Famous Columbia Alumni’s Advice to Incoming Freshmen

We at the Fed know one’s first year can be the scariest time in college, so we reached out to the worldwide network of Columbia alumni to ask what they wish they knew when they were first-years. Here are their tips for surviving and navigating that classic rough-and-tumble Columbia lifestyle:

  • “I didn’t read a single book in LitHum, and guess what? To this day, no one has asked me a single question about the Odyssey. I’m thriving.” — Barack Obama
  • “When I’m too stressed or depressed / I just sit back and express / myself through freestyle rap / and it all doesn’t seem like such a mess.” — Alexander Hamilton
  • “Lmao I got outta there as soon as I could. See ya when you’re NYU transfers, suckers.” —Timothee Chalamet
  • “Looking back, the one regret of my life is that I really wish I spent more time chilling in JJs.” — Dwight D. Eisenhower
  • “Don’t try to found a right-wing newspaper, or it might become an incredibly popular and hilarious satire paper instead.” — Neil Gorsuch