The College's interdisciplinary Certificate in Chicago Studies recognizes the meaningful integration of academic inquiry with positive, impactful engagement in Chicago. The certificate is available to students in any field of study; the specific fulfillment of its requirements (below) is up to the individual student, with close advising and support from Chicago Studies' team. Students may choose to focus their certificate on discipline-based, academic study of the city; pre-professional experience with Chicago institutions; deep engagement with a particular community; or social change.
For a downloadable overview of the Certificate program and its requirements, click here.
Three or more related, preparatory “experiments in Chicago-ing” that prototype key elements of the proposed certificate project. Students may fulfill this requirement in relevant on-campus programming or meaningful, competency-building experiences off-campus.
Three or more Chicago-focused classes that relate to a student's overall certificate project. The Chicago Studies Quarter (three inter-related classes) automatically fulfills this requirement, otherwise students must petition for a proposed sequence's approval.
200 or more hours of direct engagement with one or more Chicago organizations or communities. These may be completed intensively (e.g. a full-time summer internship) or over a longer period of time (e.g. by regular volunteerism or activism).
A project that responds to a community-defined priority, answers a Chicago-focused question, or benefits a specific Chicago community. The capstone must integrate students’ learning from their various experiences studying and engaging with the city.
Capstone: Analysis of Chicago's reparations package on behalf of Jon Burge torture survivors' advocacy campaign
Capstone: Documentary films promoting awareness of the missions and programs of two Chicago-area nonprofits
Capstone: comprehensive CPS school closings dataset to resource civic journalism and advocacy
Capstone: Historical analysis of role of Chicago Transit Authority in reinforcing neighborhood-level segregation
Capstone: Public health gaps analysis of Chicago Public Schools' asthma prevention programming and services
Capstone: Study of utilization patterns of closed CPS school facilities with recommendations for future redevelopment strategies