Columbia College | Columbia Engineering

Columbia Mentoring Initiative (CMI) Participation

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. Mentor, mentee and chair positions are available to all undergraduates students in Columbia College and Columbia Engineering. Mentorship opportunities are open to all graduate students and alumni of Columbia. Learn more about our different opportunities for involvement below.

Questions about Columbia Mentoring Initiative? Please email

CMI First-Year Mentee 

Applications for mentee positions are only being accepted for those interested in the Indigenous Family Tree. Mentee positions in all other family trees have now been filled for the 201920 academic year. 


  • Meet at least twice per month with your mentor for one-on-one support
  • Attend monthly Family Tree events planed by your CMI Chairs that help build a close and supportive identity-based community
  • Attend CMI-wide events that bring together students from across all family trees and help connect students with alumni

Selected mentees must attend the CMI Kick-Off Event on Friday, September 27, 5:008:00 p.m.

CMI Mentor

Applications for CMI mentor positions for the 20192020 academic year are now closed.


  • Commit for one full academic year (fall and spring semesters)
  • Attend mandatory mentor training and program opening reception/kick-off event
  • Serve as a support and guide to your mentee
  • Maintain communication and meet regularly with your mentee
  • Attend CMI-wide community functions (campus events, dinner-discussions, alumni mixers etc.)
  • Attend identity-based family tree functions (outings, campus events, etc.)
  • Attend required mid- and end-of-semester mentor check-ins with family tree chairs.

CMI Chair

CMI chair applications for the 20192020 academic year are now filled. Hiring for the 2020-2021 academic year will take place in March 2020. 

Position Description

Family tree chairs are a select group of students who have been chosen through an application process to work with Multicultural Affairs to coordinate the Columbia Mentoring Initiative. 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 or Columbia Engineering throughout the academic year.


  • Attend weekly CMI leadership meetings on Tuesdays from 5:006:00 p.m.
    • Unless excused, a chair may not miss more than two meetings per semester
  • Attend the mandatory family tree chair retreat, training(s) and program kick-off event
  • Complete program planning during spring and summer months
  • Recruit, select and assist in matching program participants
  • Conduct check-in meetings with mentors and mentees and support the development of healthy mentoring relationships within your tree
  • Coordinate monthly activities for a family tree consisting of 20 mentors and mentees
  • Assist in planning CMI-wide events
  • Maintain updated records of family tree events and manage family tree budget 
  • Contribute to CMI newsletters and social media 


  • All CMI chairs must be an enrolled student in Columbia College or Columbia Engineering and maintain a minimum GPA of 2.5
  • Upon acceptance of a family tree chair position, the student must commit to all the responsibilities outlined above for the duration of the full 2019-2020 academic year


  • A stipend of $1,200 for the entire academic year
  • 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

Selection Process

All applicants must submit a completed 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 answers. All selected candidates will be asked to meet with the director of the program for an interview. In addition, applicants will have their academic, community and disciplinary standing reviewed. 

Important Dates

  • Application Due: Sunday, March 24 at 11:59 p.m. 
  • Interview Dates: Thursday, March 27Thursday, April 4
  • Application Status Notification: Friday, April 5

Alumni Involvement

Columbia Mentoring Initiative provides Columbia College and Columbia Engineering alumni the opportunity to support undergraduate students who currently participate in the CMI program. If you would like to get involved with CMI, please email for more information.

Multicultural Affairs


505 Alfred Lerner Hall
2920 Broadway
New York, NY 10027

Call: 212-854-0720

Fax: 212-854-6972

Office Hours
9:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m.

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