#9, overall score 76.17/100

Fun Fact:

The Columbia Queer Alliance is the oldest LGBTQ student organization in the world. It was founded as the Student Homophile League in 1966.

Why should Jewish students attend Columbia? Jewish life at Columbia University is thriving. The Kraft Center for Jewish Student Life is a seven-story building on 115th Street that is home to Columbia/Barnard Hillel. More than 963 students from diverse backgrounds participated in Hillel last academic year. Students can explore Judaism through classes, Greek life, travel or through one of many activities that Hillel offers daily. Columbia/Barnard Hillel takes advantage of all that New York has to offer, giving students the opportunity to visit museums, attend plays and to learn with some of the great Jewish thinkers who work in or visit NYC. —- Brian Cohen, executive director, Columbia/Barnard Hillel

Columbia/Barnard has everything you could ask for in terms of Jewish life infrastructure: a beautiful Hillel building, many religious, educational, and social student groups, and very good kosher food offerings. —- Rabbi Noam & Shiffy Friedman, OU-JLIC educators

ACADEMICS Score: 30/30

  • Score: 30/30
  • Acceptance rate: 6%
  • Student/faculty ratio: 6:1
  • Jewish Studies major: Yes
  • Israel Studies major: No, but has Israel Studies center


  • Tuition: $55,056
  • Room & board costs: $13,244
  • Average annual scholarship/grant package: $55,567


  • Location: New York, N.Y.
  • Region: Mid-Atlantic
  • Public/Private: Private
  • Undergraduate enrollment: 6,102
  • Jewish undergraduate enrollment: 1,500
  • Jewish population share: 25%
  • Student origin: 24% in-state/76% out-of-state
  • NCAA Division: I
  • NCAA team: Lions
  • Ultimate Frisbee teams: Uptown Local, PANDEMIC

ISRAEL Score: 16.83/20

JEWISH LIFE Score: 29.33/40

  • Score: 29.33/40
  • Hillel: Kraft Center for Jewish Student Life
  • Chabad: Chabad at Columbia University
  • OU-JLIC: Yes
  • Meor: No
  • Jewish fraternities: AEPi, ZBT
  • Jewish sororities: SDT
  • Jewish dorm: Beit Ephraim Food Co-op
  • Anti-Semitic incidents in 2016: 2
  • Can you get kosher food on the school meal plan? Yes
  • Active Hillel clubs: 22
  • Hillel Friday night services: 4
  • Average Shabbat attendance – Hillel: 350
  • Synagogues within 10 miles: 137 (95 Orthodox, 20 Conservative, 22 Reform)
  • Eruv: Yes
  • Most famous Jewish alumnus: Oscar Hammerstein
  • Most unique/noteworthy Hillel club: Nefesh, a mental health awareness group, has raised awareness about mental health issues through several major events.
  • Where do Jewish students come from? All over the world.
  • Kosher food details: There are multiple kosher meal plan options for Columbia students, including a dairy kosher cafe in the Kraft Center. Food can also be purchased at off-campus markets.

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