Multicultural Affairs' Columbia Mentoring Initiative (CMI) is an inter-generational mentorship program that connects first year students (Mentees) with returning students (Mentors), and all students with alumni. CMI provides students the opportunity to get involved in various "family trees" - Arab & Middle Eastern, Asian, Black, Indigeous, Latinx, LGBTQ+, International, and Mixed Heritage. Although participants are asked to specify one family tree, we recognize the multiple identities of our students and provide opportunities for CMI participants to get involved in cross-cultural CMI wide programming. Mentor, mentee, and chair positions are open to all undergraduates students in Columbia. Mentorship opportunities are open to all graduate students and alumni of Columbia.
How students can get involved!
We are not currently accepting applications for the CMI First Year Mentee. If you are an incoming first year student and interested in CMI, please email firstname.lastname@example.org for any questions or concerns.
Mentees participate in the following ways:
- Mentor Match: Meet regularly with your mentor for one-on-one support
- Mix & Mingle: Attend dinner discussions and connect with alumni who share their stories of success
- Social Activities: Participate in fun activities and events that bring together students from across all family trees
- Commit for one full academic year (Fall and Spring semesters)
- Attend mandatory mentor training and program opening reception/kick-off
- Serve as a support and guide to your mentee
- Attend CMI community functions (outings, dinner-discussions, etc.)
- Attend identity-based family tree functions
- Maintain communication and meet regularly with your mentee
- Meet once a month with the CMI program director
Chair Position Description
Family tree chairs are a select group of students who have been chosen through an application process to work with Multicultural Affairs in coordinating the Columbia Mentoring Initiative (CMI). Family tree chairs are primarily responsible for managing a group of 20 mentors and mentees. Upon acceptance of a family tree chair position, a student must commit to fulfilling all of the responsibilities outlined below for the duration of a full academic year. To apply for a chair position, the applicant must have been active in the CMI program during the previous year and be an enrolled student in good standing with Columbia College (CC) or the School of Engineering and Applied Science (SEAS) throughout the academic year.
- Attend weekly CMI Co-Chair Leadership Meetings—not permitted to miss more than two (2) meetings per semester
- Attend the mandatory family tree chair retreat, training(s) and program kick-off
- Complete program planning during spring and summer months
- Recruit program participants
- Coordinate monthly activities for a family tree consisting of 20 mentors and mentees
- Assist in planning CMI monthly dinner discussions
- Submit electronic weekly reports
- Gain practical leadership experience managing a University sponsored mentorship program
- Network and build relationships with University administrators, faculty, staff and alumni
- Give back to your community and create a welcoming campus environment for student at Columbia University
- Connect to members of your community in meaningful ways
The outgoing family tree chair and the CMI advisor from Multicultural Affairs will select the new family tree chair. Both the outgoing family tree chair and the advisor will meet to review and discuss the applications submitted for the position. If an applicant meets the preliminary criterion they will be invited to interview for the chair position. After all interviews are completed, the outgoing chair and advisor will meet again to select the new family tree chair.
All applicants must submit a completed Chair Application to Multicultural Affairs in order to be considered for the family tree chair position. The application consists of personal information, campus/outside involvements (including with the CMI program) and short essays. An applicant’s campus/outside involvement is a key factor; however, essays will still be considered a significant aspect of the selection process.
CMI provides graduate students and alumni the opportunity to get involved in various "family trees"- Arab & Middle Eastern, Asian, Black, Indigeous, Latinx, LGBTQ+, International and Mixed Hertiage. Although participants will be asked to specify one family tree, we recognize the multiple identities of our alumni and provide opportunities for CMI participants to get involved in cross-cultural CMI wide programming.
If you are interested in getting involved with CMI as an Alumni and/or a Graduate student, please submit the CMI Alumni & Graduate Student Mentor Application!