Student Services

Student Services provides the support CIU students need to remain focused on pursuing a life serving Christ while achieving academic excellence.

Students and their parents, and all guests to our biblical university, can rest assured they’re safe and secure. Campus Security officers are engaged and alert, and patrol the grounds 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

CIU students also have access to quality care, walk-in appointments and affordable medications through Health Services on campus.

When you need quiet time to study, our state-of-the-art library has several study rooms available. With a student I.D., you can also check out a laptop to use while inside the library for up to four hours.

The Academic Success Center also provides special-needs amenities on an individualized basis, such as test adjustments and note-takers, so that all students can benefit fully from CIU’s commitment to academic success.

Prayer Days

CIU prayer days are held throughout the year. In this photo, CIU students are praying together during a World Christian Week event.One day a month, in September, October, November, February, March and April, classes and campus activities are suspended or shortened for CIU students, faculty and staff to have intimate time with God.   

During these special times of spiritual focus, we pray for our CIU family and intercede for others near and far. While some prayer days call for focused prayers or praying with a group, other days like World Christian Week or Christian Life Conference are also reserved for spiritual renewal and ministry. 

See the calendar or student handbook for all the scheduled prayer days at CIU. 

Small Group Formation

Small Groups

We encourage you to form small groups for fellowship, prayer and learning together while at CIU.

Formal and informal opportunities exist, including groups organized around the daily chapel services. Individual faculty members and other school leaders also host small group sessions. And students are encouraged to form their own.

Small groups are a great place to actively engage one another’s hearts for God, in turn enjoying the kind of friendships that come only from sharing this unique spiritual bond.

Students that come together in this way create the sense of connectivity that exists across the university as a whole. And they take it with them when they become one of our more than 17,000 alumni who stay connected around the world.

Local Church Connections

Spreading your wings spiritually is one of the greatest opportunities that God offers to new students away from home for the first time. Attending a local church is a great way to enhance that experience. 

In addition to the rich experience of chapel and other gatherings on campus, CIU encourages — indeed, expects — students to find a new church home while you’re a student here.  When you find a Bible teaching church, become involved, attend weekly worship service and Bible study or Sunday school. There are hundreds of churches in the Columbia area of various denominations, so the task of finding a church can seem daunting. We lighten the load a little by hosting a Church Fair in the student center in September. Representatives from churches throughout the city are on campus to share information about their church. 

Remember, the CIU educational philosophy is all about the holistic approach of engaging the “Head, Heart and Hands.” Joining a church community is a great way to live that experience.


Attending chapel is a requirement at CIU, and it’s a highlight. 

Inspiration, fellowship, and spiritual growth are just some of what our undergraduate and graduate students alike experience at these joyous gatherings. Faculty and staff also attend, helping to bring the CIU family closer. 

From a professional development standpoint, chapel is a great way to hear accomplished and new preachers share their message and skills. As a Christian, it’s a great way to reaffirm your faith and purpose four days a week. 

Here are some things you need to know: 

  • Services are held Monday through Thursday from 11 a.m. to 11:45 a.m.

  • Tuesday and Thursday chapels are for the entire university, while Monday and Wednesday chapels are typically in separate venues for segments of the CIU community.

  • All students are required to listen to every President's Chapel, even if attendance is excused. Chapel audio messages are available online.

  • Undergraduates enrolled for six or more credit hours are required to attend all chapels.

  • Undergraduates are permitted 10 chapel absences each semester.

  • Students not present in chapel must be off campus or in their rooms in the residence hall.

  • Studying on campus is not permitted during chapel.

  • If you work during a chapel hour, or live off campus and do not have classes in the morning, permanent chapel excuses are available.


Spiritual Life

We develop leaders to impact the nations with the message of Christ.  Our faith, purpose, & values permeate every aspect of the CIU experience and are the foundation of spiritual life at our Christian university. 

Chapel services are central to CIU’s educational program, designed to inspire and motivate fellowship and spiritual growth. The chapel schedule brings the entire university community together for worship. Small groups also connect students in a more meaningful way. 

The CIU values are reflected in every student as they engage communities locally and abroad.  

Students are encouraged —really, expected — to join a local church. Mission trips allow students to share God’s word with the world. 

Through various speaking engagements, CIU leadership lives out CIU’s mission and values by sharing their hearts and life’s work with the community beyond our campus. 

The spirit of Christ lives at CIU and in everyone who works, studies and resides here.

Outdoor Activities

Photo Credit: Brett Flashnick for Columbia Metropolitan Convention & Visitors Bureau

Outdoor Activities

Find time to enjoy the great outdoors during your college days because opportunities abound all around CIU.

Locally, hiking and camping, swimming, boating and other water sports are outdoor activity options. Our campus is not far from beautiful Lake Murray where you can go fishing or experience stand up paddle boarding.

Hikers should definitely explore South Carolina’s state trails. Of course, we have trails on campus, too, for when you want to take a hike from studying or just enjoy nature.  

Within 20 minutes of campus is Sesquicentennial State Park. There you rent a paddleboat, canoe or kayak and cruise the lake. Not far from downtown you can paddle Columbia’s three rivers. The Columbia area also is home to the only national park in the Palmetto State: Congaree National Park and its unspoiled river bottomlands beauty.

Within the Columbia city limits are paved trails lining the metropolitan riverways and Riverbanks Zoo & Gardens, considered one of the finest of its size in the world.

At the beginning of the fall semester, you’ll have a few weeks to cool off at Palmetto Falls Water Park at Fort Jackson. The park, which closes for the season in September, has two water slides, a splashdown pool and a lazy river.

And if that’s not enough, the Atlantic Ocean and Blue Ridge Mountains are only two to three hours away, depending on your destination. Discover South Carolina and its great outdoors.

Student Organizations

CIU Student Organizations

Student organizations are a great way to connect and stay connected at CIU. Make your voice heard while representing your classmates on the Student Senate. Meet up regularly with students with similar backgrounds. Express yourself in our literary and news publications. Or just help organize a party for everyone!

Here are some options offered at our CIU:

African American Student Association serves the CIU body and the Columbia community by building bridges among Christ’s children.

The Credo is CIU's peer-edited academic journal that publishes argument-driven papers on a range of topics, including literature, philosophy, hermeneutics and psychology. 

The Exchange is designed to provide students with a creative outlet for growth in the humanities, fine arts and performing arts.

The Finial is the annual yearbook prepared by students and their advisor.

Grad Life Council is the governing body for students in our seminary and graduate programs.

ISA (International Student Association) holds get-togethers and other special events to help students far from home get acquainted and stay involved.

Married Student Association is for all married members of the CIU student body. 

Mu Kappa serves and represents the needs of CIU's MK (Missionary Kid) and TCK (Third Culture Kid) students.

The Rambler is a school newspaper written by faculty, staff, and students for the free, confessional, and respectful exchange of all ideas.

Student Mission Connection plans chapels, regional prayer groups, and other activities designed to inform and involve the CIU community in making Christ known worldwide.

The Student Senate is the executive cabinet responsible for representing the students before the administration and communicating back to the students. The presidents of all student organizations serve on the Senate with the three student senate executive officers. 

The Student Union provides social and outreach activities for CIU students. Check the CIU calendar for upcoming events.










Residence Life Office

Residence Life

Not only does living on campus mean you have convenient access to our facilities like the library, computer labs, and cafeteria. It also means you get to meet new people and establish life-long friendships. You get to participate in fun residence hall activities and hang out with friends when you're not studying or doing homework.

Residence Life is available to help make your on-campus experience a positive experience. Their focus is building and supporting your on-campus experience. 

If you're under 23 years old, you are required to live in the residence halls.

Contact Residence Life

Memorial Hall, Suite 116

(803) 807-5485

Campus Café


The cafeteria is more than a dining hall at CIU. It truly is a fellowship hall for students and faculty to gather, break bread and enjoy each other’s company.

We also fuel your education, with meals available three times daily.

You’ll have a variety of food options because the cafeteria offers a salad bar, pizza and pasta station, and a hot bar. Before you leave, be sure to grab a cone of ice cream on the go.

New to the dining scene is the Ram Shack, which opened in 2014 in the Rossi Student Center and offers coffee, pizza, chicken wings, plenty of snacks and a few college essentials like school supplies as well as CIU gear. It’s a great place to study with friends and the see-and-be-seen hot spot after CIU Rams games.


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