Students enrolled in the School of Professional Studies have access to campus facilities and resources.
Facilities and Resources
The Columbia Arts Initiative offers diverse programs to encourage students, faculty, and staff to experience the creative life of the campus, engage the cultural riches of New York City, and to create art. The Arts Initiative creates and facilitates opportunities for cross-disciplinary exchange and is integral to the fabric of campus life.
The Columbia bookstore is located in Lerner Hall. The bookstore, at 19,000 square feet, is Columbia's largest ever with about three times the pervious space devoted to academic books and supplies. The store entrance is on the east side of Broadway at W. 115th Street. In addition to textbooks for courses in Columbia's undergraduate and graduate professional schools on Morningside Heights, the Columbia University Bookstore carries 65,000 general fiction and non-fiction titles, general interest and specialty periodicals, academic journals, writing, desk, and computer supplies, dormitory necessities, aas well as gifts and insignia items, such as sweatshirts and other clothing items with Columbia logos
Columbia Dining is committed to providing our community of students, faculty, and staff with great food and great service. Student cafeterias are located in many places on campus. You may purchase a meal plan, set up a debit account (also known as “Dining Dollars” and the “Flex Account”), or pay by cash. Review the website above for more information about these options, plan your menu, see what locations are open, track nutrition information, and learn about resources for special diets. Please note that dining halls are not open during the summer term for Summer Sessions students.
Columbia University is committed to serving the needs of students with permanent or temporary disabilities. The Office of Disability Services, a division of Health Services at Columbia, provides a variety of services, programs, and resources to allow students with disabilities full participation in the academic and campus experience. Students must identify their disability and provide current and appropriate medical or diagnostic documentation before any accommodations can be considered. To allow sufficient time for review and implementation of accommodations, students with disabilities are encouraged to contact Disability Services upon acceptance to discuss their specific needs and make arrangements for any necessary academic accommodations.
Students obtain Columbia ID cards in 204 Kent Hall after completing the registration process. ID cards are required for use of the libraries and facilities of the University and may be needed for evening entrance to some campus buildings. Columbia University ID cards also provide free admittance to many museums in New York City and discounts on purchases in many local stores.
An official Columbia University email account is provided to each student so that the University and school can send official communications to the student's University address. A Columbia email account also allows access to the full resources of the Registrar and Student Financial Services via Student Services Online. Student account information, including monthly billing statements, is only available online through a student's University email account. Columbia does not send out paper statements of account.
Students are required to activate their CU email accounts before their first registration and to check their email regularly.
Health Services at Columbia offers a comprehensive range of routine medical care, self-care options, individual and group counseling, health education, nutritional support, and extensive outreach on issues pertinent to the well-being of students. Most services are offered without an additional charge to students who have paid the Health Service Fee, which is mandatory for all full-time students.
Primary Care, located on the third and fourth floors of John Jay Hall, offers care for illness or injury, wellness programs, immunizations, allergy shots, a travel medicine program, a multidisciplinary eating disorders team, as well as services especially for women, which include well-woman care, contraception, pregnancy and S.T.D. testing, and referral services.
Health Services at Columbia
John Jay Hall, 3rd and 4th Floors
Counseling and Psychological Services
Counseling and Psychological Services (CPS) offers one-to-one counseling in addition to a number of student support groups and workshops.
802 Lerner Hall
Alice! Columbia University’s Health Education Program
Alice!, Columbia University’s Health Education Program, presents a wide range of health education and skill-building programs.
John Jay Hall, 3rd Floor
Gay Health Advocacy Project (GHAP)
The Gay Health Advocacy Project (GHAP) provides support groups and peer counseling for lesbian, bisexual, gay, and transgender students, as well as confidential HIV testing and counseling for the entire community.
John Jay Hall, 3rd Floor
Sexual Violence Prevention and Response Program
The Rape Crisis/Anti-Violence Support Center offers peer counseling and advocacy to survivors of sexual assault, relationship violence, childhood sexual abuse, and sexual harassment.
Alfred Lerner Hall, 8th Floor
Columbia Health provides integrated, accessible services and programs that support the well-being of the campus community and the personal and academic development of students on the Morningside Campus. Columbia Health comprises more than 130 medical providers, dietitians, disability specialists, health educators, therapists, psychiatrists, peer counselors, student personnel, support staff, and administrative professionals. All programs and services provided by Columbia Health adhere to strict standards of confidentiality in compliance with State and Federal laws.
Alice! Health Promotion
Alice! Health Promotion recognizes that health is a vital part of learning and works to create and sustain a healthy campus community in which students can achieve their personal and academic goals. Alice! coordinates Stressbusters, CU Move, and Go Ask Alice!, a leading health question-and-answer Internet resource.
Wien Hall, Main Floor; (212) 854-5453.
Counseling and Psychological Services
Counseling and Psychological Services supports the psychological and emotional well-being of the campus community by providing short-term individual counseling for students, couples counseling for students and their partners, student-life support groups, and medication consultations. Emergency consultations are available to the entire university community.
Alfred Lerner Hall, 8th Floor; (212) 854-2878.
Disability Services facilitates equal access for students with disabilities by coordinating reasonable accommodations and support services, cultivating a campus culture that is sensitive and responsive to the needs of students.
Accommodations are adjustments to policies, practices, and procedures that “level the playing field” for students with disabilities and provide equal access to Columbia’s programs and activities. Examples include the administration of exams, services such as note-taking, sign language interpreters, or assistive technology, and coordination of accessible housing needs. Accommodation plans and services are specific to the disability-related needs of each student and are determined according to documented needs and the student’s program requirements.
Registration includes submission of both the Registration Form and disability documentation. The application and disability documentation guidelines are available online and at the Disability Services office. Students are encouraged to register within the first two weeks of the semester to ensure that reasonable accommodations can be made for that term. Please note that students are not eligible to receive accommodations until the registration process is complete. Disability Services Liaisons are designated faculty or staff from each school, academic program, or campus service who work with Disability Services to coordinate accommodations for students with disabilities.
Contact: telephone: (212) 854-2388 (Voice/TTY); fax: (212) 854-3448; email: disability [[at]] columbia [[dot]] edu; website: http://health.columbia.edu/disability-services.
The Morningside campus office is located on the 7th floor of Lerner Hall, and the Medical Center Campus office is located at 101 Bard Hall.
Medical Services provides comprehensive care for routine, urgent, and chronic medical needs of students. Medical Services also provides sexual health services, reproductive and gynecological services, travel medicine, LGBTQ health care, immunizations, confidential HIV testing, and referrals. Medical Services includes the Travel Medicine Program, Columbia University Emergency Medical Service (CU-EMS), and the Gay Health Advocacy Project (GHAP).
John Jay Hall, 3rd & 4th Floors; (212) 854-7426.
Sexual Violence Response
Sexual Violence Response educates students and administrators about consent and coercion, and promotes community standards for a respectful and safe campus. Through its programs and services, Sexual Violence Response fosters individual and collective action to end sexual and relationship violence. The Rape Crisis/Anti-Violence Support Center provides peer counseling, advocacy, and education to survivors and co-survivors of sexual assault, relationship violence, childhood sexual abuse, and other forms of violence. The Men's Peer Education Program provides educational events, prevention strategies, and leadership training programs to engage men to end sexual and relationship violence.
Sexual Violence Response: Alfred Lerner Hall, 3rd Floor; (212) 854-3500
Rape Crisis/Anti-Violence Support Center: Barnard Campus; (212) 854-HELP
Men’s Peer Education: Alfred Lerner Hall, 3rd Floor; (212) 854-2136
For information on how to report sexual assault, or for the University's Gender-Based Misconduct Policies for Students (http://www.essential-policies.columbia.edu/gender-based-misconduct-policies-students), please contact Student Services for Gender-Based and Sexual Misconduct at (212) 854-1717, mt2738 [[at]] columbia [[dot]] edu, or go to Wien Hall, Suite 108C.
Columbia Health Fee
By paying the Columbia Health Fee, students enroll in the Columbia Health Program, and are granted access to the programs and services provided on campus through the five Columbia Health departments: Medical Services, Counseling and Psychological Services (CPS), Disability Services, Alice!, and Sexual Violence Response. The fee also includes coverage for specific off-campus services.
The Columbia Health Fee is mandatory and automatically billed through the Student Account Statement to all full-time students and to those who elect enrollment in the Columbia Student Medical Insurance Plan (see below). Other students may elect enrollment in the Columbia Health Program. After paying the fee, students pay no additional charges when using services provided on campus, except for immunizations and travel assessments. The fee provides coverage for services from September 1 to August 31 of the following year. Please visit the Columbia Health website to review the full program description and benefits under the Columbia Health Program.
Part-time students who choose not to enroll in the Columbia Health Program are eligible to receive Primary Care services for a fee of $70 per visit. Spouses and partners of Columbia students are not eligible to enroll in the Health Service Program. In urgent situations, spouses and partners may receive care at Primary Care Medical Services for a $70 fee per visit. Health Services at Columbia is unable to provide services to dependent children. For more information on fees, see the Columbia Health website.
Please note that students enrolled in programs on the Morningside Campus and students enrolled in programs at the College of Physicians and Surgeons or the Mailman School of Public Health pay the health service fee and health insurance premiums in effect at their respective campus.
New students must fulfill two immunization requirements at least 30 days prior to registering for classes. Students will not be able to register for their first term of study until the requirements are met, and late submissions will not be expedited.
- Document immunity to measles, mumps, and rubella
- Document that you have either received the meningitis vaccine or that you have declined to receive it
To provide documentation and for more information, see the Columbia Health website.
SPS students have the opportunity to apply for housing through Columbia Residential. The Columbia Residential inventory consists of apartment shares and dormitory-style rooms. There are also a limited number of studio/efficiency, one-bedroom, and two-bedroom units prioritized for couples and families. Most housing is located within walking distance of the campus in the Morningside Heights neighborhood. Students are also housed in Manhattan Valley, just south of Morningside Heights. Additionally, students are housed in Riverdale, Bronx, at The Arbor, which opened in 2008. Shuttle service to and from The Arbor is provided. To review Columbia Residential’s accommodations, please click here.
If you have any questions, please reach out to sps-studentlife [[at]] columbia [[dot]] edu.
SPS Housing Application
A housing application link with log-in information is provided to students upon admission. Students must apply for housing via the housing portal, using the sign-up code below and their PID number:
- Link to Housing Portal
- Fall 2019 Sign-Up Code: lion0203
- The PID Number will start with a “C” followed by 9 digits (Cxxxxxxxxx). You can locate your PID Number via contacting your program’s advisor.
Students seeking housing should complete the application and will be notified if housing is available, or if they have been placed on a waitlist. Students who are offered housing must pay a nonrefundable $1,000 deposit within five business days from the date of the offer in order to secure their housing assignment.
Students are encouraged to review Columbia University Facilities’ How to Apply section for more information about creating a housing account and submitting a housing application.
SPS Housing Agreement & Policies
All SPS students residing in housing are expected to adhere to all UAH policies and procedures. Information on terms of agreement, policies, and procedures can be found on the Columbia Residential website.
SPS reserves the right to fill any vacancies in student rooms when necessary. Whenever possible, the SPS Student Life team will make an effort to consult with current residents in making changes in roommate assignments. Financial Hardship and Other Special Cases
Occasionally students need to move in or out of or transfer within SPS housing due to financial hardship. These cases are handled on a case by case basis, and students are still required to file the necessary paperwork to SPS & UAH.
UAH and SPS Student Life work together to determine appropriate actions for students who are experiencing a hardship.
In rare cases, a student will want to move before the end of their lease term. If the student is in SPS housing, SPS Student Life will need to review the request. If the request is approved by SPS Student Life, then SPS Student Life can request that the student be allowed to move (assuming they filed a vacancy notice and followed procedure) without penalty, and having their rent prorated to the day they leave. UAH will have the final say if requests are allowed.
Vacating Your Unit
If a student intends to vacate their housing assignment, or is graduating, they must follow the below steps at least 30 days prior to the planned vacancy date.
- Fill out the SPS Housing Vacancy Form by clicking here.
- Submit your official notice of vacancy to UAH. A notice of vacancy may be submitted via My Housing Portal. Select the "Moving out" tab.
For those residing in SPS Housing, a space is considered vacated only if all personal items are removed from the unit, the unit is reasonably clean, and keys are returned to staff. An email will be sent, upon receiving the key, notifying the student that the key has been successfully returned.
If you are a current student planning to return to housing the following semester and you would like to store some items over the summer, please read here for more information.
Billing & Damages
After a student vacates, the room will be inspected for damages beyond normal wear and tear. The cost of repairing any such damages or replacing any missing appliances or furniture will be deducted from their $1000 pre-payment deposit.
SPS Students live in units that are billed by term
Students who live in units billed by term, like the International House, will not receive a refund of their pre-payment deposit, as this was applied to their Student Financial Services (SFS) account shortly after the contract was originally signed.
Columbia’s Off-Campus Housing Assistance Office
Columbia’s Off-Campus Housing Assistance (OCHA) office maintains an online database of available apartments and rooms for rent in the greater New York metropolitan area. A University Network ID (UNI) is required to sign up for OCHA; if you are a new student, activate your UNI account here. If you are a recently admitted student and you do not have a UNI yet, you may create a guest account.
Columbia University has special rate arrangements with preferred hotels. When making reservations at one of these hotels, please specify that you are calling from Columbia University.
Additional Off-Campus Housing Resources
To learn more about off-campus housing in New York City, including short-term housing, long-term housing, and searching for a roommate, the Office of Student life has created a Student Housing Resources PDF.
Columbia assumes no responsibility in connection with any rental agreement or services provided by our cooperating real estate/relocation agencies and recommends that all agreements between tenant and landlord be put in writing. Columbia expressly disclaims any and all responsibility for any problems that may arise with regard to such property, rental unit, or roommate posting or with regard to disputes between landlords and tenants, or between roommates, concerning such property or rental units. All prospective tenants are encouraged to exercise their own good judgment when evaluating a prospective rental unit, landlord or roommate.
The ISSO offers many services for international students as well as American citizens and permanent residents who have received their education in a foreign country. Services for international students include pre-admission counseling, immigration-related and document services, International Orientation, and social and cultural activities. The ISSO is open year-round, and international students are strongly urged to make use of its services.
The Libraries provide wonderful gathering places to pursue scholarly research, to learn about and use information technology, to write, to study, and to draw on our rich collection of print and electronic resources. At your disposal is a fully integrated research library. Columbia’s Libraries, with over 10 million volumes, over 100,000 current journals and serials, and an extensive collection of electronic resources, manuscripts, rare books, microforms, and other non-print formats, rank as one of the top five academic library systems in the nation.
Columbia's Morningside Heights campus is located at Broadway and 116th Street in Manhattan. Drivers should note that in New York City, right turns at red lights are illegal unless traffic signs state otherwise.
University policy requires all registered full-time students to have acceptable health insurance coverage. Columbia University offers the Columbia Student Medical Insurance Plan, which provides both Gold and Platinum levels of coverage. The Columbia Plan is administered by Aetna Student Health and is underwritten by Aetna. Full-time students and students living in Columbia housing are automatically enrolled in the Gold level of the plan and billed for the insurance premium in addition to the Columbia Health Fee.
Part-time students may elect enrollment in the Columbia Student Medical Insurance Plan. Part-time students who have been insured under the Columbia Student Medical Insurance Plan in previous years and wish to enroll again must re-enroll by the enrollment deadline in order to avoid a break in coverage for conditions that existed in the prior policy years.
For detailed information about medical insurance coverage options and directions for confirming enrollment, upgrading coverage, or requesting a waiver, visit the Columbia Health website.
Early Arrival Coverage
Incoming students whose Columbia Student Medical Insurance Plan will begin on September 1 may choose to purchase the Early Arrival Plan, which provides coverage starting July 1 or August 1. For details, see the "Early Arrival Coverage" section of the Columbia Insurance Plan.
Miller Theater at Columbia University is the leading presenter of new music in New York City and one of the most vital forces nationwide for innovative programming. In partnership with Columbia University School of the Arts, Miller is dedicated to producing and presenting unique events in dance, contemporary and early music, jazz, opera, and performance.
Students may park on the street or use the local parking garages. The 512-520 Garage is located at the corner of 112th Street and Amsterdam Avenue; the Riverside Church Parking Garage is located on 120th Street between Claremont Avenue and Riverside Drive; the GMC Garage is located on 122nd Street between Broadway and Amsterdam (Seminary Row).
The University offers excellent athletic facilities and many programs to help the community stay physically fit. The Dodge Physical Fitness Center, available for use by all students, has basketball courts (also used for badminton, floor hockey, indoor soccer, and volleyball), squash/handball/racquetball courts, tennis courts, a running track, swimming pool, state-of-the-art Fitness Facility, saunas, and dance, fencing, wrestling, and multipurpose activity rooms. Further north, on 218th Street, the Baker Field Athletic Complex plays host to a football stadium, baseball field, soccer stadium, tennis courts, an outdoor track, crew/rowing facilities, and practice fields.
The Office of the University Chaplain is located in the Earl Hall Center and includes the Music at St. Paul’s program, United Campus Ministries, and Community Impact. The mission of the Center is to build community within the University and with its neighbors, while providing students with an opportunity to explore the relationship between faith and learning. The Center is as diverse as the University it serves. It is home to 70 student groups who are recognized by the Student Governing Board. In addition, the United Campus Ministries, which includes denominations of Christian, Jewish, and Islamic practices, is housed in the Center and can provide you with individual counseling, religious and nonreligious group support, referrals, and personal assistance.
At Columbia University, the safety and well-being of our students, faculty, and staff is an important priority. Columbia’s campuses and their environs are safe and have a relatively low crime rate for an urban university.
The University is required by federal law to publish an annual security report containing information with respect to campus security policies and statistics on the incidence of certain crimes on and around our campuses. This information is available at the website for the United States Department of Education; by requesting a copy of the report from: Campus Crime Report, Department of Public Safety, Columbia University, 111 Low Library, Mail Code 4301, 535 West 116th Street, New York, NY 10027; or on the Public Safety Web site.
The architecturally renowned Alfred Lerner Hall Student Center (known to students as “Lerner”) contains study spaces and lounges, including Café 212, Café East, and Ferris Booth Commons. It is also the home of Columbia University Arts Initiative and the Columbia University Bookstore.
This policy online reference is intended to provide information for the guidance of the Columbia community. The Essential Policies website contains valuable information to help students, faculty, and staff understand some of the policies and regulations of the University. These policies were formerly published in the appendix of FACETS (Facts About Columbia Essential to Students). Policies pertain to campus safety (including harassment and discrimination), the confidentiality of student records, drug and alcohol use, student leaves, and political activity, as well as others. This is a useful reference to several important policies Columbia University maintains, but it is not exhaustive.