Columbia International University (CIU) kicked off its 100th-anniversary Wednesday morning with a flag parade through campus. Students, alumni and faculty took part in the parade by carrying flags representing the 160 nations where CIU alumni work and minister. 

The colorful international event started at the entrance to CIU at 10 a.m. with a bagpipe player leading the way. Flag holders followed behind, marching down International Blvd. Students from Ben Lippen School attended the flag ceremony, lining the streets to cheer on the festivities. The parade walked to the Shortess Chapel where they were met by singing from CIU’s Ambassador Choir. 

“This is important to us because global mission is really part of the DNA of CIU,” said Dean of Intercultural Studies Dr. Ed Smither. “We want to know Christ and make him known, so it’s really a celebration of who we are.”

CIU’s student body is attending the three-day conference along with CIU alumni and community members. Students will attend 30 workshops and hear from 5 keynote speakers. 

The conference will conclude with a concert performed by Grammy and Dove Award-winning singer and songwriter Laura Story, a 2003 CIU alumna. Visit to find out more about the 100-year celebrations.

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