Diversity, Equity & Inclusion

Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

The Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion at the Columbia School of Social Work is committed to fostering diversity, equity, and inclusion practices and policies in classrooms, social spaces, offices, and all interactions between CSSW students, faculty, and staff. The Office was created as a result of a student-led initiative to demonstrate a commitment to social justice, equity, and inclusion. The DEI Office oversees and develops programming and services that link issues of diversity, multiculturalism, inclusion, intersectionality, and social justice for students, faculty, and staff, including:
  • facilitating affinity group-based supportive spaces, workshops and trainings for students, faculty and staff
  • organizing school-wide heritage celebrations.
  • collaborating with student caucuses; and
  • providing mediation services.
If you have a DEI-related concern, feedback or event idea, please share here.

Commitment to Diversity

From the Dean…

Melissa Begg, Dean & Professor of the Columbia School of Social Work, reaffirms the School’s dedication to diversity and social justice.

DEI Mission Statement

Read our core beliefs on addressing power, race, oppression and privilege (PROP) via a lens that frames all academic and administrative activities.

Our Guiding Principles

Learn more about what Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) means at CSSW.

DEI Advisory Committee

This committee is charged with improving the systematic attention given to concerns related to diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging.


The Professional Development and Self Awareness program (PDSA) promotes an inclusive environment that fosters the development of self-awareness and accountability.


Explore DEI-related resources and announcements.


News & Events

Check out what the Office of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion has been up to lately. You can read some news about our initiatives and you can also check out events we are hosting or co-hosting in the future. News Events

Heritage Calendar

A comprehensive calendar of heritage events celebrated at CSSW. Coming Soon

DEI Media Archives

An archive of fully captioned video recordings of previous events – lectures, workshops, conversations, celebrations – hosted by DEI and PDSA. See archives

About Us

DEI Team

Karma Lowe Assistant Dean, Diversity, Equity and Inclusion knl3@columbia.edu 212-851-2364 Room 531

Visit Our Space in Room 533

The home for the School of Social Work’s Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion is the first space you see when exiting the elevator on the 5th floor of the Social Work Building. It contains
  • A student lounge area, the primary space for programming and community building for CSSW’s students of color and LGBTQIA+ students
  • Offices for the Assistant Dean of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion and the DEI Program Coordinator
To reserve the lounge, student groups should contact swdei@columbia.edu. When not reserved, the space is available as a general lounge area, open 10:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. Monday–Thursday and 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Friday. Questions/concerns? Contact us: swdei@columbia.edu