Columbia Journey Seminars for First-Year Students

The goal of the CUSP Columbia Journey Seminar (CJS) is to foster an environment in which first-year Scholars begin to cultivate a relationship between their emerging individual interests and the needs and opportunities of Columbia’s academic and social communities. The CJS curriculum offers Scholars the unique opportunity to learn about themselves, Columbia, and the immediate Columbia community (Harlem and Morningside Heights), as well as the greater community of New York City. The seminar introduces them to principles of inquiry and the practice of research by gaining exposure to key resources in the university and surrounding city. 

It brings First-Year Scholars together with Graduate Student Mentors (GSMs) completing their PhDs in different fields as well as faculty, administrators, and representatives from the community.

Attendance: Every Scholar must sign up for one CJS section that meets for one hour weekly, eight times per semester.

Please click here to view the 2023-24 CJS Syllabus.

From the Graduate Student Mentors: 

In many ways, the CJS extends the ethos of the Core. All of the first-year scholars read about and critically engage with an important set of issues relating to community, focusing on the New York and Columbia communities in the fall and spring, respectively.

The pedagogical principles around which the syllabus is constructed share much in common with the Core Curriculum: it is based on readings of broad cultural significance which students are encouraged to use in developing and understanding a richer conception of their personal identities and values, and classes prioritize student discussion over lectures.




Scholars exploring Harlem for the CJSScholars exploring Harlem for the CJS  Scholars on a tour of the Lower East Side of New York for the CJSScholars on a tour of the Lower East Side of New York for the CJS

Columbia Undergraduate Scholars Program


403 Alfred Lerner Hall
2920 Broadway
New York, NY 10027

Call: (212) 854-6378

Fax: (212) 854-2562

Office Hours
9:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m.