There are many volunteer opportunities available especially for Columbia University students and faculty. Some of these opportunities are offered through clubs at Columbia University.
CSI: Columbia Space Initiative
CSI’s mission is to promote interest in space news, the space industry, and the impact of space on a social level. Various teams that participate in a Micro-gravity NASA competition, outreach, high-altitude balloon engineering, and rocket engineering.
CUFIRST: Columbia's FIRST Robotics Team
The team comes from two local high schools: Columbia Secondary School and Morris High School. They meet about twice a week after school on campus and more frequently leading up to the competition each spring. Undergraduates work with students to design and build a robot then to compete in local, regional, and national tournaments.
E.N.G.: Engineering the Next Generation
Engineering the Next Generation (E.N.G.) is a summer research experience at Columbia University's School of Engineering and Applied Sciences, targeting highly motivated underrepresented high school students from select local partner schools.
Engineering Speaks gives engineers from Columbia the opportunity to speak directly to students in local schools.Typically engineers tell a “life story” and explain their personal path, including passions, education, current work, etc
Girls Who Code has a Columbia club chapter that runs during the school year. This national organization is dedicated to closing the gender gap in the technology and engineering sectors. The program meets on campus and recruits high school girls from local high-need partner schools.
The Columbia University Chapter of Engineers Without Borders USA supports international community-driven development programs by collaborating with local partners to design and implement sustainable engineering projects, while creating transformative experiences and responsible leaders. In this way, the program seeks to empower communities to meet their basic human needs and help solve the world’s most pressing challenges in places that would often be overlooked by large scale philanthropic efforts. Our projects in Ghana, Morocco, and Uganda have positively impacted over 10,000 individuals!
Inside Engineering invites school groups into Columbia Engineering labs to show students what engineering looks like in practice.Seeing lab equipment, work spaces, and engineers working on high-level problems is an exceptional opportunity for students. Moreover, this program uniquely offers access to students who would not otherwise see academic research.
Columbia University Competitions in Math
Columbia University Competitions in Math, a student group supported by the Engineering Student Council, hosts on campus tournaments in upper-level mathematics for high schools students. The Columbia Math Tournament, offered during the fall semester, is for a wide range of high school students from the New York and New Jersey area. The Columbia Math Majors of America Tournament for High Schools (Columbia MMATHS) is offered during the spring semester and advanced math students from the area are welcome to participate.
MRSEC: Materials Research Science and Engineering Center
Columbia hosts an NSF MRSEC, called the Center for Precision Assembly of Superstratic and Superatomic Solids, which is a partnership with City College of New York, as well as academic, industry, and international collaborators. Faculty from materials science, chemistry, physics, mechanical engineering, and electrical engineering, form two interdisciplinary research groups and focus on two-dimensional atomic sheets and zero-dimensional molecular clusters.
NSBE: National Society of Black Engineers
NSBE is dedicated to the academic and professional success of African-American engineering students and professionals. NSBE offers its members leadership training, professional development activities, mentoring opportunities, career placement services and more.
Robogals teaches design and programming with Boe Bots and Lego robots. It is a chapter of the international non-profit organization and aims to get more girls between the ages of 9 and 16 interested in science, engineering, and technology.
Sci-Inspire works with Columbia Engineering to connect volunteers with local K-12 schools. This school-based program supports STEM education and collaborates with other student groups on campus to train volunteers for educational and outreach activities, as well as to screen (fingerprint) them in compliance with the NYC DoE.
SciRISE: Scientific Research by International Students at ELLIS
SciRISE is a student group where CU student participants mentor high school students from ELLIS Preparatory Academy who recently immigrated from countries all over Africa, Latin America, the Middle East, and Southeast Asia on independent scientific research projects! Mentors would attend a minimum of one mentoring session per month.
SHPE: Society of Hispanic Pre-Professional Engineers
SHPE's vision is a world where Hispanics are highly valued and influential as the leading innovators, scientists, mathematicians and engineers. SHPE changes lives by empowering the Hispanic community to realize its fullest potential and to impact the world through STEM awareness, access, support and development. Outreach activities include in-school presentations, junior chapters, and tutoring.
CU SIAM: Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics (CU SIAM)
CU SIAM is Columbia’s chapter of an international community of over 13000 members and 500 institutions for industrial and applied math. The national SIAM organization exists to promote interaction between mathematics and other scientific and technological communities. On campus they are involved in a range of student fun activities, including Latex tutorials, peer advising, and company visits. This year they are organizing a five-session Coding Bootcamp focused on introducing local high school students to Python and mathematical modeling.
SWE: Society of Women Engineers
SWE’s mission is to stimulate women to achieve full potential in careers as engineers and leaders, expand the image of the engineering profession as a positive force in improving the quality of life, and demonstrate the value of diversity. For more than six decades, SWE has given women engineers a unique place and voice within the engineering industry. The organization is centered around a passion for the members' success and continues to evolve with the challenges and opportunities reflected in today's exciting engineering and technology specialties.