Columbia University

Originally established in 1754 as King’s College by a British royal charter, Columbia University, one of our country’s oldest and most prestigious schools, is a private Ivy League University located in Upper Manhattan. The Morningside heights campus begins at Broadway and 116th Street and is home to three undergraduate schools—Columbia College, The School of General Studies and The Fu Foundation School of Engineering and Applied Science. Enrollment at Columbia is just under 8, 000 for undergrads and just under 19, 000 for grad school.

Visitor Info: Tour Columbia

Stay: A short walk from Columbia, check in to Aloft Harlem, the neighborhoods first boutique hotel. Any hotel in Manhattan is just a short cab or subway ride away, but the Upper West side is definitely most convenient.  Good options include: the Hotel Beacon, Hudson New York, and Courtyard by Marriott Central Park. If you feel like splurging, the 1 Hotel Central Park is beautiful and the  Mandarin Oriental located at the top of the Time Warner Center offers incredible views of Central Park.

Coffee: Depending which end of campus you’re near, student’s favorites are Joe’s in the Northwest Corner building which is ironically on the southeast corner of Broadway (at 120th street) or Oren’s Daily Roast on Broadway between 112 and 113th.

Breakfast: We were told that some of the best chocolate croissants in NYC can be found at The Hungarian Pastry Shop, an old world bakery and café that’s been a Columbia hangout for decades. It’s very New York to find a deli called Nussbaum and Wu, popular in the day for its pressed juices and smoothies, bagels, custom salads and sandwiches. Looking for more of a sit down--order the pancakes at retro, homey diner Kitchenette.

Lunch: More than one student told us we must try the burritos and tacos at tiny, no frills Taqueria y Fonda la Mexicana where everything is made fresh daily. Weather permitting; choose from one of the killer sandwiches at Milano Market and picnic on the quad. Salad lovers will be satisfied at Dig Inn or Sweetgreen.



Casual: One student raved that Community Food and Juice has the best brick chicken in the city serving an eclectic, seasonal menu with plenty of choices for vegetarians ranging from veggie burgers to excellent rice bowls.  (Community is also a great choice for lunch and jammed on the weekends for brunch) In the mood for Asian try trendy Thai Market.


A Step Up: They don’t take reservations at Pisticci’s, an extremely popular Columbia favorite offering solid Italian fare, so expect to wait or go early. Red Rooster, in Harlem, from chef Marcus Samuelsson is a lively, buzzy restaurant that has become a neighborhood fixture. (If you’re in town on a Sunday go for their gospel brunch.) New York has some of the world’s best restaurants, for help trying to decide where to go check the latest restaurant news on Eater or Infatuation.

Local Attractions: Columbia’s campus was designed as an urban academic village by renowned architecture firm McKim, Mead and White. Self-guided architectural walking tours are available to download online here. The Miriam and Ira Wallach Art Gallery on campus is open Wed-Sat from 1p.m to 5 p.m. Close to campus visit Grant’s Tomb, the resting place for President Ulysses grant and his wife Julia. For more detailed guides for NYC by neighborhood click here to see our Daytripper365: Homegrown NY - Weekly NY Itineraries!

— Live From Campus —



The resources available to you are extraordinary, whether at the University or in the city at large. Yes, the workload is extremely challenging, but I believe I am getting an unparalleled education.
— Trisha
Columbia is the most dynamic place on earth. It’s a place of constant energy within a city of constant energy. Columbia is a politically active campus and requires a very independent personality. Do not come to school here if you cannot cultivate your own community and live without cliques.
— Michael






School Colors

White & Columbia Blue

Acceptance Rate

7.4% (2016)

Common Application


Supplement Essays


Early Action/Decision

Early Decision








Admissions Office

1130 Amsterdam Avenue 212 Hamilton Hall, MC 2807
New York, NY 10027

(p) (212) 854-2522
(f) (212) 854-1209

Jessica Marinaccio, Dean of Undergraduate Admissions and Financial Aid

Sports Divisions

NCAA Division I
Ivy League

Greek Life


Noteworthy Alumni

Alexander Hamilton
Barack Obama
Theodore Roosevelt


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