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The College System – Calumet College

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Location: 235 Calumet College, Tel.: 416-736-5098
Web site:
Master: David Leyton-Brown, e-mail:

Calumet College was founded in 1970, sixth of the eight undergraduate colleges. It was initially housed in the Steacie Library and later at Atkinson. The unique character of Calumet College life and governance developed during the many years in Atkinson when Calumet served only commuter students. Master Eric Winter opened the college's first computer lab and introduced computer-related college courses. In 1991, through the leadership of Master Peggy Keall, Calumet College and Calumet Residence buildings were opened. Calumet is affiliated with the Faculty of Health and the Schulich School of Business.

Calumet aims to provide services, facilities and opportunities for students in all aspects of university life: academic, social, cultural and recreational. All members of the Calumet community, students, Fellows, alumni, alumnae and administration are encouraged to participate. The name Calumet is an aboriginal word meaning “peacepipe”, or strictly speaking the kind of rock from which a peacepipe is carved, which explains why Calumet is the only college at York which does not have a flag – instead it has a rock!  The name was chosen to recognize and respect Canada’s aboriginal heritage and culture, and Calumet College continues to give life to that intention through its partnership with an urban aboriginal organization, Anduhyaun Inc., and its affiliation with the Aboriginal Students Association at York.

Behind all of Calumet's activities there is a fundamental point of view, a theme, which celebrates the individual in community. It cherishes the differences among its students; it seeks to demonstrate the role of lively discussion and eventual consensus through mutual tolerance and understanding. Calumet College Council (CCC) and Calumet Residence Council (CRC) provides opportunities to get more involved in college life. CCC publishes the college paper, The Pipe (, its name suggestive of its role in the flow of information, and organizes social events and recreational sports. The college organizes workshops, symposiums, seminar series and social events. Calumet College’s focus has been around its mandate or theme: Enterprising Minds, which evokes its academic focus on psychology and business, and also its commitment to enhancing the intellectual and social experience of students. Several cocurricular events and activities enrich the student experience. Students can benefit from help provided by the SPAs (student peer advisers) in the areas of essays and assignments, stress management, time management, course selection and academic policies.

Recreational activities of the college are extensive. Calumet teams play in a wide range of intramural sports: hockey, broomball, water polo, softball and soccer to name a few. In some sports there are men's and women's teams, while others are coed. Usually there are separate teams for highly competitive and for recreational athletes. All students with a desire to play are encouraged to participate.

The Calumet Residence consists of 43 six-person coeducational suites. Suites normally have four single bedrooms and one double. Each suite also includes a lounge area, a kitchenette and two bathrooms. The suites are grouped into seven houses, each with a don: the entire residence is overseen by the residence life coordinator. Suite members are responsible for cleaning their own room; the cleaning of the common spaces, such as kitchens, lounges, entrances and stairwells, is shared by all suite members. Each room is equipped with high speed Ethernet drops allowing students to access the Internet, e-mail and all the online services York provides their students. There are two themed houses, or living-learning communities in the Calumet Residence: Current Topics in Psychology, in which first-year Psychology majors will all enrol in the same section of the introductory course in Psychology and have the opportunity to enhance their learning experience through study groups, exam preparation sessions, workshops, field trips and other activities; and Aboriginal House, in which Aboriginal students will have the opportunity to live in a culturally friendly and familiar environment, thus enhancing their transition to university and Toronto’s large urban experience.

Throughout the year, students organize a variety of social activities including dances, movie nights, gala dinners and other events. Much of the activity is formed around the interests of involved students.

The student government, Calumet College Council (CCC), is entrusted with the monies collected from the student body and the disbursement of those funds on activities and services for the benefit of all students. Elections for positions on CCC occur in March and shortly after that planning is initiated for the activities for the next school year.