Founded in 1833 with the goal to educate and inspire young women, Stephens College has evolved into an innovative, independent, and spirited institution with a women’s education that is truly unparalleled. Since Lucy Ann Wales stood before a small classroom of eager young women nearly 200 years ago, her mission to incite a tenacious sense of curiosity in students continues to inform everything on Stephens College’ campus. Stephens College is characterized by the kind of intellectual rigor, creative expression, and professional practice that enable students to thrive.
WOMEN’S COLLEGE ADVANTAGE
Research demonstrates the impressive benefits of attending an all-female college. On average, graduates from women’s colleges see more success than those who had attended co-ed colleges, taking on more leadership roles and excelling far into senior-level positions.
Such measurable differences are likely the result of the rigorous, empowering culture that schools like Stephens foster. Students are heard, valued, and challenged as they grow to be the best they can be.
“Stephens has done a great job of preparing us for the real world.” – Alexis Hudson
Students take advantage of hands-on, experiential learning from their first day of classes. From working with professional filmmakers at the annual Citizen Jane Film Festival as a Digital Filmmaking major to working at the Okoboji Summer Theater as a Theatre Management major, Stephens students have multiple opportunities to gain hands-on experience as undergraduates.
Stephens College understands how global learning opportunities can enrich one’s personal life and career opportunities. Students can make the world their classroom, dancing in Paris, developing marketing strategies in Seoul, and studying theatre in London. The opportunities for growth and exploration are endless!
What sets Stephens College apart from other schools is what’s known as the “Stephens difference.” Characterized by a blend of hands-on learning with a broad liberal arts education, the difference helps students identify their passions and grow into confident leaders.
“From the fashion terminology I learned and all the classes I have completed, I have been able to confidently accomplish all projects and tasks assigned to me. My first week, I was asked to pack a styling kit to send abroad to Amsterdam. I felt incredibly prepared and even contacted my teacher thanking her for her excellent advice.” – Emily Csengody
COMMON INTELLECTUAL EXPERIENCES
Every Stephens student is enrolled in a liberal arts-focused curriculum to bolster and enrich whatever they choose to major in. The well-rounded set of courses provide a broad foundation that fosters critical thinking, effective communication, and positive leadership.
Students have the opportunity to dive right into experiential learning from their first day. Whatever program she chooses, a Stephens College student is sure to learn and apply her skills toward her future career goals.
MARSHALL LECTURE SERIES
The Marshall Lecture Series is a Stephens tradition that promotes interest and awareness in international affairs. Knowledgeable, passionate thought-leaders give fascinating presentations about important political, humanitarian, and social issues facing different populations around the world.
In the fall of 2018, Stephens hosted “Bhutan: Development with Values,” a lecture exploring the Himalayan kingdom of Bhutan’s current state as a burgeoning, developing democracy. This is just one example of the unique insights brought to the Stephens campus. Attendees are sure to learn something new and open their minds to current events they otherwise may have never heard of.
“I feel Stephens is so personal, and that’s what makes the difference. The opportunities we get here and the people we get to meet are amazing.” – Livvy Runyon
The incredible comfort of the Stephens campus is an obvious reason as to why students embrace it as their home away from home. The beautiful grounds, tight-knit community, and a pet-friendly policy are all easy to fall in love with. To say that Stephens students thrive is an understatement; both on and off campus, there is always the opportunity to meet new people, have fun, and feel supported. The College also offers numerous official resources to help students stay healthy and happy.
Offered to full-time students, Stephens’ healthcare plan covers treatment for minor illness and injury at no cost. Students may also seek free and confidential counseling from licensed counselors at the Stephens College Counseling Center.
In addition to Stephens’ on-campus workout room, students are able to hop on a free shuttle to make a safe trip to the University of Missouri’s full rec complex. And thanks to a special partnership between the two schools, Stephens students are able to join the rec center at the same rate paid by Mizzou students.
Located in Columbia, Missouri, Stephens College is a part of an interconnected, larger community. There is so much nearby access to big-time college sports, film, music, art, recreation, and a thriving downtown shopping and restaurant scene. Students are encouraged to make the most of the Columbia, which is also home to beautiful parks and nature trails to explore.
Stephens College Stars thrive in the face of all the physical and mental challenges that teamwork demands of them. The Stars compete basketball, competitive dance, cross country, soccer, softball, and volleyball as affiliates of the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA). Stephens College is also a member of the American Midwest Conference.
“My advisor, Kate Gray, has been with me every step of the way even though she doesn’t personally have experience in the video game industry, she has been 100 percent supportive and one of my biggest advocates. She was the one who suggested I take a summer class on 3D modeling, which gave me skills I still use and is also where I met my game industry teacher and mentor, Jeff Byers.” – Fiona Kerr
CENTER FOR CAREER AND PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT
Stephens College is committed to the success of its students as they pursue a fulfilled life. The College’s Center for Career and Professional Development offer numerous resources, including:
- Career counseling, assessment, consultation, and exploration
- Online job database
- Workshops for soft-skill development
- Professional development
The Office of Institutional Advancement and Initiatives goes further to connect current and former students alike to productive work opportunities. Students and alumnae are involved in a network that opens the door to professional journeys beyond the classroom, fostering meaningful connections that benefit them in both their careers and personal lives.
Stephens students are encouraged to apply their classroom knowledge to real-world situations so they may be prepared to enter the workforce with ease and confidence. Most majors have the opportunity to gain hands-on professional experience, just a couple examples of which include:
- As apparel studies majors, students may intern at such companies as Cosmopolitan, Victoria’s Secret, and Escada.
- Integrated marketing communications majors gain hands-on experience with real clients and gain professional experience with Creative Ink, the student-run marketing firm.
- English students present their creative writing at public readings and Stephens College Scriptwriters Showcase.
- Digital filmmaking students graduate with a body of work that has been screened by a professional jury and at community events.
Stephens knows how important it is to have a body of work that represents a student’s talent. That is why most students graduate with a portfolio that has been reviewed by industry professionals before graduation.