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Ithaca College

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Ithaca College

Ithaca College
The Ithaca College Seal
Motto Commitment to Excellence
Established 1892
Type Private
Endowment $243.3 million[1]
President Thomas Rochon
Academic staff 739
Admin. staff 1,083
Students 6,723
Undergraduates 6,234
Postgraduates 489
Location Ithaca, NY, USA
Campus Small city, 757 acres (3.06 km2)
Colors Blue and gold          
Athletics NCAA Division IIIEmpire 8
Nickname Bombers
Affiliations NAICU
The Ithaca College Logo

Ithaca College is a coeducational, nonsectarian private college located on the South Hill of Ithaca, New York, United States. The school was founded by William Egbert in 1892 as a conservatory of music. The college has a strong liberal arts core, but also offers several pre-professional programs and some graduate programs.[2] The college is also known internationally for its communications program, the Roy H. Park School of Communications, which was most recently ranked as a top school for journalism,[3] film[4] and media.[5] The college is set against the backdrop of Cayuga Lake, the city of Ithaca, and several waterfalls and gorges. The college is perhaps best known for its large list of alumni who play or have played substantial roles in the worlds of media and entertainment.

Ithaca College has been ranked among the top ten master's universities in the North by U.S. News & World Report every year since 1996.[6] For the 2014 rankings, the college was ranked eighth in this category.[7] Ithaca College is also consistently named among the best colleges in the nation by Princeton Review, with the annual guide also ranking the college at #1 for radio and #7 for theater.[8]



Ithaca College was founded as the Ithaca Conservatory of Music in 1892 when a local violin teacher, William Grant Egbert, rented four rooms and arranged for the instruction of eight students. For nearly seven decades the institution flourished in the city of Ithaca, adding to its music curriculum the study of elocution, dance, physical education, speech correction, radio, business, and the liberal arts. In 1931 the conservatory was chartered as a private college. The college was originally housed in the Boardman House, that later became the Ithaca College Museum of Art, and it was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1971.[9]

Modern era

"Textor Ball", a modern art sculpture on the roof of the Textor lecture halls.

By 1960, some 2,000 students were in attendance. A modern campus was built on South Hill in the sixties, and students were shuttled between the old and new during the construction. The hillside campus continued to grow in the ensuing 30 years to accommodate more than 6,000 students.

As the campus expanded, the college also began to expand its curriculum. By the 1990s, some 2,000 courses in more than 100 programs of study were available in the college's five schools. The school attracts a multicultural student body with representatives from almost every state and from 78 foreign countries.[10]


Ithaca College's current campus was built in the 1960s on South Hill. In 1968 the College's final academic department moved to the South Hill campus from downtown, making the move complete.

Satellite campuses

Besides its Ithaca campus, Ithaca College has also operated satellite campuses in other cities. The Ithaca College London Center has been in existence since 1972. Ithaca runs the Ithaca College Los Angeles Program at the James B. Pendleton Center. Additionally, there is an Ithaca College Washington Semester Program, and a recently launched Ithaca College New York City Center.[11]

Former programs include the Ithaca College Antigua Program and the Ithaca College Walkabout Down Under Program in Australia.

Ithaca College also operates direct enrollment exchange programs with several universities, including Griffith University, La Trobe University, Murdoch University, and University of Tasmania (Australia); Chengdu Sport University and Beijing Sport University (China); University of Hong Kong; Masaryk University (Czech Republic); Akita International University and University of Tsukuba (Japan); Hanyang University (Korea); Nanyang Technological University (Singapore); University of Valencia (Spain); and Jönköping University (Sweden).[12]


The college offers a curriculum with more than 100 degree programs in its five schools.


Until recently, several cross-disciplinary degree programs along with the Center for the Study of Culture, Race, and Ethnicity were housed in the Division of Interdisciplinary and International Studies; however, starting spring 2011, the division was eliminated and its programs, centers and institutes were absorbed within other schools.[13]

As of the 2012-2013 academic year, Television-Radio and Business Administration were the two most popular majors, while the School of Humanities & Sciences had the most students overall.[14]

Student life

Media and publications

With its top-ranked Roy H. Park School of Communications, Ithaca College is well known for its several prominent student-run media vehicles, including:

  • The Ithacan is Ithaca College's official weekly newspaper that is written, edited and published by students. The Ithacan and its staff have won over 200 major collegiate journalism awards and is generally recognized as one of the top student-run newspapers in the country. Most notably, the newspaper is a consistent recipient of the Associated Collegiate Press' National Pacemaker Award; it has received the Newspaper Pacemaker Award five times (most recently in 2008) and the Online Pacemaker Award four times (most recently in 2013).[15] The Ithacan and its staff have won over 200 major collegiate journalism awards, most notably, the Associated Collegiate Press' National Pacemaker Award, which it has won five times, most recently in 2008.[16][17] The Pacemaker has been widely considered the "Pulitzer Prize of collegiate journalism."[18]
  • Academy of Television Arts & Sciences.[20] ICTV is housed and operated in the Roy H. Park School of Communications. Approximately 15 to 25 production teams operate simultaneously, utilizing around 300 volunteers each semester. Programming varies by semester, but typically includes news and sports, comedy, drama, game shows, reality programs and children's shows.
  • WICB is a student-operated, 4,100 Watt FM station that serves Tompkins County and beyond, reaching from northern Pennsylvania to Lake Ontario, with a potential audience of over 250,000. The majority of programming on WICB - which broadcasts from 91.7 on the FM band - is modern rock, but the station also airs a number of specialty shows, which includes a number of genres (including blues, Broadway, jam band music and "homeless" music) that is not normally heard on public airwaves. Recently, readers of the Ithaca Times voted 92 WICB "Best Radio Station." WICB has also won the MTV U's Woodie Award for Best College Radio, while the Princeton Review ranks WICB the number one college radio station in the country.[21]
  • Buzzsaw Magazine, formerly Buzzsaw Haircut, was founded in 1999 and is an independent monthly alternative magazine written, produced and distributed by Ithaca College students. It is a progressive publication with a goal to "publish original creative journalism, commentary and satire that works to deconstruct society, pop culture, politics, college life and dominant Western beliefs." The faculty adviser is prominent media critic [23]
  • Park Productions is a professional production unit within the Roy H. Park School of Communications which allows students to collaborate with faculty and industry professionals to create interdisciplinary media projects. Park Productions partners with community organizations, government agencies, and higher education institutions and has produced over 200 titles including documentaries, feature films, shorts, commercials, museum exhibits, television programs, educational, corporate, and web-based media. Awards and juried screenings include LA Webfest, Mexico International Film Festival, CINE Awards, Chicago International Film Festival, Official selections at Miami, University Film and Video Festival, Cinema in Industry Awards, Multiple International Communicator Awards, Oberhausen, Montreal, Palm Springs, and Hudson Valley Film Festivals.[24]

Greek life

Historically, various independent and national [25] As of 2008, three recognized Greek organizations remain on campus, all of which are music-oriented:

However, there are various Greek letter organizations at Ithaca College that are unaffiliated with the school, and therefore not subject to the same housing privileges or rules that contribute to the safety of their members such as non-hazing and non-drinking policies. Additionally, while uncommon, it is permitted for Ithaca College students to pledge for Greek houses affiliated with Cornell University.


The Ithaca athletics nickname "Bombers" is unique in NCAA athletics, and the origins of the nickname are obscure. Ithaca College's sports teams were originally named the Cayugas, but the name was changed to the Bombers sometime in the 1930s. Several possibilities for the change have been posited. The most common explanation is that the school's baseball uniforms—white with navy blue pinstripes and an interlocking "IC" on the left chest—bear a striking resemblance to the distinctive home uniforms of the New York Yankees, who are known as the Bronx Bombers. It may also have referred to the Ithaca basketball team of that era and its propensity for half-court "bombs". Grumman Aircraft also manufactured airplanes including bombers in Ithaca for many years. The first “Bombers” reference on record was in the December 17, 1938 issue of the Rochester Times-Union in a men’s basketball article.[26]

The name has at times sparked controversy for its perceived martial connotations. It is an occasional source of umbrage from Ithaca's prominent pacifist community, but the athletics department has consistently stated it has no interest in changing the name. The athletics logo has in the past incorporated World War II era fighter planes, but currently does not, and the school does not currently have a physical mascot to personify the name. In 2010 the school launched a contest to choose one. It received over 250 suggestions and narrowed the field down to three: a phoenix, a flying squirrel, and a Lake Beast. In June 2011, President Rochon announced that the school would discontinue the search due to opposition in the alumni community.[27]

Ithaca is a member of the NCAA's Division III, the Empire Eight Conference, and the Eastern College Athletic Conference. Ithaca has one of Division III's strongest athletic programs. The Bombers have won a total of 15 national titles in seven team sports and five individual sports.

Coached by Jim Butterfield[28] for 27 years, the football team has won three NCAA Division III National Football Championships in 1979, 1988 and 1991 (a total surpassed only by Augustana, Mount Union and Wisconsin-Whitewater). Bomber football teams made a record seven appearances in the Division III national championship game, the Amos Alonzo Stagg Bowl, which has since been surpassed by Mount Union in 2003. The Bombers play the SUNY Cortland Red Dragons for the Cortaca Jug, which was added in 1959 to an already competitive rivalry. The matchup is one of the most prominent in Division III college football.[29]

Most recently, the women's crew won back-to-back NCAA Division III championships in 2004 and 2005.

Women's soccer has won two national championships in Division III and is consistently ranked in the top 20 nationally.

The Men's Wrestling team won NCAA Division III National Championships in 1989, 1990 and 1994.

This past year in 2013, Paula Miller, head of Woman's Swimming team completed her 30th year as head coach of the Ithaca Bombers. She has led the team to many victories. The past four years the Bombers have been undefeated throughout their season defeating tough competition. Ithaca has finished first or second at 25 of the past 29 state meets. The Bombers have also won the Empire 8 crown in each of the past nine seasons.

The 2013-2014 season ended with regaining the NCAA Division III Championship trophy.

Ithaca is also home to more than 60 club sports, many of which compete regularly against other colleges in leagues and tournaments.

Ithaca Forever

Ithaca Forever is the official alma mater or school song of Ithaca College.[30]

Ithaca Forever
Ithaca, forever shine your light on me
In our hearts together we shall always be
And here's to Ithaca, my Ithaca how beautiful you are,
Your Towers high upon South Hill, reach from stone to star.

Ithaca, forever I'll recall a smile,
Clasp a hand in friendship, walk a snowy mile,
And here's to Ithaca, my Ithaca - Alma Mater true,
Although I leave Cayuga's shore, I'll remember you.

Ithaca, forever guide us on our way,
Like a shining beacon, light our night and day,
And here's to Ithaca, my Ithaca, how bright your vision seems,
May all your sons and daughters dare to live their dreams.


Along with Intercollegiate athletics, Ithaca College has a rather large Intramural sport program. This extracurricular program serves approximately 25% of the undergraduate population yearly. Fourteen traditional team activities are offered throughout the year and include: basketball, flag football, kickball, soccer, softball, ultimate frisbee, ski racing, and volleyball.

For most activities divisions are offered for men’s, women’s, and co-recreational teams. Throughout the year usually two or more activities run concurrently and participants are able to play on a single sex team and co-recreational team for each activity. The most popular activities recently have been 5-on-5 basketball with over forty teams entered for the past three years, for the past two years there have been over thirty indoor flag football teams and teams have been turned away.

During 08-09 new records were established for total teams in both 4-person and 6-person volleyball, 3-on-3 basketball, and co-recreational indoor soccer. During the 08-09 year there were 1,559 intramural participants and over 500 female participants. It was estimated that the 2009–10 year and the 2010–11 have even more participants in intramural sports.[31]


Ithaca's School of Business was the first college or university business school in the world to achieve LEED Platinum Certification.[32] The College composts its dining hall waste,[33] runs a "Take It or Leave It" Green move-out program, and offers a sustainable living option.[34] It also operates an office supply collection and reuse program,[35] as well as a sustainability education program during new student orientation.[36] Ithaca received a B- grade on the Sustainable Endowments Institute's 2009 College Sustainability Report Card[37] and an A- for 2010.

Environmental record

Commitments to action on climate change

In Spring 2007, then-President Peggy R. Williams signed the American College and University President's Climate Commitment (ACUPCC), pledging Ithaca College to the task of developing a strategy and long-range plan to achieve "carbon neutrality" at some point in the future. In 2009 the Ithaca College Board of Trustees approved the Ithaca College Climate Action Plan, which calls for 100% carbon neutrality by 2050. In 2009, the Ithaca College Board of Trustees approved the Ithaca College Climate Action Plan, which calls for 100% carbon neutrality by 2050 and offers a 40-year action plan to work toward that ambitious goal.[38]

Energy profile

The college purchases 14 percent of its electricity from renewable sources and offsets 3 percent of its energy use with renewable energy credits.[39]

Energy investments

The college aims to optimize investment returns and does not invest the endowment in on-campus sustainability projects, renewable energy funds, or community development loan funds. The college's investment policy reserves the right of the investment committee to restrict investments for any reason, which could include environmental and sustainability factors.[39]

Community impact

While the Ithaca College Natural Lands has issued a statement that Ithaca College should join efforts calling for a moratorium on horizontal drilling and high volume (“slick water”) hydraulic fracturing, or fracking,[40] the college as a whole has refused to issue a statement regarding the issue.


Current president

Ithaca's current president is Thomas Rochon. Thomas Rochon was named the eighth president of Ithaca College on April 11, 2008.[41] Rochon took over as president of the college following Peggy Williams, who had announced on July 12, 2007, that she would retire from the presidency post effective May 31, 2009, following a one-year sabbatical.[42]

Former presidents

President Life Tenure
W. Grant Egbert[43] 1867–1928 1892–1924
George C. Williams[44] 1874–1971 1924–1932
Leonard B. Job[45] 1891–1981 1932–1957
Howard I. Dillingham[46] 1904–1998 1957–1970
Ellis L. Phillips Jr.[47][48] 1926–2006 1970–1975
James J. Whalen[49][50] 1927–2001 1975–1997
Peggy R. Williams[51][52] 1997–2008


Bob Iger '73, President & CEO of The Walt Disney Company

Ithaca College has 49,570 alumni in the United States. There are alumni clubs for Boston, Chicago, Connecticut, Los Angeles, Metro New York, National Capital, N. & S. Carolina, Philadelphia, Rochester (NY), San Diego, and Southern Florida.[53] Alumni events are hosted in cooperation with the specific clubs and also through a program called "IC on the Road".[54]

Following is a brief list of noteworthy Ithaca College alumni and faculty. For a more extensive list, see main entry List of Ithaca College alumni.

External links

  • Official website
  • Official athletics website
  • Illinois Digital Newspaper Collections: Ithacan (1926-2002)


  1. ^ End of fiscal year 2012-2013. "Ithaca College Facts in Brief 2013-2014" (PDF). Ithaca College. 
  2. ^ Carnegie Classifications: Ithaca College Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching.
  3. ^ Survey: The Top 20 Journalism Schools - TV Week. 2013.
  4. ^ "Hollywood Reporter Names Ithaca College One of the Top 25 Film Schools", 2013
  5. ^ "LinkedIn: Best Schools for Media Professionals", 2014
  6. ^ "U.S. News & World Report America's Best Colleges" Ranks Ithaca College in Top Ten - News Release - Ithaca College Office of Media Relations
  7. ^ [1], U.S. News & World Report Again Ranks Ithaca Among America’s ‘Best Colleges’, Maley, David. 2013.
  8. ^ [2], Princeton Review Names Ithaca College Among Nation's Best; Ranks Radio #1 and Theater #7, Maley, David. 2013.
  9. ^ "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places.  
  10. ^ Office of Institutional Research - Institutional Research - Ithaca College
  11. ^
  12. ^ Ithaca College International Programs
  13. ^ Maley, David. 2010.Interdisciplinary Programs at Ithaca College to be Restructured,
  14. ^ Ithaca College Degrees Conferred
  15. ^ The Ithacan Online
  16. ^ The Ithacan Online - Awards The Ithacan
  17. ^ ACP Contests Associated Collegiate Press
  18. ^ [3]
  19. ^ Happy Birthday, ICTV
  20. ^ [4]
  21. ^ [5]
  22. ^ VIC Radio Celebrates 25th 50 Hour Marathon, Gillian Smith, 2011.
  23. ^ [6]
  24. ^ [7]
  25. ^ "Music fraternities break stereotype" The Ithacan, November 11, 2004
  26. ^ December 07, 2000 - Stories swirl around about Mascots
  27. ^ [8]
  28. ^ Ithaca College Quarterly, 2003/No. 1 - Farewell to a Legendary Coach
  29. ^ "Media gear up for Cortaca Jug", The Ithacan Online, 8 November 2007
  30. ^ Ithaca Forever
  31. ^ [9]
  32. ^ "New School of Business Building An International First for Highest "Green" Standard". Ithaca College. Retrieved 2009-06-08. 
  33. ^ "Compost Facility to be Expanded". Ithaca College. Retrieved 2009-06-08. 
  34. ^ "Sustainability at Ithaca College". Ithaca College. Retrieved 2009-06-08. 
  35. ^ "Office Supply Collection and Reuse". Ithaca College. Retrieved 2009-06-08. 
  36. ^ "Sustainability Education for Orientation". Ithaca College. Retrieved 2009-06-08. 
  37. ^ Green Report Card 2009 - Ithaca College Sustainable Endowments Institute
  38. ^ "Ithaca College Sustainability". Retrieved 1 April 2013. 
  39. ^ a b Retrieved 1 April 2013. 
  40. ^ Retrieved 1 April 2013. 
  41. ^ Ithaca College Selects Thomas R. Rochon As Eighth President
  42. ^ Intercom - Important News to Share
  43. ^ W. Grant Egbert - Office of the President - Ithaca College
  44. ^ George C. Williams - Office of the President - Ithaca College
  45. ^ Leonard B. Job - Office of the President - Ithaca College
  46. ^ Howard I. Dillingham - Office of the President - Ithaca College
  47. ^ Ellis L. Phillips Jr. - Office of the President - Ithaca College
  48. ^ College’s fifth president dies The Ithacan, October 05, 2006
  49. ^ James J. Whalen - Office of the President - Ithaca College
  50. ^ Ithaca College Mourns Passing of President Emeritus James J. Whalen - News Release - Ithaca College Office of Media Relations
  51. ^ Peggy R. Williams - Office of the President - Ithaca College
  52. ^ Ithaca College President Peggy R. Williams Announces Plans to Retire in 2008 - News Release - Ithaca College Office of Media Relations
  53. ^ Ithaca College:Alumni, Parents, & Friends - Alumni Association - Alumni Clubs
  54. ^ Ithaca College: Alumni, Parents, & Friends - IC on the Road
  55. ^ [10]
  56. ^ [11]
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