Columbia International College

Columbia International College
1003 Main Street West
Hamilton, Ontario, L8S 4P3
Coordinates 43°15′29″N 79°54′22″W / 43.258°N 79.906°W / 43.258; -79.906Coordinates: 43°15′29″N 79°54′22″W / 43.258°N 79.906°W / 43.258; -79.906
School type Independent School, Co-educational School, University-Preparatory School, Day/Boarding School
Motto Seek, Strive, Succeed
Founded 1978
Principal Ron Rambarran[1]
Grades 7-12,University Preparatory

Columbia International College is a private boarding preparatory school in the Ainslie Wood neighbourhood of Hamilton, Ontario, Canada. As of 2014, the school has students from over 70 countries.[2]

Columbia is a member of the Independent School Associations of Ontario (ISAO). The College is also registered with the Ministry of Education (Ontario)


Columbia's 1st campus at Mohawk Road West
Ainsliewood campus at 1003 Main Street West
Maple campus at 1033 Main Street West

Founded in Hamilton, Ontario, in 1978, Columbia International College began as a six-room university preparatory and ESL school on Mohawk Road West. It was known at the time as Columbia Secondary School of Canada. The school quickly outgrew this location, prompting a move to 430 East 25th Street in 1981 and another move to 1029 Main Street West in 1985; by this time, Columbia had a student population of 300. Ten years later, in 1991, Columbia Secondary School officially changed its name to Columbia International College.

The 1990s saw growth in Columbia’s facilities, academic programs and student population. The school’s climb in enrollment numbers resulted in a relocation to the Ainsliewood Campus in 2000. The school’s current home is an 11,200 square metre facility located at 1003 Main Street West.


Columbia has six semesters: January, March, June, July, August and October; and year-round admission.[3]

Testing services offered

Columbia is an Official Test Centre for:


Columbia International College educates students from Grade 7 through Grade 12. The school’s academic programs include:

  • University Transfer (AP)
  • Pre-University
  • High School (Grades 9 – 12)
  • Junior Middle School (Grades 7 & 8)
  • TOEFL Preparation
  • SAT Preparation
  • ESL (English as a Second Language)
  • ESL Summer Camp

Summer camp

Columbia’s ESL Summer began in 1995 and is offered to children aged 9–19.

University partners

Columbia International College has partnerships with universities around the world, including;


Columbia International College currently has five single-gender residence buildings; three for males and two for females.

Extracurricular activities

Columbia’s Student Development Office assists students with their after-school schedules and events on campus and within residence. They offer clubs and activities based on Leadership, Arts, Community Service and Athletics.

Bark Lake Leadership Center

Bark Lake is Columbia’s private Leadership and Outdoor Education Center. It is a 700-acre facility located in Haliburton County, Ontario.

Throughout the year, frequent trips are made to Bark Lake for students to complete leadership training.[9]



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