Welcome, International Students!

Dear Students, 

Greetings from New York City! I am the Director of International Student Programs and Services (ISPS) and writing to you because in one way or another, you are included in the broad definition that Columbia uses to identify “international students.” Maybe you have a citizenship other than the United States, perhaps you grew up outside the U.S., you may have moved around from place to place as you were growing up, you have strong ties to your family’s cultural history, or you attended high school in a country that was not your own. Whatever your story, that is the point – you have a story and a voice to share on this internationally diverse campus. Slowly the world you come from and your life at Columbia will transition from separate cultures into one that is distinctly your own.

On this journey you may encounter milestones and obstacles that others before you have faced: experiencing jetlag, conquering the subway system, craving a food hard to find in New York, declaring a major, forging connections with peers and professors, staying in touch with people back home, and developing convictions in your beliefs. As for most new students, it may not come naturally at first, and, even if it does, feelings of culture shock and homesickness may arise when you least expect them. I encourage you to welcome these feelings as part of the experience, knowing all who come to come Columbia transition in different ways and that ISPS is one of many offices in this community to support you.

I look forward to meeting you and getting to know a little more about you. Enjoy the preparations you are no doubt undergoing for your move to campus. Feel free to be in touch now or throughout your time at Columbia with any questions or just to say hello.

Warmly,

Kirin Liquori Terni
Director of International Student Programs and Services
Columbia Student Affairs
Columbia College | Columbia Engineering


“On your path to Columbia, start where you are.” 

Dear Students,

Living at Columbia is an exciting and rigorous experience. There are many opportunities to pursue academia, engage in the community, and seek personal fulfillment. Yet with numerous options, decisions can seem overwhelming, even unattainable. An important component of the education at Columbia is balance; weighing opportunity with reality, everyday life with long term planning, and the culture of Columbia and New York City with your home culture.

At the United Nation’s inaugural International Day of Happiness at New York City headquarters, H.E. Ambassador Anwarul Karim Chowdhury, former Under-Secretary-General and High Representative of the United Nations, shared his vision of happiness by encouraging people to “enjoy the moments that take you to your aspirations; enjoy the path.” In the time before you arrive at Columbia, I encourage you to visualize your path here one step at a time and allow yourself to accept accomplishment and anticipation, embrace excitement and self-evaluation, acknowledge the unknown and the understood, and take a breath; it is okay to start where you are.

With Columbia’s community of advisors, you have the opportunity to discuss outcomes and plan for the decisions that lie ahead. Starting where you are means asking a lot of questions – so get ready. And remember, ISPS is a great place to start.

Cheers,
Kirin Liquori Terni
Director of International Student Programs and Services
Columbia Student Affairs
Columbia College | Columbia Engineering

International Student Programs and Services

Visit

510 Alfred Lerner Hall
2920 Broadway
New York, NY 10027

Call: 001 (212) 854-0720

Fax: 001 (212) 854-9801

Office Hours
Monday–Friday
9:00–17:00