The objectives of the City College were to open “a high class English Institution”, to spread among the “younger generation of that time” the moral and highly liberal religious principles of mankind. The Institution was opened with the objective of educating Indian students of all races and creeds on an improved and comprehensive plan. Apart from the university syllabi, students were given training in various other subjects including music, science, gymnastics and moral science for building their character. Special care was taken for the moral education of the students.
In 1883 after two years a Law Department teaching up to the B.L. standard was added to it.; and in 1884 it was elevated to a first grade college. By the year 1920, the college was preparing students for the B.A. examination in English, Sanskrit, Political Economy and Political Philosophy, History and Persian and also for the B.Sc. examination in Mathematics, Physics and Chemistry. In 1939 a Commerce Department was opened and attained the position of the biggest college in Asia. This was followed by the inauguration of the Women’s Department in 1943.
In 1961 the branches of the City College emerged as separate colleges under instructions of the University Grants Commission. While the original college retained the original name “City College”, the branches were named as 1. Rammohan College, 2. Ananda Mohan College, 3. Umesh Chandra College, 4. City College of Commerce and Business Administration, 5. Sivanath Sastri College, 6. Heramba Chandra College, and 7. Prafulla Chandra College.
City College from its modest start has grown into a mighty institution during these 125 years. At present it has a strength of nearly 3000 students. The college offers a wide range of subject options to the students so that a majority of them may find a subject suited to his/her aptitude and career objectives. There are 14 subjects in which Honours courses are offered - Bengali, English, Sanskrit, Political Science, History, Philosophy, Physics, Chemistry, Mathematics, Economics, Botany, Zoology, Physiology and Commerce. Besides, general courses are offered in three different streams - B.A., B.Com. and B.Sc. (Physical Science and Biological Science). Thus, a student gets a wide choice of subjects, not to mention infrastructural support backed by a rich faculty.
The College has a rich library, containing multiple copies of text and reference books in all relevant areas of the subjects taught. The Library attempts to keep the users updated about new arrivals, career opportunities - both for further progress in higher education and for placement. The Library has received a special word of praise from the NAAC peer team, “….efficient management of the library for its proper maintenance and use by the students and teachers”.
There are opportunities for the students to play games like football, cricket, table tennis, chess etc. In the field of sports many students have achieved commendable success. The Students’ Union organizes blood donation camps, cultural functions, Shangri-La (Festival cum inter college competition) for a charitable cause. The College organizes several health check up camps in collaboration with various organizations. In keeping with present day requirements, the College has made a beginning in respect of career counselling and campus interview.
The College volunteered for NAAC accreditation in January 2007, and was assessed and accredited by the NAAC peer team in February 2007 and has been awarded B+ grade with a score of 78.5%.