Funding for Student Organizations

Columbia Health makes available $6,000 per year—$3,000 per fall and spring terms—to assist student groups with funding events and activities. Individual groups can request between $250 and $1,000 per event. For funding requests under $250, groups may contact individual divisions within Columbia Health, but can only receive funding from one of those divisions per event and cannot receive funding from individual divisions and the general fund for the same event.

Eligibility and Guidelines

  1. Funding is available to recognized student organizations from Columbia University and affiliates who are required or are eligible to pay the Columbia Student Health and Related Services Fee. Groups must also be recognized by a student governing body. Funding may be requested for events or travel—including registration, logistics, speaker fees, accommodations, materials—that meet the following criteria:
  • Event meets or exceeds all University event guidelines and requirements.
  • Activity is relevant to one or more divisions within Columbia Health and supports the Columbia Health mission.
  • Events addressing health information must be based on sound evidence and science.
  • Event does not promote alcohol or other drug use (including mimicking alcohol use with nonalcoholic options) or unsafe or unhealthy activities.
  • Where appropriate, events have been approved by Risk Management.
  • Event has action-based outcomes listed in application. Basic awareness events will not be funded.
  • Event or activity 1) promotes critical thinking or healthful and thoughtful decision-making about health-related and life issues, or 2) encourages risk reduction.
  • Funding will not be provided for the purchase of alcohol, cash prizes, off-campus advertising, salaries, or capital expenses.
  • Funding for food must be used to provide balanced and healthier choices.
  1. Event must be accessible to participants with disabilities and all marketing material must contain the approved disability statement: “Students needing disability accommodations in order to participate in this event must contact Disability Services at 212-854-2388 or [email protected] in advance.”
  2. If alcohol will be available, the following criteria must be met:
  • Alcohol will not be the focus of the event.
  • Funding will not be used to purchase alcohol or support the other requirements in this section related to having alcohol at the event.
  • Distribution of alcohol must meet all university guidelines.
  • More than snack food must be available at no cost to event participants.
  • Alcohol may not be included in event advertising.
  • Attractive nonalcoholic beverages must be available in equal quantities.
  • Information about the responsible use of alcohol must be placed by the alcohol serving location(s).
  • The organization must have designees who do not drink during the entire event and will manage alcohol distribution and any related behavior at the event.

Columbia Health will make a reasonable effort to have at least one staff member attend events and activities it sponsors. In-kind donations of marketing materials will be determined on an individual division basis. Student groups with which Columbia Health has formal, standing relationships (e.g., CU-EMS, Stressbusters, SHAC, Men’s Peer Education, etc.) do not need to follow this protocol and should discuss funding issues with the director of the division with which the group is affiliated.

How to Apply for Funding

Applications are reviewed on a rolling basis:

  1. Download and print the Events and Funding Application and Guidelines.
  2. Applications will only be considered if:
  • Applications are submitted at least four weeks prior to the planned event.
  • Planned events meet all application criteria.
  1. Return the completed form to Columbia Health via email at [email protected].
  2. Applications are reviewed weekly, and organizations will be notified no later than two weeks before the event.

Sexual Violence Response Co-Sponsorship

Sexual Violence Response provides student organizations that are recognized by a governing student board a way to request up to $250 or other forms of sponsorship.

  • Unregistered student groups are not eligible to receive funding but may request other forms of co-sponsorship.
  • Applications submitted with less than one month notice may not be considered.
  • Incomplete forms will not be considered.
  • Organizations already receiving funds from Columbia Health cannot request additional funding from Sexual Violence Response.
  • Application must be submitted one month prior to the event.
  • Groups that receive co-sponsorship funding must include the Sexual Violence Response logo in event advertising materials or list SVR as a co-sponsor and include the statement: “Students needing disability accommodations in order to participate in this event must contact Disability Services at 212-854-2388 or [email protected].”

Complete the online form to request co-sponsorship from Sexual Violence Response.

For more information, contact Sexual Violence Response at 212-854-HELP/4357.

Responsible Community @ Columbia Mini-grants

Our goal is to provide positive and engaging social opportunities, on and off campus, that do not focus on the consumption of alcohol. This is part of our broader effort to promote a responsible community at Columbia ([email protected]) and reduce higher-risk drinking. Grants are provided by Alice! Health Promotion in conjunction with Residential Life Organizations & Programs.

While events must be alcohol-free, they cannot be advertised as such. We seek to provide opportunities for student engagement that are not just marketed toward those that desire alcohol-free events.

  • Sponsored by RAs and/or SRAs; collaboration is encouraged, but not required.
  • Social, recreational, or entertainment-based (not an educational program)
  • Held on a Thursday, Friday, or Saturday night
  • Scheduled to begin at 9:00 p.m. or after
  • Activities and choices do not promote or involve alcohol or other drug use or unsafe/unhealthy activities. Events cannot mimic alcohol use (e.g., no root beer pong, sparkling cider instead of champagne).
  • Activities that are structured to promote interaction, engagement, and investment to attend the entire program are highly preferred (e.g., open mic night; iceskating, cooking contests). The program ideally will serve to hold interest over a period of time versus serving as a “stop-by” prior to heading out for the evening. This needs to be more than a study break.
  • Events cannot be advertised as alcohol-free.
  • Events must be accessible to students with disabilities and include the statement: “Students needing disability accommodations in order to participate in this event must contact Disability Services at 212-854-2388 or [email protected].”
  • Events cannot be advertised prior to approval from both Residential Programs and Alice!
  • All submissions must include the anticipated attendance and a detailed budget.
  • If food is included, we encourage you to select healthier items. Guidance is available from this Planning Healthy Meetings and Events guide.
  • All proposals must be submitted a minimum of two weeks in advance of the program date.

With “ticket” requests (to a show, comedy night, concert, etc.), we fund no more than $5 per person, up to $200 for the total cost of the event, to maximize attendance under the following circumstances:

  • Only when the funding helps to subsidize the cost
  • Tickets are not otherwise subsidized
  • Students must fund some portion of the event
  • If unsure about the criteria, contact Alice! Health Promotion before submitting.
  • RA/SRA must be the person submitting.
  • Submit at least 14 days before the event.
  • We may suggest modifications. If you do not make the modifications prior to the event and resubmit for our approval, it will not be funded.
  • Evaluations are required.

For more information, email [email protected] or call 212-854-5453.