Between Columbia University and the affiliated Barnard College there are 8,700 undergraduates on campus. The combined Jewish population at Columbia and Barnard is around 1,500 students. Yavneh, the Orthodox community at Columbia/Barnard, has around 200 members. Most, but not all, of these students learned in an Orthodox gap year program for at least one year. First-year students typically live in dormitories while many upperclassmen live in university apartments with several bedrooms and kitchen facilities, with some in apartments just off campus. Students can obtain Shabbat keys for their dorm rooms.

The Shabbat life at Columbia/Barnard is vibrant. All davening takes place at the Kraft Center for Jewish Life, Columbia/Barnard’s Hillel building. On Friday night, the Orthodox minyan is attended by 200 students. Shabbat morning services are attended by 150 students followed by kiddush and often a shiur or a social activity. On a typical shabbat, 100-200 students eat Friday night dinner in the Kraft Center, and many students participate in Shabbat dinners in students’ apartments. Students enjoy Shabbat lunch through Barnard dining or in students’ apartments. Additionally, the JLIC couple regularly host students for both Shabbat and Yom Tov meals. Yavneh members gather in the Kraft Center on Shabbat afternoon where they socialize, daven Mincha, and take part in a communal seudah shelishit, attended by 100 students. During seudah shelishit there is singing and a shiur by a student.


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Students Speak

"Creating a warm atmosphere that promotes Jewish values can at times be difficult to achieve on a college campus. The OU-JLIC family at Columbia/Barnard is instrumental in establishing an atmosphere that allows students to thrive religiously, making the campus environment more conducive to Jewish student life. Our campus, as a result, feels like a home away from home." JOSH

It's True

At midnight on “Orgo Night,” the night before the Organic Chemistry final, the Columbia marching band invades the library’s main reading room to distract students with music and all kinds of frivolous fun. 212.854.5111

The Kraft Center for Jewish Student Life, Columbia Barnard Hillel, 606 West 115TH Street, New York, NY 10025