Diversity Initiative Grant

The Diversity Initiative Grant is intended to provide support for events that promote diversity, equity, and inclusion for the GSAS community. Types of events supported by the Diversity Initiative Grant funding include, but are not limited to: speaking engagements, discussion groups, social events, cultural events, and outreach initiatives. Diversity groups that are backed by students from underrepresented minorities will be prioritized.

Organized events have to comply with Columbia Events Policy and the expenditure should follow Columbia Expense Policy. Contact Asst. Director of Budget Planning & Finance Harold Ansah ([email protected]) BEFORE making any purchases/expenses.


Simply complete the Diversity Initiative Grant Application Form 


  • students from MA and PhD programs administered by GSAS (see eligible programs here)*
  • students from GSAS programs which have a representative in ASGC (check representatives here)
  • ASGC approved student groups
  • At the conclusion of your event, please send the Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Chair ([email protected]) any photos, flyers, summary, etc. of the event taking place. These items may be used in the future as examples of successful awarded grants.

*If your program is not administered by GSAS, you can find student council which represents your program here


  • Rolling, those who submit before 9/15 will be prioritized


Before incurring any expenses, you must contact Asst. Director of Budget Planning & Finance Harold Ansah ([email protected]) first.

Note: Columbia has a list of partner vendors from which you can make purchases without incurring taxes. Please reach out to Harold to check if your planned expenditure could be processed through this means. If you did not contact Harold and choose to make the purchase on your own with any partner vendor, we reserve the right to refuse to reimburse the tax part of your cost.

Funding is on a reimbursement basis, i.e., you must submit receipts for expenses up to the amount awarded by ASGC. This must be done by preparing a reimbursement packet of the following:

  1. The ASGC Student Initiative award letter (email).
  2. A completed Non-Profiled Payee Travel and Business Expense Worksheet (opens in a new tab):
    • The person to be reimbursed is the Payee.
    • Alcohol is considered as a separate item and should be segregated from other expenses.
    • Save as pdf.
  3. An advertisement for the event (preferably listing your name).
  4. Scanned and/or electronic receipts documenting all of the expenditures approved for the grant. Please send documents as separate files, not as a combined single document. For expenses in a foreign currency, please document how you converted them to US dollars. Receipts have to show the card holder name, last 4 of the card and the amount charged or something of that nature. Bank statements can also be used, but the charges have to be fully processed (pending charges will not be accepted).
  5. For additional instructions and tips, visit here.

To receive a reimbursement, email the packet to Harold Ansah at [email protected] and fill out the Diversity Initiative Grant Reimbursement Form within 30 days following the event.


If your event is requesting funding for honoraria for speakers, please see the university policy, which include caveats regarding Columbia University affiliation, visa status, etc.: https://universitypolicies.columbia.edu/content/payment-honoraria

ASGC can provide funding for honoraria, however, will not be involved in the subsequent paperwork to disburse those funds. If you would like to host an event that wants to provide honoraria to its speakers, please speak to your department first, as they will be responsible for the correct disbursal. 

*Honoraria does not include paying for a service ie. for someone leading a workshop