Why Invest?

Core to Commencement is a multi-year, cross-generational partnership to enhance the entire Columbia College experience. It is the first-ever comprehensive campaign devoted exclusively to College students and their faculty.  Below are ways this initiative will help us continue offering the greatest undergraduate experience possible:

Endow the Core

Endowment for the Columbia College Core Curriculum

Strengthen the Center for the Core Curriculum as a think tank for the future of higher education, through increased programming and scholarly research that will be visible in the public eye.

Digital Initiative Fund

Support the creation of a virtual forum that amplifies the shared experience of the Core by allowing faculty and students to expand discussions across class sections, while also archiving their dialogue for future generations.

Core Visiting Fellows Program

Position Columbia to lead a vital effort to reinvigorate the liberal arts nationally and internationally through a program whereby visiting professors teach in the Core and carry the knowledge they gain back to their home institutions to enrich their curriculums with the Core philosophy of learning.

Senior Core Faculty Fund

Provide incremental compensation that rewards senior faculty for teaching in the Core, thus exposing both students and junior faculty to the wealth of knowledge held by the most esteemed members of Columbia’s intellectual community.

Core Summer Internships

Provide funding for students to engage in summer projects or internships at Columbia or in New York that expand their Core experience and understanding.

Core Capstone Project

Fund research projects or studies that allow seniors in Columbia College to further reflect on the Core and to integrate their accumulated experiences into a thoughtful thesis.

Endowment for each Core Course

Underwrite co-curricular activities in the Core, including faculty workshops, conferences, course-wide lectures and field trips that enrich both faculty and students while connecting Core material to real world experiences.

Columbia College Visiting Professorships for the Core

Replenish the academic departments that devote faculty to the Core, by providing visiting professors to fulfill departmental teaching needs, thereby facilitating the ability of top Columbia faculty to participate in the Core without detriment to their department.

Core Faculty Fellowship

Award Columbia’s most promising Ph.Ds with a prestigious postdoctoral fellowship to continue teaching in the Core, thus deepening the community of Core educators at Columbia.

Core Postdoctoral Fellowship in Civil and Political Rights

Cultivate Core scholars by providing recent Columbia PhD’s with Fellowships in order to develop and teach courses that link the Core to the study of contemporary civil rights and policy issues, of even greater relevance today.

Core Experience Fund

Expand the reach of the Core Curriculum through field trips to the great museums, monuments and cultural institutions of New York City, including the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Cathedral of Saint John the Divine, the Metropolitan Opera House and more.

Core Faculty Engagement Fund

Cultivate a strong community of Core faculty by supporting weekly pedagogy meetings, orientation programs for new professors, and annual conferences and workshops that build intellectual bonds around the shared experience of teaching in the Core.

Core Curriculum Development Fund

Invite faculty to develop and mount discipline-specific courses that link back to the Core, providing students the opportunity to link Core material to their major and deepen their understanding of key issues.

Core Research Grants

Provide for competitive grants to junior faculty who wish to pursue scholarly projects on the topic of liberal education, contributing to the establishment of the Center for the Core as the leader in liberal arts scholarship.

Course-wide Lectures for the Core

Bring the entire Core community of students and faculty together for topical lectures that further examine the masterpieces presented in Core classes. Past speakers have included such luminaries as Eric Kandel, Lee C. Bollinger, K. Anthony Appiah, Susan Neiman and Martha Nussbaum.

Second Century Fund

Invest in new technology for the future of the Core, to allow its rich intellectual content to be shared by students and alumni in innovative and modern ways. This includes media opportunities that distribute Core content virtually to our alumni, online book forums with annotations and guides for self-guided study, and more.

Keynote Lecture Liberal Arts Education

Bring a noted scholar or public intellectual to campus each year for a distinguished keynote lecture in liberal arts education, further establishing Columbia’s leadership in the field of philosophical and critical inquiry.

Individual Endowment for the Core Fund

Provide flexible funding for key Core initiatives that support students and faculty.

Support Our Students

Wellness Gift Opportunities
Director of Student Wellness

Name and endow this recently created position, which focuses on the most complex student wellness situations, supporting our on-call response, providing services to off-campus student populations, advising the Nightline student organization, and creating programming and other interventions to foster a campus culture that is supportive of wellness initiatives.

First-in-Family Adviser
Access and Opportunity

Provide expert, First-in-Family advising to those students who may benefit from additional tools, resources and guidance as they embark on the exciting and complex journey of being their family's first College attendee. 

Residence Hall Directors Fund
Fulfill the hiring of four additional professional live-in directors to meet the College’s  goal of providing higher staff to student ratios that will allow for stronger and more personalized relationships and support in residence halls, a crucial support system for students.  

Residence Hall Advisers Fund

Columbia relies on over 145 Residential Advisors to help cultivate a healthy student community. Through this gift, RA stipends could be raised to more appropriately acknowledge the important position RAs play in building student connectivity and community, as well as to be more comparable with peer institutions.

Residence Hall Lounges

Create an endowment that will name and renovate a major residence hall lounge (Wien, John Jay or Broadway) as well as provide programmatic funds, all in order to transform key spaces into welcoming,  multi-purpose social environments that would foster a strong residential community and culture. 

Residence Hall Fitness Facilities

Provide for the ongoing refurbishment and enhancements of several small fitness facilities in Columbia residence halls that support wellness through exercise opportunities that can reduce stress and encourage physical well-being.

Multicultural Meeting Space

Name and support a much-needed social space on campus, specifically a furnished multicultural meeting space in Lerner Hall for students of various backgrounds and identities to congregate, plan activities or relax together.

Community Programming Fund

Provide each Residence Advisor with an enhanced community stipend that would allow for more frequent and meaningful residence hall programming to draw students together and encourage thriving social and support systems.

Advance Orientation Program
Access and Opportunity

Establish an immersive advance orientation program for first-generation, low income and rural students who may lack the individual or family experience to adjust to life adeptly at a large university in a major urban center.

New Student Orientation Program Fund
Access and Opportunity

Underwrite the New Student Orientation Program (NSOP), a weeklong experience that allows first-years to spark new relationships and learn about the resources and opportunities available to them at Columbia. Your gift would eliminate the financial hurdle of attending NSOP ($450/student), which prevents many students from participating and starting college on the right footing.

Community-wide Events Fund

Help Columbia extend orientation through the entire first-year, by offering community-wide events and unique New York experiences that foster camaraderie and fellowship over a longer period of time, which students often need in order to truly adapt to College life at Columbia.

Faculty Mentoring Pilot Fund

Explore the potential of a faculty-mentoring program, whereby every student would be assigned a faculty mentor in their first year.

National Opportunity Program
Beyond the Classroom

Help recruit and retain the best students, regardless of their ability to pay, by endowing this pioneering and nationally recognized program.

Humanities Scholars Program
Access and Opportunity

Inaugurate a scholarship program for a distinguished cohort of humanities students.

CEO Internships
Beyond the Classroom

Reward outstanding students with high-quality internship experiences in a diverse array of industries in Amman, Beijing, Hong Kong, London, Shanghai and Singapore that arm them with global skills and perspectives.

Named Scholarships

Celebrate the diversity of our campus by supporting Columbia’s progressive approach to financial aid.

Presidential Global Fellowship
Beyond the Classroom

Award most promising first-years the chance to develop a strong global foundation through our unique study-abroad programs in connection to Columbia Global Centers.

Work Exemption Fund for Summer Experience
Beyond the Classroom

Make a summer experience possible for students on financial aid by relaxing the summer work expectation that hinders them from accepting -- or even exploring -- a summer internship, research, or study abroad opportunity that can allow for pursuit of real interests and opportunities.

Undergraduate Research Fellowship
Beyond the Classroom

Encourage meaningful student-faculty collaborations through summer research opportunities that produce cutting-edge knowledge, often in partnership with preeminent faculty.

Alumni and Parent Internship Fund
Beyond the Classroom

Support unpaid internship opportunities that free up scholarship recipients to explore all career options, regardless of financial constraints.

Support Our Faculty

Endowed Professorship
Ensure Columbia’s tradition of excellence in teaching and research.

Curriculum Development Fund 
Promote innovative course design through immediate funding for faculty, departments, centers or institutes.

Faculty Innovation Fund 
Award junior faculty funding that subsidizes work that is critical to success and tenure.

Classroom Enhancement 
Transform a classroom through renovation and technology enhancement.

Faculty and Department Offices 
Modernize the spaces occupied by our distinguished faculty and the offices where great scholarship occurs.

Student-Faculty Interaction Fund
Reward faculty for advising a greater number of undergraduate projects and support departments that provide pre–major-declaration advising.

Propel the Columbia College Fund

This historic campaign invites all College donors to participate.  In keeping with this theme, all gifts to the Columbia College Fund are counted toward the campaign results.  In addition to gifts of any size, the following current-use opportunities are also available:

Named Current-Use Scholarship 
Support a College student with a current-use scholarship named in honor of the donor or another name of the donor’s choosing.

Current-Use Scholarship (unnamed) 
Provide the College with much-needed latitude in fulfilling its commitment to need-based financial aid each year.

Alumni and Parent Internship Fund 
Provide a named current-use internship, affording a student valuable learning opportunities outside of the classroom.



To learn more about these opportunities to support Columbia College, contact Corey Aronstam, Deputy Vice President of Development.

 212-851-7458  |   ca2433@columbia.edu