• 1916 : ICOF founded. At the time, it was known as the ‘Institut Sainte-Marie des Chartreux’ and was located in the Place Morel in the Croix Rousse area in the heart of the traditional silk-making quarter of Lyon. The establishment had about thirty female pupils. The Order of the Ursulines, founded by Angela Merici in 1535, was an important feature in the origin of ICOF.
  • Soon afterwards, in 1930, the Institut received patronage from the Lyon Chamber of Commerce. This clearly encouraged closer relations with companies and ensured the job placement of students once they had finished their studies at the Institut. This link with the Chamber of Commerce meant that the Institut was eligible to receive subsidies in the form of an ‘educational tax’. The Institut changed its name to the ‘Ecole Commerciale de Jeunes Filles’ and offered courses to prepare for official professional exams (such as the CAP-BEP and the Brevet d’Enseignement Commercial in 1937).
  • As the establishment’s reputation grew in the tertiary sector, the number of students increased, and so it was necessary to find new premises. In 1964, the Institut ‘changed hills’ and crossed to Lyon’s 5th arrondissement, and established itself at 8, avenue Debrousse. At the same time, the Institut took on a new name which was more in keeping with the identity of the establishment and the education it provided. The ICOF became the ‘Institut Commercial Féminin’.
  • The years which followed involved considerable growth; a status which allowed the ICOF to have a special contract with the Ministry of Education; and notably the creation of a technical secretarial section preparing students for an Executive Secretary BTS degree. The first ‘G’ Baccalauréat (the precursor of the STMG) class at the ICOF graduated the same year.
  • There was something of a revolution in 1970 at the ICOF. Until then, there had only been female pupils, but 1970 saw the start of mixed classes in the high school section.
  • Over the next decade, the establishment offered courses and further training schemes which were increasingly specific in a climate where there were an increasing number of new technologies, in particular in the field of IT. In 1982, the ICOF was designated a technical college, and took on the name by which it is currently known, the ‘Lycée Technique Privé ICOF’ – Innovation, Communication, Ouverture et Formation (Private Technical College – Innovation, Communication, Openness and Training).
  • In 1983, the French education system created changes for students who had completed a BEP professional diploma. This was followed by a new BTS diploma in Accounting and Management in 1988, and a reform of the ‘G’ Baccalauréat into the STT (Sciences and Tertiary Techniques) section in 1993. Consequently, the ICOF had to respond to requests for new courses. This is why a course offering the BTS diploma in Management Assistant in SMEs and SMIs opened in 1994. Similarly, the following year a new specialisation option in Management Information Systems was available to Upper Sixth students. As we start the 21st century, the ICOF is still looking to diversify and expand.
  • In 2005, a professional Bachelor’s degree of Payroll System Management in partnership with the Lycée des Chartreux and Lyon III University was created. In the same year, the ICOF distinguished itself from its competitors with regard to the STT Baccalauréat in the STG section, as it was the only institution to offer students in the Lower Sixth class all four options so that these students were better able to decide which of these four was to be their speciality in their final Upper Sixth year.