Jacob H. Carruthers Center for Inner City Studies

Akua Cason, Interim Director

Northeastern Illinois University’s Jacob H. Carruthers Center for Inner City Studies demonstrates the University’s urban tradition of education, research and service.

The Carruthers Center for Inner City Studies (CCICS) is located at 700 East Oakwood Boulevard in the heart of Chicago. CCICS was established by Northeastern Illinois University in 1966 as an outgrowth of its concern for and commitment to Chicago’s inner city communities. Since its inception, CCICS has focused on the analysis of institutions, systems and people with a direct impact on the quality of life in the inner cities of the U.S. and elsewhere in the world by creating programmatic and research initiatives.

The curricular thrust of the undergraduate and graduate programs of CCICS is to prepare those who work and live in the inner city to understand and act upon the expressed interests of residents of the inner city and to participate fully in the richness of the African and African-American cultures. Since the beginning, the approach has been interdisciplinary with effective curricula and a philosophy which re-examines every research issue, problem, assumption and question from an African-centered perspective, rather than from the traditional, European-centered viewpoint. This discipline encompasses a research methodology and world-view which achieve different results when applied to present day inner city populations, and leads to new relationships between human and natural resources in the Chicago metropolitan area and world-wide.

CCICS offers courses from the College of Arts and Sciences that fulfill the General Education Program Requirements. In addition, students can pursue a BACHELOR’S OR MASTER’S DEGREE IN URBAN COMMUNITY STUDIES. For course listings and descriptions, please refer to the GOODWIN COLLEGE OF EDUCATION under Urban Community Studies.

The CCICS branch of the Ronald Williams Library houses an extensive resource center on African American issues. In addition, it contains master theses of CCICS graduates documenting a multitude of African-Centered research and studies compiled on politics, education, and history of the culture of African-Americans since the late 1960s through 1990.

CCICS has a computer lab that provides online access to the main campus, the Internet, and libraries around the world. A live, interactive Distance Education classroom connects CCICS with the main campus of Northeastern. The use of distance education provides students on both campuses with many educational opportunities.

Academic counseling, financial aid counseling, and registration assistance are available to CCICS students. The Summer Bridge Program is designed to enhance the skills of entering freshmen and returning adults. The program focuses intently on students’ study habits, writing skills and preparedness for successful completion of their selected degree program.

Seminars are offered to schools, community organizations, businesses and social services agencies to facilitate and improve communications and understanding of the African-American culture. Seminars are scheduled by request. CCICS makes available its facilities to not-for-profit organizations that promote the growth and development of the individual, community and services. CCICS also provides other educational services in cooperation with community institutions and organizations.