University of Cincinnati

University of Cincinnati
Motto Juncta Juvant and Alta Petit (Latin)
Motto in English
"Strength in Unity" and "Seek the Highest"
Type   Public
  Research university
  NSA Cyber Operations Centers of Academic Excellence[1]
Established 1819
Endowment $1.196 billion [2]
President Beverly Davenport (interim)
Provost Peter E. Landgren (interim)[3]
Academic staff
6,655 (2016)[4]
Administrative staff
4,121 (2016)[4]
Students 44,338 (2016-17))[4]
Undergraduates 33,561 (2016-17)[4]
Postgraduates 10,777 (2016-17)[4]
Location Cincinnati, Ohio, U.S.
39°07′52″N 84°30′58″W / 39.131°N 84.516°W / 39.131; -84.516Coordinates: 39°07′52″N 84°30′58″W / 39.131°N 84.516°W / 39.131; -84.516[5]
Campus Urban
Main Campus: 137 acres (0.55 km2)
Uptown Campus (Main and Medical): 194 acres (0.79 km2)
All campuses: 473 acres (1.91 km²)
Student newspaper The News Record
Colors      Black
Athletics NCAA Division I, FBS
The American
Nickname Bearcats
Mascot The Bearcat
Affiliations University System of Ohio
GCU (formerly Urban 13)

The University of Cincinnati (commonly referred to as UC or Cincinnati) is a comprehensive public research university in Cincinnati, in the U.S. state of Ohio, and a part of the University System of Ohio.

Founded in 1819 as Cincinnati College, it is the oldest institution of higher education in Cincinnati and has an annual enrollment of over 44,000 students, making it the second largest[6] university in Ohio and one of the 50 largest universities in the United States.[7] In the 2010 survey by Times Higher Education (UK), the university was ranked in the top 100 universities in North America and as one of the top 200 in the world.[8] Beginning with the 2011 edition of the U.S. News and World Report "Best Colleges" rankings, the University of Cincinnati has been ranked as a Tier One university, ranking as the 140th National University and 71st Top Public University in the 2016 rankings. This includes being the number 3 ranked university in the nation in the "Up-and-Coming" National Universities section of the 2014 edition.[9] In 2011-2012 academic year the Leiden University ranking put the University of Cincinnati at the 93rd place globally and at the 63rd place in North America by the proportion of top-cited publications.[10] In 2014, U.S. News and World Report ranked UC in the top 200 of universities worldwide.[11]

The university garners roughly $400 million per annum in research funding,[12] ranking 22nd among public universities in the United States. Numerous programs across the university are nationally ranked, including: aerospace engineering, anthropology, architecture, classics, composition, conducting, cooperative education, criminal justice, design, environmental science, law, medicine, music, musical theater, neurology, nursing, opera, otolaryngology, paleontology, pediatrics, and pharmacy.

The school offers over 100 bachelor's degrees, over 300 degree-granting programs, and over 600 total programs of study, ranging from certificates to doctoral and first professional education. With an economic impact of over $3.5 billion per year, it is the largest single employer in Greater Cincinnati. After extensive renovations through the implementation of the 1989 Master Plan, the university has been recognized by campus planners and architects as one of the most distinguished campus settings in the world.[13][14]


Second home of the University of Cincinnati, 1874

Early history

In 1819, Cincinnati College and the Medical College of Ohio were founded in Cincinnati. Local benefactor Dr. Daniel Drake founded and funded the Medical College of Ohio. William Lytle of the Lytle family donated the land, funded the Cincinnati College and Law College, and served as its first president. The college survived only six years before financial difficulties forced it to close. In 1835, Daniel Drake reestablished the institution, which eventually joined with the Cincinnati Law School.

In 1858, Charles McMicken died of pneumonia and in his will he allocated most of his estate to the City of Cincinnati to found a university. The University of Cincinnati was chartered by the Ohio legislature in 1870[15] after delays by livestock and veal lobbyists angered by the liberal arts-centered curriculum and lack of agricultural and manufacturing emphasis. The university's board of rectors changed the institution's name to the University of Cincinnati.[16]


University of Cincinnati, Ohio, ca. 1904

By 1893, the University expanded beyond its primary location on Clifton Avenue and relocated to its present location in the Heights neighborhood. As the university expanded, the rectors merged the institution with Cincinnati Law School, establishing the University of Cincinnati College of Law. In 1896, the Ohio Medical College joined Miami Medical College to form the Ohio-Miami Medical Department of the University of Cincinnati in 1909. As political movements for temperance and suffrage grew, the university established Teacher's College in 1905 and a Graduate School in the College of Arts and Sciences in 1906.[17] The Queen City College of Pharmacy, acquired from Wilmington College (Ohio), became the present James L. Winkle College of Pharmacy.[18]

Public liberal arts university

In 1962, the Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music was acquired by the university. The Ohio legislature in Columbus declared the university a "municipally-sponsored, state-affiliated" institution in 1968.[19] During this time, the University of Cincinnati was the second oldest and second-largest municipal university in the United States.

By an act of the legislature, the University of Cincinnati became a state institution in 1977.[17]

Campus Master Plan and UC|21

In 1989, President Joseph A. Steger released a Master Plan for a stronger academy.[20] Over this time, the university invested nearly $2 billion in campus construction, renovation, and expansion ranging from the student union to a new recreation center to the medical school.

MainStreet looking past the Steger Student Life Center towards the student union and McMicken Hall

It included renovation and construction of multiple buildings, a campus forest, and a university promenade.

Upon her inauguration in 2005, President Nancy L. Zimpher developed the UC|21 plan, designed to redefine Cincinnati as a leading urban research university. In addition, it includes putting liberal arts education at the center, increasing research funding, and expanding involvement in the city.[21]


In 2009, Gregory H. Williams was named the 27th president of the University of Cincinnati. His presidency expanded the accreditation and property of the institution to regions throughout Ohio to compete with private and specialized state institutions, such as Ohio State University. His administration focused on maintaining the integrity and holdings of the university.[22] He focused on the academic master plan for the university, placing the academic programs of UC at the core of the strategic plan. The university invested in scholarships, funding for study abroad experiences, the university's advising program as it worked to reaffirm its incredible history and academy for the future. Williams resigned for personal reasons on Aug. 21, 2012. Beverly Davenport was appointed interim president of the university.


Uptown campus

The Uptown campus includes the West (main), Medical, and Victory Parkway campuses.

Entrance to main campus at UC

Regional campuses

Off-campus research facilities


The university has begun to institutionalize Gothic architecture, stone, and art-deco designs for its campus infrastructure.

Vontz Center for Molecular Studies, designed by Frank Gehry in conjunction with BHDP Architecture, is part of the medical campus.
The Engineering Research Center, designed by UC Alumnus Michael Graves, was designed to look like a 4-cylinder engine.

The university has had a strategic plan for the last decade for new architecture to be built by "signature architects." UC itself has an outstanding architecture and design program, and the efforts to have these famous architects design new campus buildings have encouraged students to attend the College of Design, Architecture, Art, and Planning (DAAP). In recent years, the university has received attention from architects and campus planners as one of the most beautiful in the world.[13][28]


In recent years the University of Cincinnati has made significant strides to include more green initiatives and encourage sustainability among students, faculty, and staff. In autumn of 2010, the University of Cincinnati maintained its position in green and sustainability initiatives by being named one of only 286 "Green Colleges" by The Princeton Review. The university has received this distinction each year since.[29] UC was the only public university in Ohio and the only university in the Southern Ohio region included on this list. Some of the programs that helped achieve this distinction include: a bike share program where UC students can rent bikes from the university, an expanded recycling program, improved and expanded campus transportation options, the addition of vehicle charging stations, fuel pellet use in place of coal, greatly decreased energy and water use throughout campus, and the addition of 6 Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certified buildings since 2005.[30] In 2007, former university president Nancy Zimpher signed the The American College & University Presidents' Climate Commitment, which confirms the university's dedication to reducing its environmental impact and take the necessary steps to become climate neutral.[31]

In 2010, UC opened up a privately funded athletic practice facility and Women's Lacrosse stadium named Sheakley Athletic Complex. As a continued effort to go green, a chilled water thermal energy storage tank was placed under the fields and at night water is chilled and then used to air-condition buildings on campus. The storage tank helps the university reach annual energy savings of about $1 million.[32] Also, in Autumn of 2010, the university began placing All Recycling containers throughout campus. This expansion of recycling efforts and receptacles provides a greater opportunity for students, staff, and visitors to participate in recycling a broader range of materials. In 2010, UC recycled just over 4,600 tons of material, which was a 23 percent increase over the previous year.[33] The student group, Environmental Students for Activism Volunteering and Education, or E-SAVE, launched the first environmental sustainability campus campaign in 2000-2002. In a meeting with then President Joe Stegler, students secured a commitment to create an presidents committee environmental sustainability.

Professional Practice Program

Joseph A. Steger Student Life Center

UC is the originator of the co-operative education (co-op) model.[34] The concept was invented at UC in 1906 by Herman Schneider, Dean of the College of Engineering at the time. The program generally consists of alternating semesters of coursework on campus and outside work at a host firm, giving students over one year of relevant work experience by the time they graduate. All programs in the College of Engineering and Applied Science, Architecture and all design programs in the College of Design, Architecture, Art, and Planning, and Information Technology in the College of Education, Criminal Justice, and Human Services, require co-operative education experience to graduate. Programs in the McMicken College of Arts and Sciences, Lindner College of Business, and other colleges offer optional co-op opportunities. For a number of years, this system was referred to as "The Cincinnati Plan." Ranked fourth in the U.S., UC's Professional Practice (Co-op) Program is the largest co-op program at a public institution in the United States with over 3,000 participating students at over 2,200 companies in 27 countries. Most recently in 2015, UC was one of 13 institutions cited for quality internships in a category called "A Focus On Student Success" by U.S. News & World Report.[35] The office of Professional Practice is housed in the Steger Student Life Center. The Division of Professional Practice is broken up into three units:

Cooperative Education Program

For over 100 years the Division lead has provided students with the opportunity to alternate full-time classroom time and work to provide them with a solid base of experience and professional development. This unit is the largest and modern successor of the original "Cincinnati Plan". This program also manages built-in, preestablished International Co-op (ICP) opportunities for select colleges.

Academic Internship Program

In 2010, the Division launched the Academic Internship Program, which provides access to opportunities for part-time internships to students. This includes the nationally competitive Singapore Experience brought to UC in 2012.

The Center for Cooperative Education Research and Innovation

This unit seeks to drive the development and implementation of cooperative education at UC as well as serve as an incubator for research and new thinking about approaches to experiential education. An example of this in action is the "Live Well Collaborative".[36] Formed in 2008, this is a collaborative effort between private companies such as Procter & Gamble, Boeing, General Mills, LG Electronics, and Kraft and the colleges of Business, DAAP, and Engineering and Applied Science at UC to help create living solutions for the U.S.'s aging population.

Academic profile

University rankings
ARWU[37] 72-98
Forbes[38] 375
U.S. News & World Report[39] 135
Washington Monthly[40] 219
ARWU[41] 201–300
QS[42] 551-600
Times[43] 201-250
U.S. News & World Report[44] 198

The University of Cincinnati currently offers over 350 programs of study which include 81 Associate, 114 Baccalaureate, 105 Master's, 66 Doctoral, and 3 First Professional (MD, JD, PharmD) degrees. The university is divided into 14 colleges and schools.


The Mines ParisTech : Professional Ranking World Universities ranked the University of Cincinnati 12th best university in the U.S. and 37th in the world according to the number of alumni holding CEO position in Fortune Global 500 companies. The university has dozens of highly ranked programs. The Princeton Review listed the university in its "Best 373 Colleges" each year since 2008[45] and the London (UK) Times ranked the University of Cincinnati 190th among all the universities in the world, 69th among United States universities and 28th among public U.S. universities in 2011. Additionally, the influential Academic Ranking of World Universities, published by Shanghai Jiaotong University, ranks the University of Cincinnati in the top 300 of more than 2,500 ranked worldwide and the top 100 of American universities.

In the 2017 U.S. News and World Report rankings, UC was listed as tied for the 198th best global university, tied for 135th ranked national university (U.S.), and tied for 64th best public university (U.S.).[46] The University of Cincinnati has also been listed among the 23 "National Universities" identified as "Up-and-Coming Schools" by U.S. News and World Report.[47] Administrators across the country were asked to nominate universities that recently made promising and innovative changes in the areas of academics, faculty, student life, campus, or facilities, according to the college guide. Out of the following UC programs and colleges that are currently nationally ranked, 34 place in the top 50.


Music and Arts Programs:

Science and Engineering Programs:

Medical and Human Service Programs:

  • Pediatrics, 3rd in the U.S.
  • Nursing-Anesthesia, 22nd in the U.S.
  • Nursing-Midwifery, 38th in the U.S.
  • Otolaryngology, 18th in the U.S.
  • AIDS Center, 26th in the U.S.
  • Neurology, 28th in the U.S.
  • Geriatrics, 29th in the U.S.
  • Pulmonary Disease, 32nd in the U.S.
  • Cancer Center, 33rd in the U.S.
  • Rheumatology, 35th in the U.S.
  • Speech and Language Pathology, 39th in the U.S.
  • Endocrinology, 39th in the U.S.
  • Cardiology, 43rd in the U.S.
  • Audiology, 26th in the U.S.

Business Programs:

  • Masters of Business Administration (Full-time), 63rd in the U.S.
  • Masters of Business Administration (Part-time), 82nd in the U.S.
  • Accounting (undergraduate), 10th in the U.S.
  • Master of Healthcare Administration, 3rd in the U.S.
  • Master of Science in Accounting, Top 25 in the U.S.
  • Master of Science in Finance, 7th in the U.S. (4th among public institutions)
  • Master of Science in Business Analytics, top 20 in the U.S.
  • Undergraduate program, 36th in the U.S. (public universities)

Colleges and schools

The university is broken up into the 14 colleges and schools listed below.

UC is also the home of the Institute for Policy Research, a multidisciplinary research organization which opened in 1971. The center performs a variety of surveys and polls on public opinion throughout Ohio, Kentucky, and Indiana, primarily through telephone surveys.

University Honors Program

Each year UC welcomes roughly 375 students to the University Honors Program and usually includes the top 5%-8% of students that apply to UC each year. The average credentials for an UC Honors students is an ACT score of 32 or higher, an SAT score of 1400 or higher (critical reading and math combined), a class rank in the top 10%, and an unweighted high school GPA of 3.8.[60] The program emphasizes experiential learning and engages students in curricular and co-curricular learning opportunities. The program enriches the UC experience of academically talented and motivated students through coursework and out-of-class experiences.[61] The Honors Program focuses on the four pillars of honors:

Curriculum & Seminars


Organizations and activities

International activities

The university has a large, diverse international student body, with approximately 3,000 students drawn from over 110 countries. The largest number of foreign students are from India and China with a significant number from France as well. Most international students study at the graduate level, although the university is now aggressively recruiting more talented students into undergraduate fields. To this end, UC is now creating a network of official representatives to assist interested students throughout the world.

A number of new international activities are positioning UC as a leading international innovator among U.S. universities. UC is the first American university to benchmark its international student services, using an instrument known as the International Student Barometer (ISB). In the Fall 2006 survey, UC benchmarked with the highest overall international student satisfaction score among the 40 participating institutions. UC is also among the first universities to pilot the new Standards of Good Practice for Education Abroad, created by the Forum on education abroad.[64]

International collaboration

UC recently initiated a strategy of "comprehensive engagement" with key foreign institutions. The first of these with which a formal agreement was signed was Shandong University, of Jinan, China. In addition to developing a range of activities across their many colleges, the two universities have agreed to create a Joint Center for Urban Research, with offices on both campuses. UC's new COSMIC database (Cincinnati Online System for Managing International Collaboration) provides a view of its international relationships.[65]

Study and co-op abroad

UC has offered the opportunity to study or work abroad in over 80 countries since 2003.[66] In 2013 nearly 1,400 undergraduate students studied abroad. There are four types of study abroad opportunities at UC:

The university offers additional opportunities such as international co-op, internships, research, and service learning abroad and can last anywhere from a week over spring break to a full academic year spent abroad. UC International is the office that oversees these programs and offers several scholarships and grants to help fund international experience as well. The programs offered can be program or college specific and apply directly towards degree completion, or used to satisfy area studies or minors.[67]


The University of Cincinnati has a long history of both undergraduate and graduate research and has set the stage for fostering world-changing innovation, scholarship and entrepreneurship. In 2013, UC was named the best "overall" university for economic engagement by the Association of Public and Land Grant Universities’ Commission on Innovation, Competitiveness, and Economic Prosperity and in 2010, UC received the most research funding in the history of the university at more than $443 million, a 17% percent increase over 2009. The same year, corporate research topped $15.2 million, an increase of 21% over the previous year. The university is classified by The Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Education as a "Research 1" university, since renamed "RU/VH: Research Universities (very high research activity)". Recently, The Center at Arizona State University placed the University of Cincinnati as a "Public University Ranking in the Top 20 public research universities in the United States[68] and The Chronicle of Higher Education named UC as a "Research Heavyweight".[69]

Research at the University of Cincinnati is not just limited to labs. Students have the opportunity to take part in opportunities from medical research, to engineering labs, to creating sustainable technologies and designing buildings. UC has dozens of research centers across all 14 colleges and offers research opportunities in more than 250 programs while faculty and students are awarded an average of 11 patents each year. As recently as April 2010, the University of Cincinnati has been mentioned as a possible candidate for the prestigious Association of American Universities and has secured more research funding in recent years than several current members.[70]

One of many notable examples is the archaeological work in Cyprus (at Maroni-Vournes—involving British Museum) by a team from the university, has been going on for several years, including 2010.[71]

Research Growth:

  • 2012 - $404,699,921
  • 2011 - $418,282,277
  • 2010 - $443,034,127
  • 2009 - $377,865,075
  • 2008 - $353,029,246
  • 2007 - $333,502,261
  • 2006 - $332,655,266
  • 2005 - $332,298,402
  • 2004 - $319,624,151
  • 2003 - $310,483,057

Invention Disclosures:

  • 2012 - 123
  • 2011 - 106
  • 2010 - 82
  • 2009 - 113
  • 2008 - 115

Patent Applications:

  • 2012 - 75
  • 2011 - 70
  • 2010 - 82
  • 2009 - 64
  • 2008 - 43

Start-up Activity:

  • 2012 - 6
  • 2011 - 3
  • 2010 - 7
  • 2009 - 3
  • 2008 - 2

Patents Issued:

  • 2012 - 20
  • 2011 - 11
  • 2010 - 16
  • 2009 - 7
  • 2008 - 8

Royalty Income:

  • 2012 - $541,510
  • 2011 - $515,281
  • 2010 - $480,602
  • 2009 - $844,470
  • 2008 - $582,697

Ohio Centers of Excellence

University of Cincinnati Solar Decathlon House 2007

The Ohio Centers of Excellence[72] were designed to recognize the extensive research at universities in Ohio and encourage the development of new technologies and techniques to help retain and create Ohio jobs. Most recently the College-Conservatory of Music was honored for its excellence in Cultural & Societal Transformation and is the only performing arts program in Ohio to earn the designation:

Off-campus research facilities


There have been several discoveries, inventions, accomplishments, and "firsts" that have taken place at the University of Cincinnati.


Walter C. Langsam library, the main library at UC.

The University of Cincinnati has 14 libraries, which are housed in 11 different facilities. This also includes the Digital Projects Department. The university library system has holdings of over 4 million volumes and 70,000 periodicals. The average circulation is around 451,815 items and 116,532 reference transactions. The University of Cincinnati is a member of the Association of Research Libraries. This is a collection of 123 libraries at research-intensive institutions in the U.S. and Canada. UC is also part of OhioLINK which gives students access to libraries across 16 public universities, 23 community/technical colleges, and 49 private colleges with tens of millions of volumes at their fingertips.


Main article: Cincinnati Bearcats

The university competes in 19 Division I (NCAA) sports and its athletics teams are known as the "Bearcats". Since July 1, 2013, they have been members of the American Athletic Conference (The American). They were previously members of the Big East Conference, Conference USA (of which they were a founding member), the Great Midwest Conference, the Metro Conference, and the Mid-American Conference, among others.

The university's most well-known rivalries are with the Miami University (compete annually in the oldest non-conference football rivalry in the U.S., the Battle for the Victory Bell), the University of Louisville, the University of Pittsburgh, and Xavier University. The Bearcats and Musketeers meet annually in one of the most fierce rivalries in college basketball, the Crosstown Shootout. UC is known for its rich tradition in basketball, but have enjoyed recent sustained success in football. It is the fifth-oldest program in college football, having started collegiate play in 1885 and participated in the first collegiate football game in the State of Ohio. Besides its varsity sports, the university also has a diverse number of intercollegiate club sports teams and has recently passed legislation to distinguish some clubs as Club Varsity.[81] Some include the Wrestling club and the club rowing team, which produced 2004 Olympian Kelly Salchow.

National championships

Hall of Famer Sandy Koufax

The university has four individual and six team championships. The Bearcats won the NCAA Men's Division I Basketball Championship in 1961 and 1962, both times against Ohio State. Charles Keating won the 1946 200-meter butterfly national title for UC as a member of the men's swimming team and most recently, Josh Schneider[82] did the same in the 50-yard (46 m) freestyle in 2010. In women's diving, Pat Evans (3 m dive – 1989) and Becky Ruehl (10 m dive – 1996) have brought home titles for the Bearcats. The UC Dance Team has won 4 National Championships from 2004 through 2006 and again in 2009. They are the first team in UC history to ever capture three consecutive national titles. They remain one of the top dance programs in the country and are the winningest team in University of Cincinnati history. In 2009 the dance team was also selected to represent the United States of America in the first ever world dance championships where they won the gold medal in all three dance categories.[83]

Notable athletics alumni include: Baseball Hall of Famers Sandy Koufax and Miller Huggins; Basketball Hall of Famers Oscar Robertson and Jack Twyman; New York Yankees first baseman Kevin Youkilis; FC Cincinnati forward Omar Cummings; New York Knicks forward Kenyon Martin; Olympic gold medalist Mary Wineberg; and tennis great Tony Trabert.

Student athletes

In May 2006, former Athletic Director (AD) Thomas introduced his vision for Bearcats Athletics, titled CATAPULT. Thomas's five-year vision for UC's 19-sport intercollegiate program was launched six months after his hiring as AD. The plan focuses on three main initiatives: winning championships, high-level academic achievement, and a comprehensive integration with the greater Cincinnati community. This action initiative tracks UC's 19 teams towards conference Championships in every sport within the next five years, encourages continued leadership by UC student-athletes in academics, and stresses community engagement. CATAPULT —an acronym for Championships, Academics, and Together— sets the goal that in the next five years UC will win a conference championship in every sport; UC's student-athletes will lead the general student body in graduation rate and grade point average; and UC's student-athletes and coaches will engage the Cincinnati community in service. During the 2006 fall quarter, the first under the CATAPULT plan, UC's sports teams made major improvements in academics, achieving an overall grade point average (GPA) of 2.938. Additionally, 11 of the 17 squads posted team GPAs higher than the general UC student body GPA of 2.965.

In 2006, four of the six UC fall sports teams improved their finish in the final Big East conference standings over that of Fall 2005. The Bearcat teams collectively posted an improvement of three places. UC's men's soccer team became the first Bearcat squad to claim a BIG East title, winning the Red Division of the league's regular season race. Most recently, football won the Big East Championship in 2008, 2009, and 2011 and women's volleyball won the Big East regular season title in 2010 and the Big East tournament in 2011.

In December 2007 ESPN stated that if academics and athletics achievement were factored in, that Cincinnati team would be playing in the BCS Championship game. UC finished the season with a 10–3 record and a #17 national ranking.

Athletic facilities

All of the athletic facilities (with the exception of Fifth Third Arena and Marge Schott Stadium) are open 24/7 for student use.[84]

Student life

Center for First Year Experience

Mick and Mack, Medici lions at McMicken Hall

The Center for First-Year Experience provides leadership for each student's first-year experience and related academic program. The center serves as a resource for all the university’s undergraduate colleges and programs. This collaboration between UC colleges, academic programs, and student groups allow freshman to continue the transition from high school to college. The program is designed to help freshmen and their faculty to develop relationships that will continue and grow throughout their time at the University of Cincinnati.[85]

Learning communities

Many students at the University of Cincinnati have the opportunity to participate in learning communities. These are diverse groups of students and faculty in which 20–25 students have at least two classes together throughout their first year on campus. Students have the opportunity to join these based on their major or area of study. There are nearly 120 learning communities to choose from. They are offered in the following colleges: College of Allied Health Sciences, College of Business, College of Education, Criminal Justice, and Human Services, College of Engineering & Applied Sciences, College of Nursing, and the McMicken College of Arts & Sciences. A few majors require freshmen to be in these learning communities. Many of these groups have specialized courses taught by their academic advisor.[86]

Students and Cincinnati residents gather for the American Cancer Society's Relay For Life event on UC's campus, one of the top Relay For Life events in the nation.

Transition and Access Program

The Transition and Access Program, which does not lead to a degree, allows certain disabled adults to take classes, interact with other students, and intern at companies. After four years, participants receive a certificate which can be used to get a job.[87]

Student Organizations

Student Activities & Leadership Development (SALD)[88] oversees over 550 registered student organizations ranging from student government to religious organizations to spirit groups. Housed in the Steger Student Life Center, the divisions overseeing these groups include Club Sports Board, Diversity Education, Greek Life, Leadership Development, Programming, RAPP, and Student Government. Additionally, there are several other Student Life Offices on campus, such as the African American Cultural & Resource Center, Bearcat Bands (the largest and oldest student group at UC), Early Learning Center, Ethnic Programs & Services, University Judicial Affairs, Resident Education & Development, Wellness Center, and the Women's Center.

Service learning

The university describes service learning as reflective, educational experiences blended with service activities that foster a deeper understanding of course content and an enhanced sense of civic responsibility. Each year students at the University of Cincinnati log tens of thousands of hours of community service on campus and in the surrounding city and communities through courses and other opportunities. The University of Cincinnati was one of the first universities in the country to be classified by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching as a Community Engagement focused university and was one of only 35 research universities on this list.[89] In the 2013–2014 academic year, UC offered nearly 100 courses with a service learning component with over 3,000 students enrolled in them.

Among the hundreds of events that take place annually, two of the largest and most successful student-run community service events are the 18-hour Relay for Life and the 24-hour Cincinnati Dance Marathon. In support of the American Cancer Society’s education, advocacy and research programs, UC’s Relay for Life raised more than $126,000 in 2010 when over 1,800 students and over 170 teams participated by collecting pledges and walking the relay route through McMicken Commons on main campus. The event was recognized as one of the top 10 collegiate Relay for Life events in the nation and the largest Relay for Life in their region, which includes Ohio and Pennsylvania.[90] Although the Cincinnati Dance Marathon at UC has only been taking place in the Campus Recreation Center for a few years, in 2010 500 students danced all night to raise $13,500 in donations and then in 2011 raised nearly $24,000 for Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center.[91]

Campus Green, which is green and activity space for students at UC. To the left is the Lindner College of Business and to the right are residence halls.

Fraternity and sorority life

Fraternities and sororities have been a part of the university since 1840. There are over 2,500 students participating in fraternities and sororities, which represents approximately 11% of the undergraduate population (Uptown Campus). 52 chapters have called UC home over the years, and currently includes 39 social fraternities and sororities: 21 Interfraternity Council fraternities, 9 Panhellenic Council sororities, 7 National Pan-Hellenic Council (three fraternities and four sororities), and two non-affiliated (Delta Phi Lambda and Phi Sigma Rho[92]) organizations.

Student media

There are several media outlets for university students. The student newspaper is The News Record and has been in production for more than 130 years, taking its current name in 1936.[93] It is an independent, student run newspaper and not attached to any academic program and therefore any student, regardless of program, is able to apply and work for the newspaper. There is a student-run radio station, named Bearcast that is housed in the College-Conservatory of Music on campus. The programming streams online as opposed to a traditional radio station and, like the News Record, is open to any student attending the university. There is also a television station called UCast.[94]

Film Festival

The 48-hour film festival is held each year for the general public to attend. Notable speakers and filmmakers are known to kick off the event including Fraser Kershaw, as well as guest speakers and artists from Kenyatta University in Nairobi, Kenya. Actors, directors, editors, and composers are showcased at the MainStreet Cinema for students' and professionals.[95][96]


UC Housing & Food Services[97] runs three award winning dining centers: Center Court, MarketPointe, and Stadium View Café. Meal plans are purchased at the beginning of each year and first year students living in residence halls are required to purchase one. Upper classmen are offered the option to opt-out of a meal plan. There are also independent meal plans that students not living in residence halls may purchase. There is also a food court in the Tangeman University Center (student union) and many other restaurants and cafes are also available on campus.

UC is regularly recognized for excellent dining centers and restaurants and they have been awarded multiple awards since 2005. CenterCourt has received the greatest acclaims for UC dining, winning for best concept in 2007 and Grand Prize in 2006 National Association of College and University Food Services' awards. CenterCourt and Market Pointe Dining Program received the honorable mention award in 2009 and Market Pointe@Siddal received an honorable mention in 2008 and a Silver Award in 2005. In 2011, UC's Mick and Mack's Contemporary Café, one of the full service restaurants on campus, received the bronze award with Brown University's Blue room. UC placed third in the category of 'Retail sales – Single concept'.[98]


Campus Recreation Center Housing, designed by Thom Mayne, opened in 2006.

6,500 students live on campus in ten residence halls that offer both traditional and suite style options. Students also have the option to live in themed housing, which include (among others) honors, business, STEM, etc. specific floors. Additionally, in fall of 2012, Campus Recreation Center Housing (CRC) was named on The Fiscal Times "10 Public Colleges with Insanely Luxurious Dorms" list.[99] Nearly 80% of Uptown Campus incoming freshman students live on campus their first year.[100]

In recent years, record freshman classes and increased interest by upperclass students has led to higher demand than supply for on-campus residence halls. To meet this demand, UC Housing and Food Services has added residence halls (Morgens Hall in 2013) and purchased block leases at University Park Apartments, Campus Park Apartments (formerly Sterling Manor), University Edge Apartments, and Stetson Square Apartments near campus.[100] This has pushed the "on-campus" housing student population higher and the university announced that Scioto Hall will undergo a renovation and open in fall 2016 in addition to plans for a new residence hall and dining center where Sawyer Hall once stood.

UC Housing & Food Services[101] manages nine undergraduate residence halls:

The University also offers limited housing to graduate students. Bellevue Gardens is an apartment community owned and operated by the University. It is located close to the Academic Health Center (AHC) and medical campus. Two off-campus university-affiliated (but not university-managed) housing options were introduced in 2005; Stratford Heights and University Park Apartments. All leases in the Stratford Heights housing area have been terminated, and control of the housing complex reverted to University control as a residence hall in Summer 2009.

Notable alumni and faculty members


In 2010 Kelly Brinson died after being tased by University of Cincinnati police officers at the university's hospital.[103]

On July 19, 2015 Sam DuBose was shot and killed by University Police Officer Raymond Tensing.[104] DuBose had been stopped near the intersection of Vine and Thill Street for driving without a front license plate.[104] Body camera footage plainly contradicted Officer Tensing's account of the incident.[104] On July 29 Officer Tensing was indicted for murder.[104] Hamilton County Prosecutor Joe Deters said that this shooting was "the most asinine act I've ever seen a police officer make." [105]


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