Location
New York, NY
Undergrads
7,236
Tuition
$47,246
Admission Difficulty
Very Hard
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Reviews 1087 total reviews with an average rating of 3.6

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Niche User

Computers: Here, I would say that it depends on your major. The labs are big, and there is usually space, but if you are going to do English or political science where you will have to write a lot of papers, you should bring your own.

1 person found this useful Report
Niche User

Computers: Having not owned a computer for my first year at Columbia, I can say with some authority, bring or buy a computer, even if it's old. The worst thing is having to run to campus at 4 a.m. to finish a paper in a lab, then realizing that others procrastinated as much as you did, and the room is packed.

1 person found this useful Report
Niche User

Computers: I think it is best to bring a computer, but computer labs in less populated dorms are well-kept secrets, and they're virtually always available.

Niche User

Computers: The computer labs are great, though at times, overcrowded. But most people respect the quiet rule (take all of your cell phone conversations outside), which they do not respect in the library. You definitely need your own computer in order to survive here.

1 person found this useful Report
Niche User

Computers: I'd bring my own computer because it makes life a lot easier. Computer labs are really crowded during exams and midterms, but there are also a bunch of computer labs that students don't generally go to. For example, Mudd is generally emptier than Butler Library.

Niche User

Computers: Computer labs are crowded during the day, but if you don't mind waiting, computer access is not a problem. The limited number of Macs on campus is not good, but the fact that they are not always operational can really be a problem. That said, there are plenty of working PCs. However, the same cannot be said about the campus printers. There are about two printers in each computer lab, and it is rare for both (or even one) to be working properly. Expect long lines for printers.

Niche User

Computers: Finding space in a lab is usually easy, but bring your own computer. I got by without my own printer, but the network printing system isn't always that convenient. The network is fast, but bandwidth restrictions can mess you up for no reason (like if your roommate is on KaZaa all day, your account can suffer).

Niche User

Computers: Having your own computer is a must for convenience and academic sanity. There are plenty of computers available on campus, but the last thing you want to do is put all of your faith in being able to concentrate at the lab while pulling an all-nighter for a paper that's due the next morning.

Niche User

Computers: You definitely should bring your own computer and printer. It's just easier than always having to scout for an open terminal. There are various computer labs on campus, but it's almost always a lot of stress to locate one that's actually available.

Niche User

Computers: The computer labs are good and not always crowded because students bring their own computers. If you do bring your own computer, you have access to the Internet in your room.

Niche User

Computers: Most people have their own computers. I'd suggest having one, but computer labs usually have room in them, so it's really just a convenience thing.

Niche User

Computers: Bring your own computer for sure-you'll want it for AOL Instant Messenger.

Niche User

Computers: There are computer labs in every building, and in some buildings, there are two or three labs. Many of them stay open for 24 hours, but I prefer my own PC. It's better to have one in your room so that at any hour of the day, you can do your work without walking to the lab.

Niche User

Computers: The Ethernet connection in all the dorms is awesome. It definitely beats my dial-up connection at home. There are plenty of labs around campus that you can access, but it's also pretty convenient to have your own computer.

Niche User

Computers: The computer network is great. It's fast and convenient. The labs are sometimes crowded. The printers are out of paper sometimes. You could get by without your own computer. People do that. But it's more convenient to have your own, especially during those last minutes before a paper is due. It's bad when you just need to print something out, and the printer is either crowded, broken, or out of paper! Personally, I would rather have my own.

Niche User

Computers: You definitely don't need your own computer, but if you do decide to get one, get a laptop. I learned the hard way this year that laptops are so much better than desktops. You really don't need them because the school is well equipped with computer labs. However, if you don't have one, you'll miss out on the best part of college-AIM and downloading from Morpheus or KaZaa.

Niche User

Off-Campus Dining: Remember that Columbia is in New York City, where you can get virtually any type of food you want at any time of the day.

Niche User

Off-Campus Dining: There are some great little places around the area that have good stuff. Koronet's serves huge slices of pizza for cheap ($2-$3). There's an Ollie's across Broadway for Chinese-American, Tomo for Japanese down the road, Pinnacle has pizza and sandwiches, and there's the Milano Market, the Mill (Korean), and the Hungarian Pastry Shop on Amsterdam. There is a bunch more, and they're all in walking distance. Of course, if you're feeling adventurous enough, you can always hop on the subway and try out other restaurants around the city.

1 person found this useful Report
Niche User

Off-Campus Dining: There are about 20 restaurants within a few blocks of campus. Lunch specials abound with Caffe Swish being among the best with its tasty Asian fusion cuisine and lousy service. There are sandwich shops, pizza parlors, and diners available for quick bites. The West End is probably the most popular place to eat. It's only a block or two away from school, and it offers a little bit of everything, from bar food to Mexican eats, as well as French and Italian dishes.

1 person found this useful Report
Niche User

Off-Campus Dining: The food in New York City is great! You can find anything you want. I love Go Sushi! If you want names, just go to a nightlife Web site.

Niche User

Off-Campus Dining: The area around Columbia is adorable, and there is everything you can imagine from Ethiopian to French. There's Thai, Chinese, falafel, bagels, and coffee shops. It's really a great area.

1 person found this useful Report
Niche User

Off-Campus Dining: Any place in New York City has to be good or else it won't survive. There are so many great places within a few blocks or a short subway ride away. Pasta Presto is a great Italian place. Sophia's is another Italian place that is cheaper and has great Monday night specials. Mama Mexico is awesome; it's down a bit farther but worth the walk. Koronet Pizzeria has great cheap and huge pizza-I mean it's huge-something that you have to see for yourself! There is also Indian Café, a wrap place, and a ton of Asian spots for take out or eat in. My favorite for take out Chinese is Empire Corner because it's yummy, quick, and pretty inexpensive!

1 person found this useful Report
Niche User

Off-Campus Dining: New York City has some of the best restaurants in the world. Don't have much money? Head down to Gray's Papaya. Best hot dogs on the planet. Want to stay close to campus? Check out the restaurant row on Amsterdam and 123rd.

1 person found this useful Report
Niche User

Off-Campus Dining: The immediate neighborhood is full of restaurants several of which are really lackluster. For a good deal on a sushi lunch, go to Tomo. For an enormous slice of pizza, you've got Koronet Pizzeria. And for a little bit of relaxingly aloof service, there's Toasties, which serves an array of sturdy Americana dishes.

Niche User

Off-Campus Dining: They're really good places around Columbia, in my opinion. There are some nice sit-down places, which I go to infrequently. There are also lots of good pizza places and delis. Some good names include Koronet Pizzeria, Famous Famiglia, The Wrapp Factory, and a lot more.

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Overall ExperienceWhat's This?

Sara Cervantes
Hometown
Austin, TX
Major
English and American Studies
Grad Year
2014
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Columbia has a unique culture and school spirit. The intense workload and level of academic rigor bring students together in a culture of cozy complaint. Columbians constantly whine about their amount of work, but they also find a way to come together and persevere, and friendships are formed in this shared struggle.

Columbia is not for the faint of heart or those who need their hand to be held every step of the way through their college career. If you need help and seek it out, you will find it. But no one is going to sit down and explain everything to you, and Columbia can be pretty intimidating for that reason. However, this means that students are given the opportunity from the get-go to be independent and to decide for themselves what their college experience will mean for them. Columbia provides amazing resources and can help you achieve just about anything, or will at the very least encourage you to pursue whatever it is you want. The academics are amazing, and the Core Curriculum gives students a shared knowledge of Western thought, which is hugely influential in the way students will approach academics, careers, and life in general. The Columbia experience is an incredible one, and any student lucky enough to get in should definitely take advantage of such a wonderful, rare opportunity!

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