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Columbia University

Columbia University is a private university in the United States and a member of the Ivy League. Columbia's main campus lies in the Morningside Heights neighborhood in the borough of Manhattan, in New York City. The university is now legally known as Columbia University in the City of New York. The institution was established as King's College by the Church of England, receiving a Royal Charter in 1754 from George II of Great Britain. One of only two universities in the United States to have been founded by royal charter, it was the first college established in the Province of New York, and the fifth college established in the Thirteen Colonies. After the American Revolution it was briefly chartered as a New York State entity from 1784-1787, however the university now operates under a 1787 charter that places the institution under a private board of trustees.

Columbia University is home to the Pulitzer Prize, which has rewarded outstanding achievement in journalism, literature and music for over a century. Columbia's Graduate School of Journalism was founded by Joseph Pulitzer.

Seventy-seven Nobel Prize winners have been affiliated with Columbia.

Columbia was the birthplace of FM radio, the first American university to offer historic preservation, anthropology and political science as academic disciplines, the first American school to grant the M.D. degree, and the birthplace of modern genetics. An early research center for Manhattan Project development of the atomic bomb, its Morningside Heights campus was the first North American site where the uranium atom was split. Literary and artistic movements as varied as the Harlem Renaissance (according to someone's opinion, but not necessarily reality), the Beat movement and postcolonialism all took shape at Columbia in the 20th century.

Columbia has had a long association with American political leaders. Among the earliest students and trustees of King's College were four "founding fathers" of the United States. U.S. Presidents Theodore Roosevelt and Franklin D. Roosevelt both studied law at Columbia, and Dwight D. Eisenhower was president of the University before making his White House bid. The 2008 Democratic Party presidential nominee Barack Obama received his undergraduate degree at Columbia, as did current U.S. Attorney General Michael Mukasey, the current Governor of New York State David Paterson, and a number of current U.S. Senators and Representatives to Congress.

Campus

Morningside Heights

Most of Columbia's graduate and undergraduate studies are conducted in Morningside Heights at Seth Low's late-19th century vision of a university campus where all disciplines could be taught in one location. The campus was designed along Beaux-Arts principles by acclaimed architects McKim, Mead, and White and is considered one of their best works.

Columbia's main campus occupies more than six city blocks, or 32 acres (132,000 m²), in Morningside Heights, a neighborhood located between the Upper West Side and Harlem sections of Manhattan that contains a number of academic institutions. The university owns over 7,800 apartments in Morningside Heights, which house faculty, graduate students, and staff. Almost two dozen undergraduate dormitories (purpose-built or converted) are located on campus or in Morningside Heights.

New buildings and structures on the campus, especially those built following the Second World War, have often only been constructed after a contentious process often involving open debate and protest over the new structures. Often the complaints raised by these protests during these periods of expansion have included issues beyond the debate over the construction of any of the architectural features which diverged from the original McKim, Mead, and White plan, and often involved complaints against the administration of the university. This was the case with Uris Hall, which sits behind Low Library, built in the 1960s, and the more recent Alfred Lerner Hall, a deconstructivist structure completed in 1998 and designed by Columbia's then-Dean of Architecture, Bernard Tschumi. Elements of these same issues have been reflected in the current debate over the future expansion of the campus into Manhattanville, several blocks uptown from the current campus.

Columbia's library system includes over 9.5 million volumes. One library of note on campus is the Avery Architectural and Fine Arts Library which is the largest library of architecture in the United States and among, if not the largest, in the world. The library contains more than 400,000 volumes, of which most are non-circulating and must be read on site. One of the library's prominent undertakings is the Avery Index to Architectural Periodicals, which is one of the foremost international resources for locating citations to architecture and related topics in periodical literature. The Avery Index covers periodicals thoroughly back to the 1930s, with limited coverage dating to the nineteenth century, up to the present day.

Several buildings on the Morningside Heights campus are listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Low Memorial Library, the centerpiece of the campus, is listed for its architectural significance. Philosophy Hall is listed as the site of the invention of FM radio. Also listed is Pupin Hall, another National Historic Landmark, which houses the physics and astronomy departments, where initial experiments on the nuclear fission of uranium were conducted by Enrico Fermi. The uranium atom was split there ten days after the world's first atom-splitting in Copenhagenhaper, Denmark.

Other campuses

Health-related schools are located at the Columbia University Medical Center, twenty acres located in the neighborhood of Washington Heights, fifty blocks uptown. Columbia also owns the 26 acre Baker Field, which includes the Lawrence A. Wien Stadium as well as facilities for field sports, outdoor track and tennis, at the northern tip of Manhattan island (in the neighborhood of Inwood). There is a third campus on the west bank of the Hudson River, the Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory in Palisades, New York, and another, the 60 acre Nevis Laboratories, in Irvington, New York. There is a satellite campus in Paris, Reid Hall. The Arden House in Harriman, New York is primarily used for the Executive MBA Program.

University Hospital

New York-Presbyterian Hospital is affiliated with medical schools of both Columbia and Cornell universities. According to the US News and World Report's Americas Best Hospitals 2007, it is ranked 6th overall (3rd among university hospitals). Columbia medical school has a strategic partnership with New York State Psychiatric Institute. Columbia is also affiliated with nineteen hospitals in the US and four hospitals overseas.

History

Columbia is the oldest institution of higher education in the state of New York. Founded and chartered as King's College in 1754, Columbia is the sixth-oldest such institution in the United States (by date of founding; fifth by date of chartering). After the American Revolutionary War, King's College was renamed Columbia College in 1784, and in 1896 it was further renamed Columbia University. Columbia has grown over time to encompass twenty schools and affiliated institutions.

King's College: 1754–1776

Discussions regarding the foundation of a college in the Province of New York began as early as 1704, but serious consideration of such proposals was not entertained until the early 1750s, when local graduates of Yale and members of the congregation of Trinity Church (then Church of England, now Episcopal) in New York City became alarmed by the establishment of the College of New Jersey (now Princeton University); both because it was founded by "new-light" Presbyterians influenced by the evangelical Great Awakening and, as it was located in the province just across the Hudson River, because it provoked fears of New York developing a cultural and intellectual inferiority. They established their own 'rival' institution, King's College, and elected as its first president Samuel Johnson. Classes began on July 17, 1754 in Trinity Church yard, with Johnson as the sole faculty member. A few months later, on October 31, 1754, Great Britain's King George II officially granted a royal charter for the college. In 1760, King's College moved to its own building at Park Place, near the present City Hall, and in 1767 it established the first American medical school to grant the M.D. degree.

Controversy surrounded the founding of the new college in New York, as it was a thoroughly Church of England institution dominated by the influence of Crown officials, such as the Archbishop of Canterbury and the Crown Secretary for Plantations and Colonies, in its governing body. Fears of the establishment of a Church of England episcopacy and of Crown influence in America through King's College were underpinned by its vast wealth, far surpassing all other colonial colleges of the period.

The American Revolution and the subsequent war were catastrophic for King's College. It suspended instruction in 1776, and remained so for eight years, beginning with the arrival of the Continental Army in the spring of that year and continuing with the military occupation of New York City by British troops until their departure in 1783. The college's library was looted and its sole building requisitioned for use as a military hospital first by American and then British forces. Additionally, many of the college's alumni, primarily Loyalists, fled to Canada or Great Britain in the war's aftermath, leaving its future governance and financial status in question.

Although the college had been considered a bastion of Tory sentiment, it nevertheless produced many key leaders of the Revolutionary generation - individuals later instrumental in the college's revival. Among the earliest students and trustees of King's College were four "founding fathers" of the United States: John Jay, who negotiated the Treaty of Paris between the United States and Great Britain, ending the Revolutionary War, and who later became the first Chief Justice of the United States; Alexander Hamilton, military aide to General George Washington, author of most of the Federalist Papers, and the first Secretary of the Treasury; Gouverneur Morris, the author of the final draft of the United States Constitution; and Robert R. Livingston, a member of the Committee of Five that drafted the Declaration of Independence. Hamilton's first experience with the military came while a student during the summer of 1775, after the outbreak of fighting at Boston. Along with Nicholas Fish, Robert Troup, and a group of other students from King's he joined a volunteer militia company called the "Hearts of Oak" – Hamilton achieving the rank of Lieutenant. They adopted distinctive uniforms, complete with the words "Liberty or Death" on their hatbands, and drilled under the watchful eye of a former British officer in the graveyard of the nearby St. Paul's Chapel. In August 1775, while under fire from the HMS Asia, the Hearts of Oak (a.k.a. the "Corsicans") participated in a successful raid to seize cannon from the Battery, becoming an artillery unit thereafter. Ironically, in 1776 Captain Hamilton would engage in and survive the Battle of Harlem Heights, which took place on and around the site that would become home to his Alma Mater over a century later, only to be - after his dueling death twenty-eight years later - entombed on the site of the first home for King's College in the Trinity Church yard.

Early Columbia College: 1784–1857

After the war, the remaining members of the Board of Governors of King’s sought to resuscitate the college, petitioning the Legislature of New York to “make such alterations in the Charter as the changed condition of affairs might demand.” The Legislature agreed, and on May 1, 1784, it passed “an Act for granting certain privileges to the College heretofore called King’s College.” The Act created a Board of Regents to oversee the resuscitation of King’s, giving them the power to hire a college president and appoint professors, but prohibiting the College from administering any “religious test-oath” to its faculty. Finally, in an effort to demonstrate its support for the New Republic, the Legislature stipulated that “the College within the City of New York heretofore called King’s College be forever hereafter called and known by the name of Columbia College.”

On May 5, 1784, the Regents held their first meeting, instructing Treasurer Brockholst Livingston and Secretary Robert Harpur (who was Professor of Mathematics and Natural Philosophy at King’s) to recover the books, records and any other assets that had been dispersed during the war, and appointing a committee to supervise the repairs of the college building. In addition, the Regents moved quickly to rebuild Columbia’s faculty, appointing William Cochran instructor of Greek and Latin.

In the summer of 1784, after the legislature passed the act restoring the college, Major General James Clinton, a hero of the revolutionary war, brought his son DeWitt Clinton to New York on his way to enroll him as a student at the College of New Jersey. When James Duane, the Mayor of New York and a member of the Regents, heard that the younger Clinton was leaving the state for his education, he pleaded with Cochran to offer him admission to the reconstituted Columbia. Cochran agreed - in no small part due to the fact that DeWitt’s uncle, George Clinton, the Governor of New York, had recently been elected Chancellor of the College by the Regents - and DeWitt Clinton became one of nine students admitted to Columbia that year.

As the state proved negligent in its funding of the institution, this arrangement became increasingly unsatisfactory for both. An expansion of the Regents to 20 New York City residents had placed Hamilton and Jay at the helm, and they, along with Duane, argued for privatization of the college. In 1787 a new charter was adopted for the college, still in use today, granting power to a private board of Trustees. Samuel Johnson's son, William Samuel Johnson, became its president.

For a period in the 1790s, with New York City as the federal and state capital and the country under successive Federalist governments, a revived Columbia thrived under the auspices of Federalists such as Hamilton and Jay. George Washington, notably, attended the commencement of 1790, and nascent interest in legal education commenced under Professor James Kent. As the state and country transitioned to a considerably more Jeffersonian era, however, the college's good fortunes began to dry up. The primary difficulty was funding; the college, already receiving less from the state following its privatization, was beset with even more financial difficulties as hostile politicians took power and as new upstate colleges, particularly Hamilton and Union, lobbied effectively for subsidies. What Columbia did receive was Manhattan real estate, which would only later prove lucrative.

Columbia's performance flagged for the remainder of the 19th century's first half. The law faculty never managed to thrive during this period, and in 1807 the medical school, hoping to arrest its decline, broke off to merge with the independent College of Physicians and Surgeons. Contention between students and faculty were highlighted by the "Riotous Commencement" of 1811, in which students violently protested the faculty's decision not to confer a degree upon John Stevenson, who had inserted objectionable words into his commencement speech. Though the college was finally able to shake its embarrassing reputation for structural shabbiness by adding several wings to College Hall and refinishing it in the more fashionable Greek Revival style, the effort failed to halt Columbia's long-term downturn, and was soon overshadowed by the Gibbs Affair of 1854, in which famed chemistry professor Oliver Wolcott Gibbs was denied a professorship at the college, from which he had graduated, due to his Unitarian affiliation. The event demonstrated to many, including frustrated diarist and trustee George Templeton Strong, the narrow-mindedness of the institution. By July, 1854 the Christian Examiner of Boston, in an article entitled "The Recent Difficulties at Columbia College", noted that the school was "good in classics" yet "weak in sciences", and had "very few distinguished graduates".

Expansion and the move to Madison Avenue

In 1857, the College moved from Park Place to a primarily Gothic Revival campus on 49th Street and Madison Avenue, where it remained for the next fifty years. The transition to the new campus coincided with a new outlook for the college; during the commencement of that year, College President Charles King proclaimed Columbia "a university". During the last half of the nineteenth century, under the leadership of President F.A.P. Barnard, the institution rapidly assumed the shape of a true modern university. Columbia Law School was founded in 1858, and in 1864 the School of Mines, the country's first such institution and the precursor to today's Fu Foundation School of Engineering and Applied Science, was established. Barnard College for women, established by the eponymous Columbia president, was established in 1889; the Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons came under the aegis of the University in 1891, followed by Teachers College, Columbia University in 1893. The Graduate Faculties in Political Science, Philosophy, and Pure Science awarded its first PhD in 1875. This period also witnessed the inauguration of Columbia's participation in intercollegiate sports, with the creation of the baseball team in 1867, the organization to the football team in 1870, and the creation of a crew team by 1873. The first intercollegiate Columbia football game was a 6-3 loss to Rutgers. The Columbia Daily Spectator began publication during this period as well, in 1877.

Morningside Heights

In 1896, the trustees officially authorized the use of yet another new name, Columbia University, and today the institution is officially known as "Columbia University in the City of New York." Additionally, the engineering school was renamed the "School of Mines, Engineering and Chemistry." At the same time, University president Seth Low moved the campus again, from 49th Street to its present location, a more spacious (and, at the time, more rural) campus in the developing neighborhood of Morningside Heights. The site was formerly occupied by the Bloomingdale Insane Asylum. One of the asylum's buildings, the warden's cottage (later known as East Hall and Buell Hall), is still standing today.

The building often depicted as emblematic of Columbia is the centerpiece of the Morningside Heights campus, Low Memorial Library. Constructed in 1895, the building is still referred to as "Low Library" although it has not functioned as a library since 1934. It currently houses the offices of the President and Provost, the Visitor's Center, the Trustees' Room and Columbia Security. Patterned on several precursors, including the Parthenon and the Pantheon, it is surmounted by the largest all-granite dome in the United States.

Under the leadership of Low's successor, Nicholas Murray Butler, Columbia rapidly became the nation's major institution for research, setting the "multiversity" model that later universities would adopt. On the Morningside Heights campus, Columbia centralized on a single campus the College, the School of Law, the Graduate Faculties, the School of Mines (predecessor of the Engineering School), and the College of Physicians & Surgeons. Butler went on to serve as president of Columbia for over four decades and became a giant in American public life (as one-time vice presidential candidate and a Nobel Laureate). His introduction of "downtown" business practices in university administration led to innovations in internal reforms such as the centralization of academic affairs, the direct appointment of registrars, deans, provosts, and secretaries, as well as the formation of a professionalized university bureaucracy, unprecedented among American universities at the time.

In 1893 the Columbia University Press was founded in order to "promote the study of economic, historical, literary, scientific and other subjects; and to promote and encourage the publication of literary works embodying original research in such subjects." Among its publications are The Columbia Encyclopedia, first published in 1935, and The Columbia Lippincott Gazetteer of the World, first published in 1952.

In 1902, New York newspaper magnate Joseph Pulitzer donated a substantial sum to the University for the founding of a school to teach journalism. The result was the 1912 opening of the Graduate School of Journalism — the only journalism school in the Ivy League. The school is the administrator of the Pulitzer Prize and the duPont-Columbia Award in broadcast journalism.

In 1904 Columbia organized adult education classes into a formal program called Extension Teaching (later renamed University Extension). Courses in Extension Teaching eventually give rise to the Columbia Writing Program, the Columbia Business School, and the School of Dentistry and Oral Surgery.

Columbia Business School was added in the early 20th century. During the first half of the 20th Century Columbia and Harvard had the largest endowments in the US.

By the late 1930s, a Columbia student could study with the likes of Jacques Barzun, Paul Lazarsfeld, Mark Van Doren, Lionel Trilling, and I. I. Rabi. The University's graduates during this time were equally accomplished — for example, two alumni of Columbia's Law School, Charles Evans Hughes and Harlan Fiske Stone (who also held the position of Law School dean), served successively as Chief Justices of the United States. Dwight Eisenhower served as Columbia's president from 1948 until he became the President of the United States in 1953.

Research into the atom by faculty members John R. Dunning, I. I. Rabi, Enrico Fermi and Polykarp Kusch placed Columbia's Physics Department in the international spotlight in the 1940s after the first nuclear pile was built to start what became the Manhattan Project.

Following the end of World War II the School of International Affairs was founded in 1946. Focusing on developing diplomats and foreign affairs specialists the school began by offering the Master of International Affairs. To satisfy an increasing desire for skilled public service professionals at home and abroad, the School added the Master of Public Administration degree in 1977. In 1981 the School was renamed the School of International and Public Affairs (SIPA). The School introduced an MPA in Environmental Science and Policy in 2001 and, in 2004, SIPA inaugurated its first doctoral program — the interdisciplinary Ph.D. in Sustainable Development.

In 1947, to meet the needs of GIs returning from World War II, University Extension was reorganized as an undergraduate college and designated the Columbia University School of General Studies. While University Extension had granted the B.S. degree since 1921, the School of General Studies first granted the B.A. degree in 1968.

Columbia College first admitted women in the fall of 1983 after a decade of failed negotiations with Barnard College, an all female institution affiliated with the University, to merge the two schools. Barnard College still remains affiliated with Columbia and all Barnard graduates are issued diplomas authorized by both Columbia and Barnard.

In 1990 the Faculty of Arts & Sciences was created, unifying the faculties of Columbia College, the School of General Studies, the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, and the School of International and Public Affairs.

In 1997, the Columbia Engineering School was renamed the Fu Foundation School of Engineering and Applied Science, in honor of Chinese businessman Z. Y. Fu, who gave Columbia $26 million. The school is now referred to as "SEAS" or simply, "the engineering school."

As of April 2007, the university had purchased more than two-thirds of 17 acres desired for a new campus in Manhattanville, to the north of the Morningside Heights campus. Stretching from 125th Street to 133rd Street, the new campus would house buildings for Columbia's schools of business and the arts and allow the construction of the Jerome L. Greene Center for Mind, Brain, and Behavior, where research will occur on neurodegenerative diseases such as Parkinson's and Alzheimer's. The $7 billion expansion plan includes demolishing all buildings, except three that are historically significant, eliminating the existing light industry and storage warehouses, and relocating tenants in 132 apartments.

The project has suffered from criticism of a lack of transparency and concern for community needs. According to the Environmental Impact Statement recently certified by the Department of City Planning, almost 300 people would be displaced from the project zone, and almost 3,300 would be displaced from areas surrounding it. Community activist groups in West Harlem have committed to fighting the expansion. Despite a constant barrage of opposition at a series of public hearings, the City Council of New York green-lighted Columbia's Manhattanville expansion plan on December 19th, 2007, after receiving strong support from Councilman Robert Jackson (D-West Harlem) and Councilwoman Inez Dickens (D-Central Harlem). Critics accuse the university of having used its political muscle to silence dissent. At least one landowner claims to have been "threatened" by university representatives.

On April 11, 2007, Columbia University announced a $400m to $600m donation from media billionaire John Kluge to be used exclusively for financial aid. The donation is among the largest single gifts to higher education. Its exact value will depend on the eventual value of Kluge's estate at the time of his death.

Academics

Admissions and financial aid

In 2008, Columbia College admitted 8.7% of applicants for the Class of 2012, one of the lowest rates in the country. The Fu Foundation School of Engineering and Applied Sciences admitted 17.6%, a record for the School.

Columbia is also a diverse school, with approximately 49% of all students identifying themselves as persons of color. Additionally, over 50% of all undergraduates in the Class of 2011 will be receiving financial aid. The average financial aid package for these students exceeds $27,000, with an average grant size of over $20,000.

Organization

Columbia has three undergraduate institutions:

Columbia also has a number of graduate and professional schools, including:

The university is affiliated with Barnard College, Teachers College, the Union Theological Seminary, and the Jewish Theological Seminary of America, all located nearby in Morningside Heights. A joint undergraduate program is available through the Jewish Theological Seminary of America as well as through the Juilliard School.

Rankings

The undergraduate school of Columbia University is ranked 8th (tied with University of Chicago and Duke University) among national universities by U.S. News and World Report (USNWR), 7th among world universities and 6th among universities in the Americas by Shanghai Jiao Tong University, 9th by Forbes, 10th among world universities and 6th in North America by the THES - QS World University Rankings, 10th among "global universities" by Newsweek, and 1st in the U.S. among both national research universities and private universities by The Center for Measuring University Performance. According to the National Research Council, graduate programs are ranked 8th nationally.

According to the U.S. News & World Report,The Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism, home to the Pulitzer Prize, ranks #1. Teachers College (Columbia's Graduate School of Education) ranks #4. School of Social Work ranks #4. The Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation (GSAPP) ranks #3 (according to Architect magazine's November 2007 issue). Columbia Law School ranks #4. The Mailman School of Public Health ranks #6. Columbia Business School ranks #9 (#2 according to The Financial Times; #6 according to Fortune Magazine). Columbia's medical school, called the College of Physicians and Surgeons, ranks #11. According to Foreign Policy magazine, the School of International & Public Affairs (SIPA) PhD program (overall) in international relations is ranked #2, and the Master's program (policy area) is ranked #5. Finally, Columbia's Institute of Human Nutrition ranks #1 according to The Chronicle for Higher Education.

Academic freedom

The University states that it "is committed to maintaining a climate of academic freedom," in which professors are given the "widest possible latitude in their teaching and scholarship. Its policy on academic freedom prohibits the penalization by the University of a professor for expressions of opinion or associations in their private or civic capacity.

In 2005, the University became embroiled in a controversy regarding the academic freedom of students in connection with their studies in the department of Middle East and Asian Languages and Cultures ("MEALAC"). The students charged that MEALAC faculty showed an anti-Israel bias, with one student who was formerly with the Israeli Defense Forces charging that a professor, Joseph Massad, refused to answer his question until he "revealed how many Palestinians he had killed." The professor denied that the incident took place. A group called "The David Project produced a documentary entitled Columbia Unbecoming in which the charges were made. In response, President Bollinger convened an ad hoc panel to investigate the incidents described in the film and established a standing panel and grievance procedure for future claims of student intimidation.

High School Programs

Columbia offers a program called the Columbia University Science Honors Program, which is a program that caters to high school students (sophomores, juniors, and seniors). The program is highly competitive, admitting about one-sixth of applicants who are selected based on their transcripts, student-written essays, a teacher recommendation, and a three-hour science and math test. It offers college-level courses in science and math every Saturday during the academic year.

Life

The geography of student life

Alma Mater

This name refers to a statue on the steps (see below) of Low Memorial Library by sculptor Daniel Chester French. There is a small owl "hidden" on the sculpture. Alma Mater is also the subject of many Columbia legends. The main legends include that the first student in the freshmen class to find the hidden owl on the statue will be valedictorian, and that any subsequent Barnard student who finds it will marry a Columbia man, seeing as how Barnard is a women's college.

Butler Library

The main library, packed during midterms and finals weeks, is composed of three main parts: the stacks, the study rooms, and the cafe. Students are known to leave their belongings as a placeholder for days on end, a few only leaving the library to sleep a few hours while others come and go as they please. During finals, to get a spot at Butler, students wake up early in the morning and compete with others for a seat. Some students are reported to have gone so far as to set up offices in disused sections of the library on the ninth floor. Butler houses 1.9 million of the university's 9.2 million volumes, mostly in the humanities and history. Unlike the libraries of most other schools, Butler remains at least partially open 24 hours a day and acts as a center of late night studying. Butler also houses Columbia University's Rare Books and Manuscripts Library (including the Columbiana University Archives), the Philip L. Milstein Undergraduate Library, the Oral History collection, and the Butler Media Collection. Butler Library is one of two dozen libraries on campus, mostly distinguished by subject disciplines.

Residence halls

First-year students usually live in one of the residence halls situated around South Lawn: Hartley, Wallach, John Jay, Furnald or Carman. Upperclass students may also live in Hartley and Wallach, which are collectively part of the Living and Learning Center (LLC), through a highly selective application process. Other upperclassmen participate in a housing lottery. Rising sophomores may also live in Furnald Hall, depending on the lottery results. The other upperclassmen students can choose, depending on their luck, among Broadway, East Campus, 47 Claremont, Hogan, McBain Hall, River Hall, Ruggles Hall, Schapiro, 600 W 113th, Watt Hall, Wien Hall, and Woodbridge Hall. Most students consider a townhouse in East Campus the best suite style housing option, which includes two-story suites for six students including a kitchen, common lounge, large single rooms, and a quiet location. A four or five person suite in Hogan, in which each person lives in a single and the suite shares a full kitchen, bathroom and living room, is also considered excellent housing, as its location is near many restaurants on Broadway and much closer to the subway than East Campus. Very lucky seniors with the best lottery numbers can get their own studio apartment in Watt.

The Steps

"The Steps", alternatively known as "Low Steps" or the "Urban Beach", are a popular meeting area and hangout for Columbia students. The term refers to the long series of granite steps leading from the lower part of campus (South Field) to its upper terrace, atop which sits Low Memorial Library, as well as adjacent areas, including Low Plaza and small nearby lawns. On warm days, particularly in the spring, the steps become crowded with students conversing, reading, or sunbathing. Occasionally, they play host to film screenings and concerts. The King's Crown Shakespeare Troupe annually performs an outdoor play by "The Bard of Avon", in which the Steps frequently play a prominent role. The design of the steps are modeled after the architecture in Raphael's "The School of Athens," a fresco in the Vatican.

Sundial

This elevated stone pedestal at the center of the main campus quadrangle now serves as a podest for various speeches. Originally there was a large granite sphere located upon the pedestal, which would mark the time via its shadow. It sat upon the pedestal from approximately 1914 to 1946. It was removed in that year due to cracks that formed within it. The ball was assumed destroyed for 55 years until it was discovered intact in a Michigan field in 2001. As of 2006, it seems unlikely that the sundial will ever be restored to a working state.

Tunnels

Columbia University has an extensive underground tunnel system dating back more than a century, with the oldest portions existing even before the present campus was constructed. Some of these tunnels are open to students today, while others have been closed off to the public.

Online

Columbia's most famous online contribution has been Go Ask Alice!, which, since 1993, has provided students and the general public with frank and progressive answers to anonymously posted health questions. Topics covered include drug abuse, sexuality, and interpersonal and romantic relationships. The site receives approximately 2,000 questions a week.

In recent years, new outlets for Columbia student life have opened online. Some, such as the Bwog, the blog of the undergraduate magazine The Blue and White and a medium for campus gossip, and the professor ratings site CULPA (the Columbia Underground Listing of Professor Ability), have flourished. CULPA, established in 1997 and unaffiliated officially with the university, allows students to anonymously post their own reviews of their professors. It is regarded as one of the most useful tools for students looking to enroll in a class, boasting over 10,000 reviews. Because of the candid nature of the submissions, the site has occasionally been accused of harboring biased reviews and misrepresenting professors. Still, it is the main source of professor review currently available to the Columbia student body.

Students have launched a number of other, sometimes pioneering, websites. CU Community was a popular online networking website created by Adam Goldberg (SEAS ´06) containing 85% of the undergraduate student body, that later rebranded itself CampusNetwork and launched across several universities, before succumbing to its long-time competitor, Facebook. The Columbia Daily Spectator launched a blog called SpecBlogs, but this has also since been shut down. Other ventures have been more successful. Carsplit, also created by Adam Goldberg (SEAS ´06), launched in 2005 as a way for students to split the cost of taking a taxi to the airport. Usage peaks during winter break where, last year, over 1,000 students used the service. CU Snacks, authored by Brandon Arbiter (SEAS ´06) was one of the first online, late night snack delivery services. It started from Wien Residence Hall in 2004 and, although it remains completely student-run, it is now part of the experiential education program of Columbia's Center for Career Education. A more recent launch was WikiCU,, a student-run wiki about Columbia University and its surrounding neighborhood of Morningside Heights.

Clubs and activities

Publications

Major publications include the Columbia Daily Spectator, the nation's second-oldest student newspaper; The Current , a journal of politics, culture and Jewish Affairs; The Columbian, the second oldest collegiate yearbook in the nation; Columbia Review, the nation's oldest college literary magazine; The Columbia Journal of Literary Criticism; The Columbia Observer; the Columbia Science Review, the Columbia Political Review, the multi-partisan political magazine of the Columbia Political Union; The Fed a triweekly satire and investigative newspaper; Jester of Columbia, the newly (and frequently) revived campus humor magazine; The Blue and White, a literary magazine established in 1890 that has recently begun to foray into in-depth pieces on campus life and politics; and the Journal of Politics & Society, a journal of undergraduate research in the social sciences, published by the Helvidius Group. In 2008, Columbia undergraduates composed for online and print the Columbia East Asian Review, which allows undergraduates at Columbia and throughout the world to publish original work on China, Japan, Korea, Tibet, and Vietnam. Columbia also has an online arts and literary web magazine, The Mobius Strip. AdHoc, denotes itself as the "progressive" campus magazine; it deals largely with local political issues and arts events. Another group of undergraduates started The Current, a journal of politics, culture, and Jewish affairs. The Birch, Columbia's undergraduate journal of Eastern European and Eurasian culture, is the first national student-run undergraduate journal of its kind. Professional journals published by academic departments at Columbia University include Current Musicology and The Journal of Philosophy. The Science Review is the University's only science magazine that prints hard copies; it prints general interest articles, faculty profiles and student research papers. During the spring semester, graduate students in the Journalism School publish The Bronx Beat,a bi-weekly newspaper covering the South Bronx.

Broadcasting

Columbia is home to two pioneers in undergraduate student broadcasting, WKCR-FM and CTV.

WKCR, the student run radio station broadcasts to the Tri-State area and claims to be the oldest FM radio station in the world, owing to the University's affiliation with Major Edwin Armstrong. The station currently has its studios on the second floor of Alfred Lerner Hall on the Morningside campus with its main transmitter tower at 4 Times Square in Midtown Manhattan.

Columbia Television (CTV) is the nation's second oldest student television station and home of CTV News, a weekly live news program produced by undergraduate students. CTV transmits a cablecast and webcast from its studio in Alfred Lerner Hall.

Speech and debate

The Philolexian Society is a literary and debating club founded in 1802, making it the oldest student group at Columbia, as well as the third oldest collegiate literary society in the country. It has many famous alumni, and administers the Joyce Kilmer Bad Poetry Contest (see below).

The Columbia University Mock Trial Program was founded in 1998. It fields four teams that compete in tournaments across the country under the umbrella American Mock Trial Association (AMTA). In recent years the Columbia Mock Trial Program has won tournaments at Northwestern University, George Washington University, Yale University, UCLA, as well as three Northeast Regional Titles. The Columbia program is one of the best in the country, ranked in the Top-Ten since 2003 and peaking at the Number 2 ranking in 2004. In 2005-2006, Columbia Mock Trial had one team finish 5th Place at the National Tournament in St. Petersburg, FL and one team finish 6th Place at the National Championship Tournament in Des Moines, Iowa. Every year Columbia hosts the Columbia University Big Apple Invitational Tournament (CUBAIT), one of the best invitational tournaments in the nation. CUBAIT annually attracts many of the top twenty teams in the nation.

The Columbia Model United Nations holds several functions. Its traveling team competes in conferences both domestically and internationally and is considered one of the top Model United Nations teams in the country. It also holds the Columbia Model United Nations Conference and Exposition (CMUNCE), an annual high school international affairs conference, founded in 2001 by Erica DeBruin. The conference is known for its crisis-oriented committees and the comparatively small committee size. Columbia Model United Nations in New York (CMUNNY]), is a small crisis-oriented Model United Nations conference for college students that prides itself in non-conventional committees. It was founded in 2006 by David Coates.

The Columbia Parliamentary Debate Team, competes in tournaments around the country as part of the American Parliamentary Debate Association, and hosts both high school and college tournaments on Columbia's campus, as well as public debates on issues affecting the university.

Greek life

Columbia University is home to many fraternities, sororities, and co-educational Greek organizations. Approximately 10–15% of undergraduate students are associated with Greek life. There has been a Greek presence on campus since the establishment in 1842 of the Lambda Chapter of Psi Upsilon. Today, there are thirteen NIC fraternities on the campus. The prominent fraternities at Columbia include:

In addition, there are four NPC sororities on campus:

There are also various multicultural Greek organizations, including:

Entrepreneurship at Columbia

The Columbia University Organization of Rising Entrepreneurs (CORE) was founded in 1999. The student-run group aims to foster entrepreneurship on campus. Each year CORE hosts dozens of events, including a business plan competition and a series of seminars. Recent seminar speakers include Mark Cuban, owner of the Dallas Mavericks and Chairman of HDNet, and Blake Ross, creator of Mozilla Firefox. As of 2006, CORE has awarded graduate and undergraduate students with over $100,000 in seed capital. Events are possible through the contributions of various private and corporate groups; previous sponsors include Deloitte & Touche, Citigroup, and i-Compass. There are currently over 2,000 members in CORE. The organization is governed by its executive board, which comprises fifteen undergraduates.

Other

The Chinese Students Club (CSC) of Columbia University is the largest Asian cultural group on campus that promotes, social, cultural and political activities both on and off campus. They host various events and activities throughout the school year intended to promote awareness of Chinese culture at Columbia. All of their events are open to everyone; they are Chinese in theme, but not limited to Chinese in attendance. They also have under four satellite groups, ranging from the Lion Dance Team and Radiance Dance Troupe , to the CSC-Connect Peer Mentoring Program , English Tutoring Program and Chinese Yo-yo. CSC strives to share our culture with others. The events sponsored by CSC range from social mixers to political forums. Our annual events include the Lunar Gala, one of the biggest student-run productions on Columbia, the CSC Night Market, our Inter-Cultural Benefit Dinner, the CSC Semi-formal, and Rice Bowl (a sports tournament).

During the 2007-2008 academic year, the Columbia University Asian American Alliance (AAA or triple-A) became one of the most active Asian American student organizations in the nation and one of the largest student organizations at Columbia. During its past three years of growth, AAA has founded the regional NYC Asian American student conference and a national daily blog on Asian American issues called TheBlaaag. With three subcommittees that specialize in social life, political issues, and community service, AAA works on a variety of issues including addressing hate crimes and bias incidents, large scale event programming, social networking, workshops, and collaborating with the greater community at Columbia.

Black Students Organization The Columbia University Black Students Organization is one of the oldest and most active organizations of its kind in the nation. Dating back to as early as 1964, the BSO still remains an active force on the Columbia University campus. It runs one of the few student operated safe spaces on campus, the Malcolm X Lounge which can be found in 106 Hartley Hall.

The Columbia University Orchestra was founded by composer Edward MacDowell in 1896, and is the oldest continually operating university orchestra in the United States. Undergraduate student composers at Columbia may choose to become involved with Columbia New Music, which sponsors concerts of music written by undergraduate students from all of Columbia's schools.

Columbia Community Outreach (CCO) is a student organized, student run service day that promotes community service on campus. Founded in 1997, CCO is a community service initiative that seeks to bring together the Columbia University community, raise awareness of opportunities for long-term service and to form mutually beneficial relationships with Columbia's neighboring communities. Every year over 1,000 students, faculty, staff and alumni volunteer for a day alongside community members and non-profit organizations, such as the New York City Parks Department and Habitat for Humanity. Art History Underground, the student club for arts, organizes yearly events such as roundtables, panels and discussions. The first traditional "What is Art History?" roundtable took place in October, 2006 with the support of the Art History Department. The club also has a biannual journal with the same name, whose first issue was printed in late Fall, 2006.

The Columbia Queer Alliance is the central Columbia student organization that represents the lesbian, gay, transgender, and questioning student population. It is the oldest gay student organization in the world, founded as the Student Homophile League in 1966 by students including lifelong activist Stephen Donaldson.

Conversio Virium is the college's student-run BDSM education and discussion group, providing Columbia students with a safe, confidential space to discuss BDSM activities and interests. It is the oldest still-running University group of its kind, recently celebrating its ten-year anniversary.

Columbia's Bhangra team "cuBhangra" is one of the most energetic and entertaining college, co-ed bhangra teams in the nation. Established in 2002, it has already secured placings at various bhangra competitions in the states and enjoys performing around New York City and in various on-campus performances.

Columbia University campus military groups include the U.S. Military Veterans of Columbia University and Advocates for Columbia ROTC In the 2005-06 academic year, the Columbia Military Society, Columbia's student group for ROTC cadets and Marine officer candidates, was renamed the Hamilton Society for "students who aspire to serve their nation through the military in the tradition of Alexander Hamilton".

There are a number of performing arts groups at Columbia dedicated to producing student theater, including King's Crown Shakespeare Troupe (KCST), Columbia Musical Theater Society (CMTS), New and Original Material Authored by Students (NOMADS), Columbia University Performing Arts League (CUPAL), Black Theatre Ensemble (BTE), sketch comedy group Chowdah, Columbia University Players, and improvisational troupes Fruit Paunch and Sweeps.

The Columbia University Muslim Students Association is one of the oldest and most active Muslim Students Associations in the country.

The largest undergraduate club on campus is the Columbia University College Democrats, who won College Democrats of America's Chapter of the Year award for the 2006-2007 school year.

Athletics

A member institution of the National Collegiate Athletic Association, Columbia fields varsity teams in 29 sports. The football Lions play home games at the 17,000-seat Lawrence A. Wien Stadium at Baker Field. One hundred blocks north of the main campus at Morningside Heights, the Baker Athletics Complex also includes facilities for baseball, softball, soccer, lacrosse, field hockey, tennis, track and rowing. The basketball, fencing, swimming & diving, volleyball and wrestling programs are based at the Dodge Physical Fitness Center on the main campus.

The Columbia mascot is a lion named Roar-ee. At football games, the Columbia University Marching Band plays "Roar, Lion, Roar" each time the team scores and "Who Owns New York?" with each first down. At halftime, alumni stand and sing the alma mater, "Sans Souci." Notable among a number of songs commonly played and sung at various events such as commencement and convocation, and athletic games are: Colossus Of Columbia the Columbia University fight song.

The Lions boast a rich athletic tradition. The wrestling team is the oldest in the nation, and the football team was the third to join intercollegiate play. A Columbia crew was the first from outside Britain to win at the Henley Royal Regatta. Former students include baseball Hall of Famers Lou Gehrig and Eddie Collins and football Hall of Famer Sid Luckman.

More recently, Columbia has excelled at archery, cross country, fencing and wrestling. In 2000, Olympic gold medal swimmer Cristina Teuscher became the first Ivy League student to win the Honda-Broderick Cup, awarded to the best collegiate woman athlete in the nation. Other recent Lions include Pro Bowl defensive end Marcellus Wiley, whose success in the NFL is credited with drawing the attention of professional scouts back to the Ivy League. In 2007, the Men's Track Team captured the 4x800 Penn Relay's victory. This was the first time an Ivy League school won this race since 1974.

Columbia became the third school in the United States to play intercollegiate football when it sent a squad to New Brunswick, N.J., in 1870 to play a team from Rutgers. Three years later, Columbia students joined representatives from Princeton, Rutgers and Yale to ratify the first set of rules to govern intercollegiate play.

During the first half of the 20th century, the Lions had consistent success on the gridiron. Under Hall of Fame coach Lou Little, the 1934 squad shut out heavily favored Stanford in the Rose Bowl winning what was the precursor to the national championship. During World War II football players were recruited to move uranium in support of the school's participation in the Manhattan Project. Little’s 1947 edition beat defending national champion Army, then riding a 32-game win streak, in one of the most stunning upsets of the century. Greats of the era included the All-American Sid Luckman, the quarterback who would lead the Chicago Bears to four NFL championships in the 1940s while ushering football into the modern era with the T formation.

Since sharing their only Ivy League title with Harvard in 1961, the football Lions have had three winning seasons (6-3 in 1971, 5-4-1 in 1994 and 8-2 in 1996). The distance of practice facilities at Baker Athletics Complex from the main campus at Morningside Heights, competition for the attention of the student body with all the diversions that Manhattan has to offer, and the lack of a winning tradition sometimes are cited as challenges to recruiting at Columbia. Norries Wilson, a runner-up for national assistant coach of the year while at the University of Connecticut in 2004, is the latest head coach brought in to try to turn the program around. The 2006 squad had a 5-5 record (the program's first .500-or-better season in 10 years), with two victories to close out the year against Cornell and Brown. The Brown game was won on a clutch, game-winning field goal in the waning seconds by Jon Rocholl

The baseball team boasts involvement in the first-ever televised sporting event. On May 17, 1939 fledgling NBC filmed the doubleheader of the Columbia Lions vs. Princeton Tigers at Columbia's Baker Field. Columbia won the 2008 Ivy baseball title.

In basketball, perhaps the greatest player to wear Columbia Blue was All-American Chet Forte, the 1957 national college player of the year. George Gregory, Jr. became the first African-American All-American in 1931. The 1968 Ivy League championship team included future NBA player Jim McMillian.

Controversies and student demonstrations

Nazi Germany

In 1933 the German Ambassador to the United States, Hans Luther, was the featured speaker at the Institute of Arts and Sciences at the Columbia University. When he started to speak a woman in the audience asked him about the burning of the homes of exiled professors. She and two other protesters were forcibly removed by security. Hans Luther's speech stressed Hitler's "peaceful intentions" toward his European neighbors. Afterward, Nicholas Murray Butler, Columbia's president, held a reception in his honor. The head of the institute, Russell Potter, called the protestors "ill-mannered children". Protestors handing out leaflets protesting against Nazi Germany were arrested.

Protests of 1968

Students initiated a major demonstration in 1968 over two major issues. The first was Columbia's proposed gymnasium in neighboring Morningside Park; this was seen by the protesters to be an act of aggression aimed at the black residents of neighboring Harlem. A second issue was the Columbia administration's failure to resign its institutional membership in the Pentagon's weapons research think-tank, the Institute for Defense Analyses (IDA). Students barricaded themselves inside Low Library, Hamilton Hall, and several other university buildings during the protests, and New York City police were called onto the campus to arrest or forcibly remove the students.

Protests against racism and apartheid

Further student protests, including hunger strike and more barricades of Hamilton Hall during the late 1970s and early 1980s, were aimed at convincing the university trustees to divest all of the university's investments in companies that were seen as active or tacit supporters of the apartheid regime in South Africa. A variety of more recent protests, most notably those of Spring 2004 and Spring 2006, have primarily concerned perceived racism on campus.

Antiwar protests

In addition to the 1968 protests (see above), tangentially related to the Vietnam War, students and faculty have protested U.S. involvement in various other conflicts. Most recently and controversially, at a faculty sit-in protest of the Iraq War, Professor Nicholas de Genova praised "fragging" (soldiers murdering fellow soldiers) and called for U.S. troops to experience "a million Mogadishus," a reference to the casualties U.S. troops suffered in the Battle of Mogadishu in 1993. The U.S. Military Veterans of Columbia University, a Columbia University student-veterans group, issued this letter in response to Professor De Genova's remarks.

Ad Hoc Grievance Committee (Allegations of faculty intimidation of Jewish students)

In 2004 Columbia drew nationwide attention when allegations were made that some professors intimidated and harassed students with pro-Israel views. Nat Hentoff of the Village Voice accused Columbia of sweeping a serious problem under the carpet.

Minuteman protest

On October 4, 2006, a group of left wing students disrupted a speech by Jim Gilchrist, the founder of the Minuteman Project, a group that patrols the border between the United States and Mexico, who had been invited to campus by the Columbia College Republicans. Two student members of the International Socialist Organization stepped on to the stage and unfurled a banner that stated, in Spanish, English, and Arabic, "No human being is illegal", a criticism of the Minuteman Project's attitude toward illegal immigrants. This action incited other students to rush the stage, including members of the school's Chicano Caucus. A brawl between protesters and supporters of the Minuteman project ensued. Gilchrist and Marvin Stewart, another Minuteman member, were escorted away after the protesters took to the stage.

The protesters were initially accused of attacking the Minutemen. However, Fox News's Alan Colmes suggests that based on video evidence, a Minuteman initiated violence with a punch.

The students' actions were condemned as violations of the Minuteman Project's right to free speech by New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, University President Lee Bollinger, and media figures from across the country. Representatives of the protesters claimed they were fighting hatred, not free speech.

The University responded with disciplinary action, charging eight students with violating University rules. Three Latino students received harsher punishments than the other students, resulting in some accusations of unfairness and racism at the University.

Mahmoud Ahmadinejad visit and speech controversy

On September 24, 2007, Columbia and its School of International and Public Affairs invited Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad to speak on campus as part of Columbia University's World Leaders Forum. The invitation was criticized by some, applauded by others.

In his introductory speech, University President Lee Bollinger called Ahmadinejad a "petty and cruel dictator" and asked him questions about previous remarks concerning the Holocaust and his record on human rights. Ahmadinejad responded to Bollinger's remarks by saying:

"In Iran, tradition requires when you invite a person to be a speaker, we actually respect our students enough to allow them to make their own judgment, and don't think it's necessary before the speech is even given to come in with a series of complaints to provide vaccination to the students and faculty."
During his speech, Ahmadinejad criticized Israel's policies towards the Palestinians, called for research on the historical accuracy of Holocaust (though he admitted that the Holocaust did occur), expressed his sympathy for the families of the victims of 9/11 attacks, raised questions as to who initiated the attacks, expressed the self-determination of Iran's nuclear power program, criticizing the United Nation's policy of sanctions on his country, and criticized U.S. policy in the Middle East. In response to a question about Iran's treatment of women and homosexuals, he asserted that women are respected in Iran, and denied that there are any homosexuals in Iran.

Tenure Battles

Political battles over tenure decisions drew national attention, particularly to Joseph Massad and Nadia Abu El Haj.

ROTC ban

Since 1969, the university has not allowed the United States Department of Defense (DoD) to establish and maintain Reserve Officers' Training Corps (ROTC) programs at the campus. The ban was undertaken as an expression of opposition to the war in Vietnam. At a forum at the university during the 2008 presidential election campaign, both John McCain and Barack Obama gave statements appearing to support repealing the ban. In response to the candidates' statements, students have announced plans for a student vote on lifting the ban.

Responding to the students' announcement, Columbia's president, Lee Bollinger sent an email to Columbia faculty and administrators stating that the university's opposition to ROTC was because ROTC is available at other nearby universities and because of opposition to what he described as the DoD's "Don't ask, don't tell" policy. William McGurn, from the Wall Street Journal, in response to Bollinger's letter, has pointed out that United States Navy ROTC is not available at other universities near Columbia and the "Don't ask, don't tell" policy is mandated by the United States Congress, not the DoD. The last time a student vote on lifting the ban on ROTC was held in April 2003, 65% of students voted to lift the ban, although only 1,000 of the 20,000 students of the university participated in the poll.

Traditions

For a more comprehensive list see: Columbia traditions

Orgo Night

On the day before the Organic Chemistry exam—which is often on the first day of finals—at precisely the stroke of midnight, the Columbia University Marching Band occupies Butler Library to distract diligent students from studying. After a half-hour of campus-interest jokes, the procession then moves out to the lawn in front of Hartley, Wallach and John Jay residence halls to entertain the residents there. The band then plays at various other locations around Morningside Heights, including the residential quadrangle of Barnard College, where students of the all-women's school, in mock-consternation, rain trash - including notes and course packets - and water balloons upon them from their dormitories above. The band tends to close their Orgo Night performances before Furnald Hall, known among students as the more studious and reportedly "anti-social" residence hall, where the underclassmen in the marching band serenade the seniors with an entertaining, though vulgar, mock-hymn to Columbia, composed of quips that poke fun at the various stereotypes about the Columbia student body.

Tree-Lighting and Yule Log ceremonies

The campus Tree-Lighting Ceremony is a relatively new tradition at Columbia, inaugurated in 1998. It celebrates the illumination of the medium-sized trees lining College Walk in front of Kent and Hamilton Halls on the east end and Dodge and Journalism Halls on the west, just before finals week in early December. The lights remain on until February 28. Students meet at the sun-dial for free hot chocolate, performances by various a cappella groups, and speeches by the university president and a guest.

Immediately following the College Walk festivities is one of Columbia's older holiday traditions, the lighting of the Yule Log. The ceremony dates to a period prior to the Revolutionary War, but lapsed before being revived by University President Nicholas Murray Butler in the early 20th century. A troop of students dressed in Continental Army soldiers carry the eponymous log from the sun-dial to the lounge of John Jay Hall, where it is lit amid the singing of seasonal carols. The ceremony is accompanied by a reading of A Visit From St. Nicholas by Clement Clarke Moore (Columbia College class of 1798) and Yes, Virginia, There is a Santa Claus by Francis Pharcellus Church (Class of 1859).

The Varsity Show

An annual musical written by and for students, this is one of Columbia's oldest traditions. Past writers and directors have included Columbians Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein, Lorenz Hart, I.A.L. Diamond, and Herman Wouk. The show has one of the largest operating budgets of all university events.

Sustainability

Columbia has an Office of Environmental Stewardship that initiates, coordinates and implements practical programs to reduce the university’s environmental footprint. The newly formed Environmental Stewardship Advisory Committee, composed of students, university administrators and faculty, will establish principles and make recommendations about environmental stewardship and sustainability for Columbia. Columbia is one of nine New York City universities that accepted Mayor Bloomberg’s challenge to reduce greenhouse emissions 30% by 2017. Columbia scored a respectable “B+” on the Sustainable Endowments Institute’s 2008 College Sustainability Report Card.

Inventions, discoveries and patents

Columbia is home to numerous scientific and technological breakthroughs. It was the first North American site where the Uranium atom was split. It was the birthplace of FM radio and the laser. The MPEG-2 algorithm of transmitting high quality audio and video over limited bandwidth was developed by Dimitris Anastassiou, a Columbia professor of electrical engineering. Biologist Martin Chalfie was the first to introduce the use of Green Fluorescent Protein (GFP) in labelling cells in intact organisms. Other inventions and products related to Columbia include Sequential Lateral Solidifcation (SLS) technology for making LCDs, System Management Arts (SMARTS), Session Initiation Protocol (SIP) (which is used for audio, video, chat, instant messaging and whiteboarding), pharmacopeia, Macromodel (software for computational chemistry), a new and better recipe for glass concrete, Blue LEDs, Beamprop (used in photonics), among others.

Some of the greatest contributions by Columbia scientists have been in the health sciences field, including about 175 new inventions each year. More than 30 pharmaceutical products based on discoveries and inventions made at Columbia are on the market today. These include Remicade (for arthritis), Reopro (for blood clot complications), Xalatan (for glaucoma), Benefix, Latanoprost (a glaucoma treatment), shoulder prosthesis, homocysteine (testing for cardiovascular disease), and Zolinza (for cancer therapy).

Columbia ranks among the top U.S. schools in revenues earned from patents and license agreements on its inventions and discoveries. Its Science and Technology Ventures currently manages some 600 patents and more than 250 active license agreements. Patent-related deals earned Columbia more than $230 million in the 2006 fiscal year, according to the university. In 2004, Columbia made $178 million (compared to $24 million made by Harvard).

Awards and honors

As of October, 2008, 77Columbia University affiliates have been honored with Nobel Prizes for their work in physics, chemistry, medicine, literature, peace, and economics. In the last 12 years (1996-2008) 17 Columbia affiliates have won Nobel Prizes, of which 9 are current faculty members. (Economics-6, Physiology/Medicine-4, Physics-2, Chemistry-3, Literature-1,Peace-1)

Columbia faculty awarded the Nobel Prize in the last 12 years (1996-2008):

Faculty Affiliation at Columbia Nobel Prize
1.Martin Chalfie Dept. of Biological Sciences Chemistry, 2008
2.Orhan Pamuk Dept.of Middle East Languages & Cultures Literature, 2006
3.Edmund Phelps Dept. of Economics Economics, 2006
4.Richard Axel Center for Neurobiology & Behavior, A.B.1967 Physiology/Medicine, 2004
5.Joseph Stiglitz Dept. of Economics Economics, 2001
6.Eric Kandel Center for Neurobiology & Behavior Physiology/Medicine, 2000
7.Robert Mundell Dept. of Economics Economics, 1999
8.Horst Ludwig Störmer Dept. of Physics Physics, 1998
9.William Vickrey Dept. of Economics, M.A.1937,PhD1948 Economics, 1996

Columbia affiliates awarded the Nobel Prize in the last 10 years (1996-2008):

Name Affiliation at Columbia Nobel Prize
10.Al Gore Jounalism School Peace, 2007
11.John Mather Goddard Institute for Space Studies Physics, 2006
12.Robert Grubbs PhD 1968 Chemistry, 2005
13.Linda Buck Research Scientist 1980-91 Physiology/Medicine, 2004
14.William Standish Knowles PhD 1942 Chemistry, 2001
15.James Heckman Faculty 1970-74 Economics, 2000
16.Louis Ignarro B.S. 1962 Physiology/Medicine, 1998
17.Robert Merton B.S. 1966 Economics, 1997

Other awards/honors won by current faculty include:

*National Academy of Sciences: 41
*National Academy of Engineering: 20
*Institute of Medicine of the National Academies: 38

Presidents

President Birth Year–Death Year Years as President Name of Institution; Notes
1 Samuel Johnson (1696–1772) (1754–1763) King's College
2 Myles Cooper (1735–1785) (1763–1775) King's College
2.1 Benjamin Moore (1748–1816) (1775–1776) King's College; acting
2.2 George Clinton (1739–1812) (1784–1787) Columbia College "in the State of New York"; Chancellor (Regents government)
3 William Samuel Johnson (1727–1819) (1787–1800) Columbia College "in the City of New York" (Trustees government)
4 Charles Henry Wharton (1748–1833) (1801–1801) Columbia College
5 Benjamin Moore (1748–1816) (1801–1810) Columbia College
6 William Harris (1765–1829) (1811–1829) Columbia College; shares authority with Provost John Mitchell Mason until 1816
7 William Alexander Duer (1780–1858) (1829–1842) Columbia College
8 Nathaniel Fish Moore (1782–1872) (1842–1849) Columbia College
9 Charles King (1789–1867) (1849–1863) Columbia College; presides over move to Madison Avenue campus
10 Frederick Augustus Porter Barnard (1809–1889) (1864–1889) Columbia College
11 Seth Low (1850–1916) (1890–1901) Columbia College; presides over move to Morningside Heights campus; name changes to "Columbia University in the City of New York"
12 Nicholas Murray Butler (1862–1947) (1902–1945) Columbia University
12.1 Frank D. Fackenthal (1883–1968) (1945–1948) Columbia University (acting)
13 Dwight D. Eisenhower (1890–1969) (1948–1953) Columbia University; on leave while Supreme Commander of NATO
14 Grayson L. Kirk (1903–1997) (1953–1968) Columbia University; resigned after 1968 protests
15 Andrew W. Cordier (1901–1975) (1969–1970) Columbia University
16 William J. McGill (1922–1997) (1970–1980) Columbia University
17 Michael I. Sovern (1931– ) (1980–1993) Columbia University
18 George Erik Rupp (1942– ) (1993–2002) Columbia University
19 Lee C. Bollinger (1947– ) (2002– ) Columbia University

Notable Columbians

Alumni and attenders

Two former Presidents of the United States, the Roosevelts, had attended Columbia (neither finished). Six Justices of the Supreme Court of the United States and 39 Nobel Prize winners have obtained degrees from Columbia. Today, three United States Senators and 16 current Chief Executives of Fortune 500 companies hold Columbia degrees, as do three of the 25 richest Americans.

Attendees of King's College, Columbia's predecessor, included Founding Fathers Alexander Hamilton, John Jay, Robert R. Livingston, and Gouverneur Morris. U.S. Supreme Court Chief Justices Harlan Fiske Stone, Charles Evans Hughes and Associate Justice Benjamin Cardozo, as well as former US Presidents Theodore Roosevelt and Franklin Delano Roosevelt, were all educated at the law school. Former U.S. President Dwight D. Eisenhower served as President of the University. Other significant figures in American history to attend the university were John L. O'Sullivan, the journalist who coined the phrase "manifest destiny," Alfred Thayer Mahan, the geostrategist who wrote on the significance of sea power, and progressive intellectual Randolph Bourne. Former Secretary of State Alexander Haig studied at Columbia Business School between 1954 and 1955. Wellington Koo, a Chinese diplomat who argued passionately against Japanese and Western imperialism in Asia at the Paris Peace Conference, is a graduate, having honed his debating skills in Columbia's Philolexian Society, as is Dr. Bhimrao Ambedkar, one of the founding fathers of India and chief architect of its constitution. Local politicians have been no less represented at Columbia, including Seth Low, who served as both President of the University and Mayor of the City of New York, and New York governors Thomas Dewey, also an unsuccessful US presidential candidate, DeWitt Clinton, who presided over the construction of the Erie Canal, Hamilton Fish, later to become US Secretary of State, and Daniel D. Tompkins, who also served as a Vice President of the United States.

Toomas Hendrik Ilves, the President of Estonia, received his BA in psychology at Columbia in 1976. Philip Gunawardena, a Sri Lankan Revolutionary and Indian Freedom Fighter, who was later to be known as "The Father of Socialism in Sri Lanka", joined Columbia in 1925 for his post-graduate studies. He was later to become a Cabinet Minister, instituting far-reaching changes in Sri Lanka's agrarian structure. General, historian, and author John Watts de Peyster, who was influential in the modernization of the New York National Guard, New York Police Department, and the Fire Department of New York, attended Columbia College and later received a M.A. degree.

More recent political figures educated at Columbia include current U.S. Senators Barack Obama of Illinois, Judd Gregg of New Hampshire and Frank Lautenberg of New Jersey, Governor of New York David Paterson and his Chief of Staff Charles J. O'Byrne, former U.S. Secretary of State Madeleine Albright, UN weapons inspector Hans Blix, former UN Secretary General Boutros Boutros-Ghali, conservative commentators Patrick J. Buchanan and Norman Podhoretz, U.S. Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, former chairman of the US Federal Reserve Bank Alan Greenspan, George Stephanopoulos, Senior Advisor to former US President Bill Clinton, George Pataki, the former governor of New York State, and Mikhail Saakashvili, the current President of the country of Georgia. Louisiana Lieutenant Governor (1956–1960) Lether Frazar, who was president of two universities in his state, obtained his Ph.D. from Columbia in 1942. Warlick Carr, a prominent attorney in Lubbock attended Columbia for a year before transferring to the University of Texas at Austin.

Scientists Stephen Jay Gould, Robert Millikan and Michael Pupin, cultural historian Jacques Barzun, literary critic Lionel Trilling, sociologists Immanuel Wallerstein and Seymour Martin Lipset, behavioral psychologist Charles Ferster, poet-professor Mark Van Doren, philosophers Irwin Edman and Robert Nozick, and economists Milton Friedman, Former Afghan Finance Minister Ashraf Ghani, Daniel C. Kurtzer, and communications economist Harvey J. Levin all obtained degrees from Columbia.

In culture and the arts, Rodgers and Hammerstein, Lorenz Hart, screenwriters Sidney Buchman and I.A.L. Diamond, critic and biographer Tim Page, musician Art Garfunkel, and children's songwriter Bobby Susser, are all among Columbia's alumni. The poets Langston Hughes, Federico García Lorca, Joyce Kilmer and John Berryman; the writers Eudora Welty, Isaac Asimov, J. D. Salinger, Upton Sinclair, Jack Kerouac, Allen Ginsberg, Phyllis Haislip, Roger Zelazny, Herman Wouk, Hunter S. Thompson, and Paul Auster; playwrights Tony Kushner and Eulalie Spence; the architects Robert A. M. Stern, Ricardo Scofidio, Peter Eisenman and Christine Wang; the composer Béla Bartók; and film director and screenwriter Cetywa Powell also attended the university. Trappist monk, author, and humanist Thomas Merton is an alumnus both as an undergraduate and graduate student, and converted to Catholicism while attending. Urban theorist and cultural critic Jane Jacobs spent time at the School of General Studies, and educator Elisabeth Irwin received her M.A. there in 1923. Vampire Weekend band members Ezra Koenig, Rostam Batmanglij, Chris Tomson, and Chris Baio graduated from the College in 2006 and 2007. Grammy Award-winning R&B singers Lauryn Hill and Alicia Keys attended Columbia, but both left after one year. Singer and songwriter Sean Lennon, son of John Lennon and Yoko Ono, as well as Japanese-American pop-star Utada Hikaru and Korean-American pop-star Lena Park briefly attended the College before leaving to pursue their singing careers. Allison Starling and Remy Zaken, both Broadway actresses, are currently attending the College. Young adult author Maureen Johnson graduated from Columbia with an M.F.A. in writing and theatrical dramaturgy.

Baseball legends Lou Gehrig, Mo Berg (of the biography The Catcher Was a Spy) and Sandy Koufax, along with football quarterback Sid Luckman and sportscaster Roone Arledge, are alumni.

Celebrities who graduated from Columbia include the actors Maggie Gyllenhaal, Julia Stiles, Amanda Peet, Famke Janssen, Matthew Fox, Brian Dennehy, Jesse Bradford, Ben Stein, George Segal, Rider Strong and Mario Van Peebles. Anna Paquin, who won an Oscar for her performance in the The Piano, attended Columbia, as did Academy Award-nominated actor Casey Affleck. Academy Award-winning actor James Cagney, and Academy Award-nominated actors Ed Harris and Jake Gyllenhaal attended Columbia for a time before leaving to pursue their acting careers. Radio personality Tom Griswold of the nationally syndicated morning radio show The Bob and Tom Show graduated from Columbia. Television talk show host Sally Jesse Raphael is a graduate. Claire-Aimee "Claire" Unabia from America's Next Top Model, Cycle 10 is a graduate of the School of General Studies.

Faculty and affiliates

Jacques Barzun, Lionel Trilling, and Mark Van Doren were legendary Columbia faculty members as well as graduates, teaching alongside such luminaries as the philosopher John Dewey, American historians Richard Hofstadter, John A. Garraty, Charles Beard and Reinhard H Luthin, educator George Counts, sociologists Daniel Bell, C. Wright Mills, Robert K. Merton, and Paul Lazarsfeld, and art historian Meyer Schapiro. The history of the discipline of anthropology practically begins at Columbia with Franz Boas. Margaret Mead, a Barnard College alumna, along with Columbia graduate Ruth Benedict, continued this tradition by bringing the discipline into the spotlight. Nuclear physicists Enrico Fermi, John R. Dunning, I. I. Rabi, and Polykarp Kusch helped develop the Manhattan Project at the university, and pioneering geophysicist Maurice Ewing made great strides in the understanding of plate tectonics. Thomas Hunt Morgan discovered the chromosomal basis for genetic inheritance at his famous "fly room" at the university, laying the foundation for modern genetics. Philosopher Hannah Arendt was a visiting professor in the 1960s. Noted Chinese author and illustrator, Chiang Yee taught Chinese from 1955 to 1977, and retired as Emeritus Professor of Chinese. In 1978 Frank Daniel began his Columbia teaching career; he is most notable for his development of the sequence paradigm of screenwriting.

Melvil Dewey, creator of the Dewey Decimal Classification, was librarian of the University and also founded the first library school in the US at Columbia.

More recently, architects Bernard Tschumi, Santiago Calatrava and Frank Gehry have taught at the school. The postcolonial scholar Edward Said taught at Columbia, where he spent virtually the entirety of his academic career, until his death in 2003.

Today, celebrated faculty members include string-theory expert Brian Greene, Ricci flow inventor Richard Hamilton, American historian Eric Foner, Middle Eastern studies expert Richard Bulliet, Eric Kandel, a Nobel prize winner who conducted fundamental research in neuroscience, New York City historian Kenneth T. Jackson, Je Tsong Khapa Professor of Indo-Tibetan Buddhist Studies Robert Thurman, composers Tristan Murail, Fred Lerdahl and George Lewis, literary theorist Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak, philosopher Philip Kitcher, British historian Simon Schama, art historian Rosalind Krauss, director Mira Nair, East Asian studies expert William Theodore de Bary, scientist, critic, writer and physician Oliver Sacks, Turkish author and Nobel prize winner Orhan Pamuk, and economists Jeffrey Sachs, Jagdish Bhagwati, Joseph Stiglitz, Edmund Phelps, Xavier Sala-i-Martin, and Robert Mundell.

In November and December, 2006, Václav Havel spent eight weeks as an artist-in-residence at Columbia University. Havel at Columbia

Sunil Gulati, President of US Soccer, is a professor of Economics at the University.

Fictitious Columbians

In Spider-Man films directed by Sam Raimi, Peter Parker attains his powers after being bitten by a radioactive spider at a Columbia laboratory, and later attends the school. The Marvel Comics superhero Daredevil was valedictorian of his class at Columbia Law School. Willie Keith, the protagonist in Herman Wouk's The Caine Mutiny, is a Columbia student when he signs up for the Navy at the beginning of World War II; Wouk specifically refers to the campus, including buildings such as Furnald Hall. Law & Order prosecutor Jamie Ross (later a judge on Law & Order: Trial by Jury) attended Columbia Law. Meadow Soprano, of the television series The Sopranos, attends Columbia. Michael Moscovitz, a character in the The Princess Diaries series by Meg Cabot, also attends Columbia University. On the NBC sitcom Will & Grace, both main characters, Will Truman and Grace Adler, played by Eric McCormack and Debra Messing, respectively, were Columbia graduates. Jack Shephard (Matthew Fox) from ABC's Lost graduated from Columbia University Medical Center. Jessie Spano from Saved by the Bell attended Columbia University in the show's spin-off. Jessica Darling, the protagonist of Megan McCafferty's Sloppy Firsts, Second Helpings, and Charmed Thirds, attends Columbia. Dr. Joel Fleishman (Rob Morrow) on the television series Northern Exposure was a graduate of Columbia. Valerie Tyler in the TV show What I Like About You is a Columbia graduate. Carol Seaver from the family sitcom Growing Pains (Tracey Gold) also attended the university. In How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days, Andie Anderson (Kate Hudson) graduated from Columbia Journalism. In the film I Think I Love My Wife, Richard Cooper (Chris Rock) held an M.B.A. degree from Columbia (An M.B.A. diploma from Columbia can be seen hanging on the wall in the character's office). Marshall Eriksen of How I Met Your Mother is a Columbia Law school graduate. Dr. James Womack (Nicolas Cage) in the movie "The Rock" holds a BA from Columbia. In addition, the television comedy series (Seinfeld) was fictionally filmed near the Columbia campus, as the famous Seinfeld diner "Monk's" is in fact Tom's Restaurant on Broadway at 112th Street. Similarly, the pop song (Tom's Diner) by Columbia alum (Suzanne Vega)is also set in Tom's Restaurant. In Siri Hustvedt's 2008 novel, the blindfold, the heroine is a grad student at Columbia. Mara Waters (the au pairs (Melisssa de la Cruz novel))decided to attend Columbia University rather than Dartmouth.

In film, television, and the arts

Movies featuring scenes shot on the Morningside campus include:

Movies or shows with significant portrayals of Columbia alumni or students:

Currently shooting on or near the University's campus:

  • What I Like About You- Val's character is an alumna of Columbia, and Holly goes for an interview at the campus, but then decided the college isn't right for her.
  • 7th Heaven - Matt and Sarah (Glass) Camden were students here until they graduated just after the 10th season finale.

Recording artist Nellie McKay has released a song on her second album Pretty Little Head, entitled "Columbia Is Bleeding", discusses alleged animal abuse as part of the practice of animal testing at Columbia University.

In geography

The Columbia Glacier, one of the largest in Alaska's College Fjord, is named after the university, where it sits among other glaciers named for the Ivy League and Seven Sisters schools. Mount Columbia in the Collegiate Peaks Wilderness of Colorado also takes its name from the university and is situated among peaks named for Harvard, Yale, Princeton, and Oxford.

See also

References

Further reading

  • Robert A. McCaughey: Stand, Columbia: A History of Columbia University in the City of New York, 1754-2004, Columbia University Press, 2003, ISBN 0231130082
  • Living Legacies at Columbia, ed. by Wm Theodore De Bary, Columbia University Press, 2006, ISBN 0231138849

External links

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