Established in 1970, Indiana University-Purdue University Columbus (IUPUC) is located one hour south of Indianapolis. While Columbus has a population of only 45,000, it is ranked sixth in the nation for architectural innovation and design by the American Institute of Architects. Visitors will find more than 70 buildings and pieces of public art by internationally noted architects and artists, including I.M. Pei, Eliel Saarinen, Eero Saarinen, Richard Meier, Harry Weese, Dale Chihuly, and Henry Moore. Columbus is also home to the Indiana University Center for Art and Design, which opened in 2011.

Students and faculty

IUPUC primarily serves students who live in Bartholomew, Brown, Decatur, Jackson, Jefferson, Jennings, Johnson, Ripley, Shelby, and other counties in southern Indiana, although it has begun to attract a growing number students from outside the state of Indiana.

For the 2015-16 academic year, IUPUC served more than 1,700 undergraduate and graduate students. Many students complete their entire degree programs on the IUPUC campus. Other students complete their first year or two at IUPUC and then transfer to Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI) or Indiana University's Bloomington campus to complete degree programs that are not currently offered on the Columbus campus.

  • About 64 percent of IUPUC undergraduate students carry a full-time academic load. In comparison, 69 percent of its graduate students carry part-time academic loads. At 67 percent, the majority of its students are 24 years of age or younger, while 33 percent are 25 years of age or older. Of the graduate students at IUPUC, 78 percent are 25 or older. Female students comprise 66 percent of the undergraduate population and 69 percent of the graduate student population.
  • IUPUC has 66 full-time faculty members, 20 of whom are tenured and 13 of whom are tenure-track, in addition to over 100 part-time adjunct faculty. On average, these instructors teach 77 online and 306 on-campus courses in Columbus each fall and spring. A number of courses, however, are taught off-campus at learning centers in Seymour and Greensburg.
  • IUPUC works closely with its educational partner, Ivy Tech Community College of Columbus, to develop articulation agreements so that associate degree holders can apply their Ivy Tech credits toward an Indiana University or Purdue University bachelor’s degree.

The advantages of an IUPUC education include: (1) a welcoming campus that is geographically convenient to where southern Indiana students live and work; (2) the ability to earn affordable, globally recognized IU and PU degrees in Columbus; and (3) a cost-effective alternative to relocating and/or commuting to campuses in Bloomington, Indianapolis, or elsewhere.

Degree programs

Currently, IUPUC offers undergraduate degrees in business, communication studies, education, English, general studies, mechanical engineering, nursing, psychology, and sociology. IUPUC also offers two graduate degree programs: the Master of Business Administration and Master of Arts in Mental Health Counseling.

Many IUPUC students complete general education, elective, and some required courses and then transfer to IUPUI to complete degrees that are not offered in their entirety on the Columbus campus. These students pursue a variety of academic majors and degrees, including informatics, computer science, physical education, an array of health science disciplines, criminal justice, public and environmental affairs, and many other fields. IUPUC graduates also continue their educations and enroll in law, medicine, physical therapy, social work, and other graduate programs at IUPUI and other campuses.

Regional focus

IUPUC has a long-standing tradition of partnering with key K-12, business, and civic leaders to develop responsive educational programs that are aligned with regional needs. IUPUC received a substantial grant from Duke Energy in 2011, for example, to implement a science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) teaching and learning initiative for K-6 school districts throughout southern Indiana.

Because the region IUPUC serves has a strong niche in advanced automotive manufacturing, there is a growing need for professional engineers in the area workforce. To help meet that need, the Purdue University Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering (BSME) program was established in 2011. By providing this IUPUI program, IUPUC is the only university in the southern half of the state to offer a four-year degree in engineering. With support from two private funding sources, IUPUC now offers an endowed scholarship for female engineering students.

While many IUPUC students begin their studies in Columbus and transfer to IUPUI or other campuses to complete their degrees, data show that IUPUC graduates have deep roots in south central and southeastern areas of the state. The majority of IUPUC students have lived, worked, and raised families in southern Indiana for generations and continue to do so after they graduate.