believes Columbia 2 ties in to Columbia College via their similar mission statements. “It goes back to the mission of Columbia College and how adult education fits in,” said Philip Klukoff. “It’s an extension of the undergraduate and graduate mission.”

According to the mission statement, “Columbia is an undergraduate and graduate college whose principle commitment is to provide a comprehensive educational opportunity in the arts, communications, and public information. Columbia’s intent is to educate students who will communicate creatively and shape the public’s perception of issues and events and who will author the culture of their time.”

Columbia 2 will in turn shape, educate, upgrade, and advance skills of professionals already working in their fields, or even those in search of a career change.

“John Duff and Burt Gall conceived this entity and allowed me room to experiment,” said Philip Klukoff. “We are currently working in conjunction with the University of Guadalajara in Mexico to develop programs for their School of Art, Architecture, and Design.”

Klukoff hopes for more collaborative programs with the autonomous University of Guadalajara in the future.

Columbia 2 can almost be considered an alternative to other, more expensive and timely graduate programs. While it has no core curriculum or required courses, Columbia 2 offers students a variety of non-credit courses and the option of earning certificates.

Currently, some of the more

popular programs at Columbia 2 are the certificate programs in Entrepreneurship and Sports/Entertainment Management. Many continuing education students take courses for self-advancement and many others are in the process of a career change. Yet, both find that certificates from Columbia 2 suffice just as well as a graduate degree.

Each semester, Columbia 2 has about 30-40 part-time faculty members, the majority of whom are drawn from Columbia College’s faculty. Philip Klukoff speaks with his former colleagues, now the chairs of the departments, and acts on their recommendations for appropriate faculty. On occasion, Klukoff will contact specific people with specialties and ask them to teach a course. Klukoff has even had people pitch courses to him.

Since the first semester of classes in the spring of 1996, enrollment has consistently risen with each semester. This semester’s enrollment taps out at an all-time high of 300 students. This year, staff members at Columbia 2 hopes to enroll 1,000 students for the Fall, Spring, and Summer sessions combined.