Our Community

Columbia is home to a vibrant, curious and welcoming community of students and faculty, drawn together from every walk of life and corner of the world to live and learn in a truly global city. We are dreamers, changemakers and risk-takers dedicated to exploring new ideas and embracing a sweeping sense of possibility. 

It’s where you can ask big-picture questions, have high hopes and form high ideals. It's a chance to imagine—and to be part of—something greater.

student:

Columbia is one of the most collaborative and creative spaces to study, where students use their education to advance social interests both in and beyond New York City.

Adam
K.
Buffalo, NY
History, Political Science
fact:

100+

countries represented at Columbia

fact:

50+

cultural organizations

fact:

$215 million

awarded in financial aid grants in 2022-2023

fact:

49%

of undergraduates receive financial aid

A campus fueled by diversity.

From community-wide discourse on humanity’s most enduring questions to campus traditions that draw from the full spectrum of cultures, every sphere of the Columbia experience is enriched by all the diverse voices and perspectives among us.

Learn More About Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

Meet Our Community
student:
Columbia student Katherine E. from Hialeah, Florida

A college town in NYC: "Columbia’s campus is an oasis in the city. When you’re in the center of campus, it can be super quiet. You're not surrounded by the buzz of the city, which can be very comforting. My favorite thing to do in Morningside Heights is visit the parks, especially when dogs are able to run free in the morning. It’s always a boost being surrounded by fluffy dogs and greenery!"

Katherine
E.
Hialeah, FL
Neuroscience and Behavior
student:
Columbia student Kira R. from Westchester, New York

Columbia traditions: "Getting to see the Varsity Show perform during New Student Orientation Program has definitely been a Columbia highlight during my time here so far. The uniquely Columbia humor is something everybody can have fun with, and it is a great way to see how talented all our fellow classmates are!"

Kira
R.
Westchester, NY
African American and African Diaspora Studies, Political Science
student:
Columbia student Diego L. from Bogotá, Colombia

Campus community: "My favorite extracurricular that I'm involved with at Columbia is the International Student Advisory Board. Working under the Multicultural Affairs Office, we work as a small student-run group to advocate for international students on campus. Most of all, it's allowed me to make a difference for international students and allowed me to become extremely close with a large portion of the international student population on campus."

Diego
L.
Bogotá, Colombia
Computer Science, Economics
student:
Columbia student Sarah H. from Inverness, Illinois

"I currently live in Carlton Arms, which is a suite-style residence hall. It truly feels like a home. Every morning, I wake up and am greeted by my friends in our living room, and we'll go about our morning routines. It's very domestic and cozy, and it brings me great happiness."

Sarah
H.
Inverness, IL
English, Concentration in Mathematics
student:
Columbia College student Kath C.

Columbia traditions: "My favorite tradition is Tree Lighting. While lining up on College Walk with friends and counting down as we wait for the lights to come on is pretty magical, I mostly like what comes after Tree Lighting. Because the lights are on every night through the rest of the winter, I really love walking down College Walk late at night. It feels like a very quintessential Columbia experience."

Kath
C.
Moulton, AL
English, Concentration in Linguistics
student:
Columbia student Kianna P. from Farmington, New Mexico

"My favorite memory is when our Special Interest Community housing group was approved to live in a brownstone building, a new living space specifically for Indigenous students. It was a rewarding experience that I hope future generations of Indigenous youth will get to enjoy!"

Kianna
P.
Farmington, NM
Ethnicity and Race Studies (specialization in Indigenous/Native Studies), Political Science
student:
Columbia student Jeannie R. from Port Washington, New York

Campus community: "My favorite organization is the Columbia Undergraduate Law Review, where we publish legal scholarship written by undergraduate students from around the world. I first discovered CULR through their Summer Publishing Program the summer before my first year, so it has a special place as my first community at Columbia."

Jeannie
R.
Port Washington, NY
Computer Science, Philosophy
student:
Columbia Engineering student Elias T.-P.

Columbia traditions: "My favorite Columbia tradition is the student-run music festival, Bacchanal. It is an incredibly fun experience where everyone takes a day to relax by going out with friends to the Columbia lawns. I was able to hang out with friends and catch up with so many people after a busy semester and before finals start. It is such a great time, not to mention the wonderful artists that visit Columbia!"

Elias
T.-P.
Hamilton, OH
Biomedical Engineering
student:
Columbia student Jamie W. from West End, North Carolina

Campus community: "My friends and I have a tradition following a big final exam of sitting out on Math or Lewisohn lawn and spending hours just enjoying each other's company. The heart of campus can feel like an escape from NYC. It is simple, but it reminds me of the community I have found."

Jamie
W.
West End, NC
Biology, Public Health
student:
Columbia student Angel L. from New York, New York

Find me on campus: "I love grabbing lunch with friends at Faculty House, a newly opened dining hall at Columbia and my personal favorite! They have amazing mac-and-cheese and scrumptious deserts. After classes or a study session at the libraries, I also love grabbing boba or frozen yogurt at Cafe East with friends to reward myself with something refreshing."

Angel
L.
New York, NY
Neuroscience and Behavior
student:
Columbia student Athena P. from Kingston, Jamaica

Campus community: "Orchesis is Columbia's largest student-run dance group, and I found them at the Activities Fair in my first year. Our goal is to be as inclusive as possible and allow everyone the freedom to enjoy dance and find community. All who audition for Orchesis get cast in a piece because we truly want to accommodate as many people from as many styles and backgrounds as possible!"

Athena
P.
Kingston, Jamaica
Biomedical Engineering, Minor in Dance
Student crossing a New York City street
A student group gathers on South Lawn

Have questions? Reach out to our students directly. 

Want to learn from a current student about what it’s like to live in a residence hall? Hear how they made the transition from their small town to New York City? Learn about their favorite class this semester? Connect with a current Columbia student now.  

Reach Out

alumni:

Columbia taught me to think. To question. To care. It took me to Washington, DC, and to a public service career where I became the Attorney General of the United States.

Eric
Holder CC'73, Law '76
82nd Attorney General of the United States

Traditions

Columbia moments happen because of the people who come here and because of our history. Because this city is part of us and we are part of it. Completely unique to each student, yet oh-so-Columbia. They could only happen here.

Student Groups

Clubs here are some of the most interesting, rewarding, close-knit and fun micro-communities you’ll ever be part of. You will meet other students like you—students who want to make an impact in their community, continue a familiar passion, or discover a new one.

Academics

Across departments, schools and institutes, Columbians at every level are driven by a passion for discovery, working in the service of improving human understanding and the advancement of our global society.