Concordia University Chicago is an American private, Lutheran liberal arts university located in the village of River Forest, Illinois, 10 miles west of Chicago
Ranked 83 out of 98 regional Midwest Colleges by US News And World Report in the Regional Midwest Colleges List. Concordia serves over one thousand undergraduates and three thousand graduate students through its four colleges: The College of Arts and Sciences, College of Education, and College of Business, and College of Graduate and Innovative Programs. Many of these attend classes at sites around the Chicago metropolitan area, rather than on its River Forest campus. Concordia is a member of the Concordia University System, a network of ten American colleges and universities affiliated with the Lutheran Church – Missouri Synod.
Concordia Chicago teams participate as a member of the National Collegiate Athletic Association’s Division III. The Cougars are a member of the Northern Athletics Conference (NAC). Concordia Chicago was also a member of the Northern Illinois-Iowa Conference until the spring of 2006. Men’s sports include baseball, basketball, cross country, football, soccer, tennis and track & field; while women’s sports include basketball, cross country, soccer, softball, tennis, track & field and volleyball. The school colors are maroon and gold.
Concordia University Chicago has a music department, the current chair is Dr. Steven Wente. Dr. Richard Fischer is Director of Bands, where he conducts the Wind Symphony and University Band and teaches conducting and music education. The Wind Symphony, Concordia’s premiere instrumental ensemble, has performed in 43 states, Europe, and Asia. The group has released eleven recordings of sacred wind music. The ensemble has given many premiere performances, recently including Dr. Bradley Genevero’s transcription of “Bogoroditse Devo” from Rachmaninoff’s “All-Night Vigil,” Concordia alumnus Nicholas Stark’s “Reformation Fanfare” based on the hymn tune “A Mighty Fortress,” and Jacob Bancks’ setting of “Come, Thou Fount of Every Blessing.” The Wind Symphony performed at Carnegie Hall on March 4, 2014. Under the direction of Dr. Charles Brown, Kapelle, the university’s premiere choral ensemble, has performed around the U.S., Europe, and South America. The ensemble also has four recordings to its credit. Other groups include Schola Cantorum (Chapel Choir, conducted by Jonathan Kohrs), Chamber Orchestra (Maurice Boyer), Mannerchor (Men’s Chamber Choir with Charles Brown), Laudate (Women’s Chamber Choir with Maurice Boyer), Jazz Band (Kirk Garrison), University Handbells (Maurice Boyer), Cougar Band (student-led pep band), and other ensembles.