- Director's Welcome
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- About Columbia
With its wealth of activities, excellent public and private schools, and college atmosphere, Columbia is an attractive location to spend the next four years of residency. In fact, many of our program's graduates decide to remain in the area.
Columbia has been consistently ranked in Money Magazine's Top 100 Small Cities in America surveys with a current population of 108,500 permanent residents. Columbia's centralized location in Missouri provides easy access to neighboring areas, including the larger cities of St. Louis and Kansas City, as well as numerous recreational areas in the state including the Lake of the Ozarks.
Columbia is home to the University of Missouri, a well-respected public university and one of the oldest colleges west of the Mississippi River. The university hosts a variety of cultural events including the University Concert Series, Broadway musicals, and popular acts such as the Police, Sheryl Crow, and Brad Paisley.
Mizzou is part of the SEC athletic conference and features sporting events year-round. Our football, basketball, volleyball, baseball, and wrestling teams have all enjoyed recent success and the game day atmosphere is something you have to experience for yourself!
A state-of-the-art recreation center, Mizzou Rec, was built in 2005 and boasts several multi-use gyms, racquetball, 50m pools, cardio / weight rooms, and classes in everything from martial arts to night spinning. These services are available to staff of the hospital for a monthly membership fee.
Downtown Columbia, also known as the District, is a unique and vibrant area filled with boutiques, cafes, one-of-a-kind theatres, and a multitude of restaurants. It plays host to festivals and concerts throughout the year. Individuals with adventurous tastes will enjoy the variety of dining options including Asian (Korean, Thai, Vietnamese, Chinese, Japanese), Indian, Italian, Spanish, Tex-Mex, and traditional fare such as BBQ.
One of the largest shopping malls in the mid-Missouri is located in Columbia. Columbia Mall has 125 stores including Macy's, Dillard's, and a nearby Best Buy.
Outdoor enthusiasts will have many options in this 4-season city. There are several parks within the city and just outside of town where hiking, biking, swimming, and picnicking are available. Katy Trail, a 225 mile bicycle trail through Missouri, is linked to Columbia via the MKT spur that runs through town. Cross-country skiing is available in the winter months. Golfers have the option of several courses in the city and in nearby communities. Just outside the city limits, Rock Bridge State Park provides acres of beautiful countryside and a natural bridge formation this is common to the geology in this area.
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