Student councils

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The Student Councils at Columbia are organized groups of students charged with various responsibilities.

Each school council functions in its own specific way, generally with individual by-laws, constitutions, and election procedures. They generally, however, do not have statutory powers in the governance and administration of the university; rather, they exist at the pleasure of the respective deans of student affairs. By contrast, students representatives elected to the University Senate do have a voice in the governance and administration of the university.

List of student councils

Columbia has three undergraduate student councils, one for each undergraduate school, as follows:

In addition, Barnard College students are represented by the Student Government Association (SGA). It effectively shares coequal status with its Columbia counter-parts, and all four often operate in tandem.[1]

From time to time, CCSC and ESC consider a merger, given the close integration of their respective student bodies, but usually concerns about the ability of a unified council (which would presumably be dominated by representatives from Columbia College) to properly represent the interests of engineering students, and preserving 'engineering identity' ends anything beyond preliminary discussion.

Class Councils

In addition to each school's top-level student council, the freshman through senior classes of CC, SEAS, and Barnard College each have their own class councils. These councils include a "class president" and other officers. They represent the interests of their respective class years, and organizing class-wide events like Lerner Pub for seniors or Winter Wonderland for freshmen. Class councils typically liaise with their respective school's top-level student council.


The functions of student councils are to:

The allocation of funds is perhaps the most important function. Each spring, at a meeting known as "F@CU", the councils divide out the proceeds of the student life fees between themselves and the student group governing boards.


  1. This is yet another layer of the Columbia-Barnard Relationship.