COLLEGE OF CHARLESTON (visited 4/5/14)
COC was founded in 1770, making it the 13th oldest university in the country. Much of the campus reflects this feel with central campus dominated by historic buildings and moss covered trees. Although started as a private college, it’s now public school with about 10,050 undergraduates; however, they draw a significant number of their students (about 38%) from outside of SC. Housing is guaranteed for freshmen, but most students move off campus after that. There are several historic houses that upperclassmen live in, and “commuting” is usually within walking distance. Parking is available but expensive, so many students don’t bring cars. Downtown is within easy walking distance, including a lot of restaurants and stores.
Unique or strong programs include: Arts Management (looking at the business side such as running galleries, music, etc), Historic Preservation and Community Planning (lots of experiences in the city, and they have a Joint degree in Preservation with Clemson); Astrophysics; Computing in the Arts; Computer Science (very popular – they’re putting up a new building, and students work for Google and Boeing, both of which have big offices in town); specializations within Business Admin (the most popular major in terms of enrollment) including Commercial Real Estate, Global Logistics and Transportation; Hospitality and Tourism Management (the flagship program); and Leadership, Change, and Social Responsibility; International Business (students must minor in a language and must study abroad); and Education (they have the highest Praxis II scores in the state). Foreign languages they offer (to at least the Intermediate level) include: Ancient Greek, Arabic, Chinese, Hebrew, Hindi, Japanese, and Russian in addition to the more popular offerings.
Students admitted to the Honors College almost always come in as freshmen so they can start and continue through with their cohort. There are also specific classes they need to take through the Honors College. If they think they want to apply once they’re on campus, they should talk to advisors to make sure that they don’t enroll in classes that they’ll have to repeat. Classes are smaller, averaging about 14 students per class. Honors students will complete an independent study in one semester and a bachelor’s paper which normally takes two semesters to complete. There is new Honors-specific housing available consisting of two floors of coed suites.
They’re a DI school playing in the Colonial Conference, and basketball is the big spectator sport. Unusual sports include sailing (both men and women) and sand volleyball (women).