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 — except Sunday lunch, of course.

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.

Summer Housing

So you’re going to summer school? CIU strives to offer affordable housing for students who want to take classes at CIU during the summer.

On-campus rates are $175 a week for a single and $110 a week for a double in one of our residence halls.

Check In & Check Out

Check in is 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. on Sunday. If you need to arrive earlier, please contact the summer housing coordinator below. Check out is after your last class through Saturday at 10 a.m. If you need to stay longer, there will be an additional $25 per night charge.


If you need linens during your stay, there will be an additional $10 fee. Please indicate your request for linens on the Summer Housing Request Form.


No meals are included in the summer housing fees. Summer meals are served according to demand. Meals will be served in the dining hall or in the Ram Shack in the Rossi Student Center.

Cafeteria meals are $3 to $6 depending on your selection, and should be paid for individually.

If you have special circumstances or questions, call Pioneer Food Services at (803) 807-5276.

Questions About Summer Housing?

Alex Markle

Summer Housing Coordinator

(803) 807-5485

Find Off-Campus Housing

Our Student Life Office maintains a list of off-campus housing options for CIU students. Area property owners and managers submit these properties to us, but it is important that you do your research before signing a contract or paying deposits. The off-campus housing list also includes room rental openings submitted by students who are looking for roommates.

Students often look forward to living off campus, but remember, undergraduate students must be 23 or older to take advantage of off-campus housing.  

Pine View Apartments

Pine View Apartments

Pine View Apartments are new, clean, quiet and a great place for students to live while at CIU.

A photo of Pine View Apartments on the campus of Columbia International University.You do have to be 23 or older to live at Pine View and if you’re under 23, you have to file an appeal through Residence Life for permission to reside here.

Pine View offers an on-campus housing option with an off-campus feel, and you’ll find a true sense of community with fellow Christians. The apartments have amenities that include club and game rooms inside, and a porch and grills outside with rocking chairs and a perfect view of the Rams soccer field.

Pine View is pet-free and offers one-, two- and three-bedroom apartments. Check out these floor plans and photos and picture yourself at Pine View.

Then review the rates and rules and complete the application form.

Undergraduate Housing Options

On-Campus Housing 

Our six traditional dorms provide fellowship and learning and support for our undergraduates. Those experiences are key to making the most of your time with us.

That’s why all unmarried undergraduate students under 23 are required to live on campus at our Christian bible college and seminary.

Undergraduates who are living with family within 50 miles must live on campus their first two semesters at CIU.

Housing rates change annually and are available online.

You may move off campus if you will turn 23 during that semester. Seniors and students 22 and older also may petition to live in the on-campus Pine View Apartments.

We also maintain an off-campus housing list for additional housing options in the Columbia area.


Housing and Dining (Residence Life)

We strive to provide a welcoming, comforting environment where our students can feel at home while attending CIU.

Boys residence hall at CIUStudents living on campus can expect to deepen their faith and form genuine friendships, through interaction with like-minded Christian students.

Six traditional residence halls offer fellowship and support for students. Unmarried students under 23 years old are required to live on campus to benefit fully from this experience.

Upperclassmen, graduate and seminary students, and students with families can apply to live in the Pine View Apartments. They’re beautiful and safe, with amenities such as the beautiful community center which has a game room, coffee bar, and grills and rocking chairs outside. Pine View offers affordable one-, two- and three-bedroom options.

To live in one of the residence halls, check the move-in dates and fill out the New Student Housing Survey. It’s a great place to make friends for life.

You can have a meal with your friends in the dining hall or the Ram Shack. The dining hall is open daily and sometimes you’ll see faculty and students dining together. That’s just how close-knit our community is at CIU. The Ram Shack, a great snack bar in the Rossi Student Center, is the place to be and be seen after CIU Rams games and other student events on campus. 

Study Abroad Programs

Study Abroad

The CIU TraveLearn program prepares you to share Christ with the world. Students who study abroad can expect to forge lasting friendships, gain global perspective and — best of all — deepen their ability to make an impact for Christ.

Mission Trips

Sharing and experiencing God’s love while immersed in another culture can be a life-changing experience. Individual credit-bearing courses are offered by some majors and are designed to teach you how to plan and conduct short-term mission trips.

Study Tours

These credit-bearing courses expose you to the sights, sounds and practices of other cultures. Examples include the Western Man Study Tour to Europe that includes cultural and historical instruction, and a study tour in Israel in conjunction with Jerusalem University College.

Best Semester

CIU students have the opportunity to study abroad in places like Israel.CIU partners with the Council for Christian Colleges & Universities to offer the Best Semester off-campus study programs. Students choosing Best Semester have traveled to Australia, Costa Rica, Uganda and more — returning with fresh knowledge and keen insights about the world around us.


Talk to your academic advisor to explore the possibilities of internships and study abroad programs.


Subscribe to Public