Undergraduate Seminars

Come for a meal and seminar discussion with faculty from Columbia and other universities in the New-York area on such topics as education in an age of distraction, leisure and the liberal arts, progress and history, and love and critique in the contemporary academy. Our discussions also offer an opportunity for students to delve more deeply into authors they have encountered in their Core courses.


"Guilt and Repentance"

Rabbi Shalom Carmy of Yeshiva University leads a discussion on the social pressures of guilt and the limits of forgiveness in traditional western cultures and contemporary society.

- 2/8: Session 1

- 2/15: Session 2

- 2/22: Session 3


"Facts, Verisimilitude, and Fake News"

Chad Hegelmeyer of the Department of English at NYU explores the limits of certitude and the challenge of objectivity in our modern language and discourse.

- 3/23: Session 1

- 4/6: Session 2

- 4/13: Session 3

- 4/20: Session 4


Join us for outings that examine the human condition in conjunction with cultural events in New York. Open to undergraduate and graduate students.

Upcoming excursions include

- 4/6: Verdi's Luisa Miller at the Metropolitan Opera 7:30pm, preceded by dinner and conversation on Goerthe and Romanticism.

- 4/14: Hamilton: Student and Alumnus walking tour of downtown New York to explore the sites of Columbia University's origins, including lunch and discussion of Alexander Hamilton's role as a colonial college student.


Meet over tea or a meal with financial professionals, professors, doctors, lawyers, artists, and journalists to discuss their vocations and formation.

"The liberal arts are the liberating arts. They involve memory, calculation, manipulation, and measurement, and call for dexterity of both mind and hand. Without these powers no mind is free to be what it desires. The mind itself desires to be free—from the animal within, from the enigma without."
- Mark Van Doren