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1919 - 2019

In September 2019, we will begin a celebration of the 100th anniversary of the Core Curriculum.

We invite you to be a part of our community memory project, Core Stories, where the stories of alumni, students and faculty will give voice to the experience and impact of the Core Curriculum.

Core Stories

The Core challenges us to question our place in the world, to listen to the ideas of others and to pursue the seemingly unanswerable, at Columbia and beyond.

We are collecting your memories and perspectives, to share back out during the celebration year and in a final community expression of the Core, in Summer 2020.

illustration of people holding up the Core Centennial logo

Tony Kushner CC’78

Playwright, Angels in America

“One of the things that I really got from the Core was learning not to be afraid of primary sources. And that it was possible to tackle something as difficult as Hegel, which is in translation written in perfectly formed English sentences and you read it and you don't know, at all, what's being expressed. And then, after an hour or two of chewing it over, it will open up, it will become accessible to you. And Columbia was an extraordinary training in that and I've remained grateful for that training in my career and in my life as a citizen - and in just my life.”

Tony Kushner

Victor Cha CC'83, SIPA'88, GSAS'94

D.S. Song-KF Chair in the Department of Government and School of Foreign Service at Georgetown University.

“My first semester of Contemporary Civilization: I did horribly (my only C+ in four years). I thought, “This stuff is not for me” — little did I know then that I would eventually do a Ph.D. in political science.”

Victor Cha

Sandhya Nankani CC’96

Publisher and Founder, Literary Safari and KIDMAP (Kids’ Inclusive and Diverse Media Action Project)

"I have very strong memories of all my Core Curriculum courses, but in particular my freshman-year Music Humanities course . . . it was my first time being exposed to this body of Western art and music. . . . It was like a whole new world opened up to me . . . I remember attending an Indian classical music concert at Miller Theatre and writing a paper about raga and comparing it to jazz; I was beginning this profound journey of making sense of what it means to be a bifurcated American and to really see the world through multiple lenses."

Sandhya Nankani CC'96

How did the Core affect you?


Share your Story

Add your voice to the story of the Core.  Share your reflections and memories and help us give shape to this century-old shared experience.
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Register Today

Register today for the Opening Event to celebrate 100 years of the Core Curriculum.

And keep an eye out for the new Core Centennial website, going live soon.  You'll find more memories of the Core, essays, music, art and more.

Join in the Celebration of the Core Centennial