Spring 2018 Workshops and Programs

The Office of Work/Life invites you to our spring semester events and workshops.  Please click on the "register" links to sign up for these sessions. 

We also welcome walk-ins when space permits except where noted.  For lunch-time sessions, feel free to bring a brown-bag lunch. Workshops are offered at no charge, unless otherwise noted. A PDF flier of our spring 2018 events and workshops is also available.

For questions or additional information, email worklife@columbia.edu or call 212-854-8019.

Please explore the Office of Work/Life website to learn about breastfeeding support/lactation rooms, back-up care (pending eligibility), wellness activities, the events calendar, and to subscribe to the PreK and Kindergarten NYC newsletter, wellness listserv, or RE-NYC, our new housing newsletter. 

You can also request individual consultations to help you find child care, K-12 schooling, and housing. Additional services to support faculty recruitment are also available. 


Columbia University makes every effort to accommodate individuals with disabilities. If you require disability accommodations to attend an event at Columbia University, please contact Disability Services at (212) 854-2388 at least 5 days in advance of the event. 

AGING & ADULT/ELDER CARE

Establishing and Retaining Legal Control Over Important Life Decisions  

What You Need to Know about Alzheimer's & Dementia (POSTPONED)

EARLY EDUCATION, CHILD CARE & PARENTING 

Group Early Education and Child Care Options for Children Under 5 Years

Breastfeeding Basics: For Home and Work/School

In-Home Child Care: A Focus on Nanny Necessities  

A Baby Shower for New and Expectant Parents: Babies Expected or Born in 2016, 2017 or 2018

HOUSING

The Process of Purchasing a Property

How Do I Obtain a Mortgage...And Can I Afford It?

Small Spaces - How to Live in One!

Making Your Home Green & Healthy 

Cut the Clutter and Get Organized

SCHOOLING 

Public and Private High School Admissions Process: An Overview with Q&A Session 

Kindergarten Admissions 101 

College Planning Information Session (for parents of high school students) 

WELLNESS

Mindful Practice

Set the Dinner Table, the EAT 5 Way

Citi Bike Street Skills

Sounds of Well-Being: A Campus Music Break  

Walk to Wellness 

Eat Well Columbia 

Weight Watchers at Work 

Ergonomic Workstation Set-Up

AGING & ADULT/ELDER CARE 

Establishing and Retaining Legal Control Over Important Life Decisions
Wondering if you should have a living will?  Thinking of creating a trust for your children? If one of your older loved ones was ill, would you know his or her treatment preferences? Does your family know your wishes if you were ever unable to advocate for yourself legally or medically?
These important questions can have significant impact on you and your family. The best ways to make sure that everyone's wishes are followed are through heart-to-heart conversations and having the appropriate legal documents in order. 

Following this seminar, participants will be better able to:

•    Understand the legal tools available
•    Discuss these legal matters with their loved ones
•    Access information on relevant local and state laws

Date:  Tuesday, January 30, 2018
Time:  12:00-1:00 p.m.
Location: Columbia University, Medical Center Campus, 701 W. 168th St., Hammer Building, 312
Presenter: Facilitator from Humana/HRI (Columbia University’s Employee Assistance Program) 
Register

What You Need to Know About Alzheimer's & Dementia (POSTPONED DUE TO INCLEMENT WEATHER)
Facing the challenge of caring for a loved one who may have Alzheimer’s or Dementia raises many questions.  What are the signs of the disease? What happens next? How can I get the support I need for our family?

At this workshop, sponsored by CaringKind NYC, you will learn about Alzheimer’s disease and other types of dementia, including warning signs to look for, how to get a diagnosis, and what kind of resources and services are available, free of charge, from CaringKind. CaringKind is a non-profit organization dedicated to Dementia caregiving.

Date:  New Date TBD
Time:  12:00 - 1:30 p.m.
Location: Columbia University, Office of Work/Life, 516 W. 112th St. – between Amsterdam & Broadway
(Between “Lionsgate” apartments and Christian Science Reading Room)
Presenter: Marilucy Lopes, Director of Education and Outreach, CaringKind
Register 

EARLY EDUCATION, CHILD CARE & PARENTING

    Group Early Education and Child Care Options for Children Under 5 Years
    Hear an overview of the different types of early education and child care options available in the NYC area, including family day care and center-based care.  This workshop will help you determine which option best meets your family’s needs.  Information on the application process and timeline will be included, with Q&A to follow.     
    Date:  Wednesday, February 7, 2018
    Time:  12:00-1:00 p.m.
    Location: Columbia University, Office of Work/Life, 516 W. 112th St. – between Amsterdam and Broadway
    (Between “Lionsgate” apartments and Christian Science Reading Room)
    Presenter: Carolyn Singer, Associate Director, School and Child Care Search Service
    Register

    Please feel free to bring your infants and young children if you do not have alternative child care available.

    Breastfeeding Basics: For Home and Work/School
    This is an educational workshop for expectant and new mothers who want to breastfeed their babies when they return to work or school.  Participants will learn breastfeeding basics, including common difficulties and how to manage them, practical strategies and resources.  Feel free to bring your spouse or partner, and your infant if you have already given birth. Beverages and light snacks will be provided.
    Date:  Thursday, February 15, 2018
    Time:  3:00 – 5:00 p.m.
    Location: Columbia University, Morningside Campus, Low Library, Trustees Room 212
    Presenter: Beverly Solow, Certified Lactation Consultant
    Register

    In-Home Child Care: A Focus on Nanny Necessities
    Learn about the basics of in-home child care in order to help determine if this option best meets your family’s child care needs.  The discussion will include information on interviewing, hiring, creating work agreements, and more, with time reserved for Q&A.  
    Date:  Tuesday, March 6, 2018
    Time:  12:00 - 1:00 p.m.
    Location: Columbia University, Office of Work/Life, 516 W. 112th St. – between Amsterdam and Broadway
    (Between “Lionsgate” apartments and Christian Science Reading Room)
    Presenter: Carolyn Singer, Associate Director, School and Child Care Search Service
    Register

    Please feel free to bring your infants and young children if you do not have alternative child care available.

    A Baby Shower for New and Expectant Parents:  Babies Expected or Born in 2016, 2017, or 2018
    Join other expectant and new parents to learn about the variety of ways that Columbia can support you and your family as you embark on this exciting life transition of welcoming a baby into your home!

    In addition to time for parents to meet each other, representatives from the Office of Work/Life, HR Benefits, and Columbia Health will guide attendees through programs, services, benefits and policies available to Columbia families. 

    Spouses/Partners and babies are welcome to attend. Refreshments will be served.  Take home a Work/Life goodie bag and enter to win one of our door prizes!
    Date: Thursday, April 26, 2018
    Time: 4:30 p.m. – 6:00 p.m.
    Location: Columbia University, Office of Work/Life, 516 W. 112th St. – between Amsterdam and Broadway
    (Between “Lionsgate” apartments and Christian Science Reading Room)
    Presenters: Representatives from Columbia University’s Office of Work/Life, HR Benefits, and Columbia Health
    Register

HOUSING

    The Process of Purchasing a Property
    Real estate experts will provide a step-by-step guide to home ownership, while answering questions about purchasing various types of properties (co-ops, condos, and houses).  What type of property is right for you?  How and where do you begin looking?  What are the associated costs?  What happens at closing?
    Date: Thursday, March 1, 2018
    Time: 5:30 p.m.-7:00 p.m.
    Location: Columbia University, Office of Work/Life, 516 W. 112th St. – between Amsterdam and Broadway
    (Between “Lionsgate” apartments and Christian Science Reading Room)
    Presenters: Two Real Estate Brokers
    Register

    How Do I Obtain a Mortgage… And Can I Afford It?
    The mortgage process may seem overwhelming, but three lenders will break down the options, outline the steps you need to take, explain credit reports, and most importantly – teach you how to determine if a property is affordable for you.
    Date: Thursday, March 22, 2018
    Time:  5:30 p.m.-7:00 p.m.
    Location: Columbia University, Office of Work/Life, 516 W. 112th St. – between Amsterdam and Broadway
    (Between “Lionsgate” apartments and Christian Science Reading Room)
    Presenters: Columbia’s Affinity Mortgage Lenders
    Register

    Small Spaces – How to Live in One!
    Whether you are downsizing into a smaller apartment or are new to New York and learning to live with less space, the helpful tips provided in this workshop will alleviate some visual clutter and start to make city living much easier.
    Consider attending this workshop along with “Cut the Clutter and Get Organized” for a total de-cluttering overhaul.

    Date: Wednesday, April 11, 2018
    Time:  12:00 p.m.-1:00 p.m.
    Location: Columbia University, Office of Work/Life 516 W. 112th St. – between Amsterdam and Broadway
    (Between “Lionsgate” apartments and Christian Science Reading Room)
    Presenter: Alice Lesman, Director, Housing Information and Referral Service
    Register

Making Your Home Green & Healthy 
Hear about a holistic approach to reducing harmful environmental exposures in your home and learn tips that can easily be incorporated into your life to decrease risks.
Date: Wednesday, April 18, 2018
Time:  12:00 p.m. – 1:00 p.m. 
Location: Columbia University, Office of Work/Life, 516 W. 112th St. – between Amsterdam and Broadway
(Between “Lionsgate” apartments and Christian Science Reading Room)
Presenters: Representatives from Environmental Stewardship and the Columbia Center for Children’s Environmental Health.
Register

     

    Cut the Clutter and Get Organized
    Need some tips on how to better organize your home or office and spend less time looking for your things? Three professional organizers will provide you with valuable techniques for de-cluttering and suggest tools to help you stay organized.  Come with your questions in order to receive specific guidance.
    Date: Wednesday, April 25, 2018
    Time:  12:00 p.m. – 1:00 p.m.
    Location: Columbia University, Office of Work/Life, 516 W. 112th St. – between Amsterdam and Broadway
    (Between “Lionsgate” apartments and Christian Science Reading Room)
    Presenters: Wendy Samuel, Clutter Therapy, LLC; Gail Furgal, Outtasight Organizing, LLC; and Donna Goldberg, The Organized Student, LLC
    Register

SCHOOLING
    Public and Private High School Admissions Process: An Overview with Q&A Session
    Applying to high school in NYC can seem like a daunting task, but this workshop will cover timelines, eligibility, requirements, standardized testing, and practical tips for understanding the process.  Experts will discuss admissions to both public and private high schools.  The workshop is geared toward families of students who are currently 6th and 7th graders.

    Date: Tuesday, April 10, 2018

    Time: 5:30 -7:00 p.m.
    Location: Columbia University, Office of Work/Life, 516 W. 112th St. – between Amsterdam and Broadway
    (Between “Lionsgate” apartments and Christian Science Reading Room)
    Presenters:  Fitima Pelez, High School Placement Manager, The School at Columbia; Maurice Frumkin, President of NYC Admissions Solutions; Mary Miele, founder and president of The Evolved Education Company.
    Register

    Kindergarten Admissions 101
    Where do I start?  What do I need to know?  Join us for a small group discussion on the kindergarten admissions process for public, private, faith-based, and charter schools.

    This workshop is intended for those with children entering Kindergarten in fall 2019.
    Each workshop will be limited to 5 participants to encourage questions.

    Date: Tuesday, April 17, 2018
    Time: 12:00 – 1:00 p.m.
    Location: Columbia University, Office of Work/Life, 516 W. 112th St. – between Amsterdam and Broadway
    (Between “Lionsgate” apartments and Christian Science Reading Room)
    Presenter: Marcia Roesch, Director of the School and Child Care Search Service
    Register

    AND

    Date: Wednesday May 2, 2018
    Time: 12:00 – 1:00 p.m.
    Location: Columbia University, Office of Work/Life, 516 W. 112th St. – between Amsterdam and Broadway
    (Between “Lionsgate” apartments and Christian Science Reading Room)
    Presenter: Marcia Roesch, Director of the School and Child Care Search Service
    Register

    College Planning Information Session (for parents of high school students)
    What are colleges looking for in prospective students? The presenters for this workshop are admissions officers who will offer advice on how to choose and apply to college and a perspective on what they consider when reading applications.

    Questions about early decision/early action and standardized testing will be addressed. This session is intended for parents of 9th, 10th, and 11th graders; students are welcome to attend. There will be time for questions.

    Date:   Tuesday, May 1, 2018
    Time:  5:30 p.m. - 7:00 p.m.
    Location: Columbia University, Office of Work/Life, 516 W. 112th St. – between Amsterdam and Broadway
    (Between “Lionsgate” apartments and Christian Science Reading Room)
    Presenters:  Joanna May, Associate Dean & Director of Admissions, Columbia College, Columbia University and Christina Lopez, Director of Admissions, Barnard College.
    Register

WELLNESS
Mindful Practice
Mindfulness meditation is a technique of focus, calm and insight, and a skill that can be learned. Through this six-week mindfulness training course participants will observe how stress unfolds in their lives, their responses to it, and how mindfulness practice can ameliorate it. Participants will learn and practice a variety of mindfulness techniques on an entry level, including loving-kindness meditation and mindful movement. Classes also incorporate group discussions.

There is a $75 enrollment fee for the full course.  If you are no longer able to participate in the course, please cancel your registration by 12:00 p.m. Monday, March 5 to receive a full refund.  There is a minimum enrollment of 10 and a maximum enrollment of 20 people. 
Participants should bring a mat or towel for the training program (not necessary for the first session). This program is limited to Columbia faculty and staff.

Six-week Mindfulness Practice Training
Dates:  Tuesdays, March 6 - April 10, 2018
Time:  5:30 -7:00 p.m.
Location: Columbia University, Office of Work/Life, 516 W. 112th St. – between Amsterdam and Broadway
(Between “Lionsgate” apartments and Christian Science Reading Room) 
Instructor: Polly Wheat, M.D., retired Executive Director, CUMC Student Health Service, has taught mindfulness meditation for more than 20 years.  
Register

    Set the Dinner Table, the EAT 5 Way
    Join us as we share and explore innovative dinner recipes, meal preparation techniques, basic cooking skills—and more. The EAT 5 initiative is designed to help you integrate more fruits and vegetables into your diet and get you closer to reaching the goal of eating five cups per day. This interactive nutrition workshop offers a food demonstration with samples, and take home recipes. This program is limited to Columbia faculty and staff.  

    Date: Tuesday, March 13, 2018
    Time:  12:00 – 12:45 p.m.
    Location: Columbia University, Office of Work/Life, 516 W. 112th St. – between Amsterdam and Broadway
    (Between “Lionsgate” apartments and Christian Science Reading Room)
    Presenter:  Daniela Neman, Registered Dietitian Nutritionist and Wellness Specialist, United Healthcare/Optum
    Register

    AND

    Date:  Wednesday, March 14, 2018
    Time:  4:00 – 4:45 p.m.
    Location: Columbia University Medical Center Campus, 701 W. 168th St., Hammer Building, LL202
    Presenter:  Daniela Neman, Registered Dietitian Nutritionist and Wellness Specialist, United Healthcare/Optum
    Register

    Citi Bike Street Skills
    Bicycling is a great way to get to and from work. It’s fun, great for your health, and is frequently the fastest way to commute in New York City.

    Thinking of joining or recently joined Citi Bike? Citi Bike Street Skills is an off-bike, interactive presentation offered by Bike New York, covering the essentials of how to navigate the Citi Bike system and get the most out of those now-ubiquitous blue bikes.

    Additional class content includes:
    • Rules of the road
    • How to avoid common road hazards
    • Where to ride on the road
    • How to safely change lanes
    • Basic traffic principles

    The League of American Bicyclists has recognized Columbia University as a Bronze Bicycle Friendly University℠ and a Silver Bicycle Friendly Business℠ for its efforts toward supporting bicycling. Participant in this workshop will receive a free 24-hour Citi Bike pass, worth $12+tax!

    Date: Wednesday, April 4, 2018
    Time: 12:00 p.m. - 1:00 p.m. 
    Location: Columbia University, Morningside Campus, Low Library, Burden Room 206
    Presenter:  Certified Bicycling Instructor, Bike New York
Register
     
    Sounds of Well-Being: A Campus Music Break
    Found in every known culture, past and present, music has a beneficial and powerful effect upon our well-being. Music not only energizes us, but can calm and inspire us.
    Join us to refresh between meetings or class with live, mid-day, music performances by our talented musicians from Columbia University’s Music Performance Program. 

Events are free and sponsored by the Office of Work/Life, Columbia Health, and Columbia University's Music Performance Program. For additional mid-day, indoor live music performances, enjoy Mid-Day Music @ Columbia, Wednesdays at 1pm, Faculty House.

    Dates:  Thursday, April 5, 2018 (during National Public Health Week)
    (Note that in the event of rain, the performance will be cancelled.) 
    Time:  12:00 – 12:45 p.m.
    Location: Low Plaza
    Genre: Classical, Jazz, World, Folk

    AND

    Thursday, April 12, 2018
    (Note that in the event of rain, the performance will be cancelled.) 
    Time:  12:00 – 12:45 p.m.
    Location: Low Plaza
    Genre: Classical, Jazz, World, Folk
Register

    Walk to Wellness
    Walk to Wellness is a free, instructor-led walking program on the Morningside, Manhattanville, and Medical Center campuses to help you incorporate more physical activity into your workday. Join us for kick-off walks featuring a group walk, dynamic stretches, and wellness swag bags. Stay connected with our weekly emails offering workout tips and program highlights including strength training workouts, healthy snacks, and more!
    Walk to Wellness is collaboration between the Office of Work/Life, Dodge Fitness Center and PlusOne. This program is limited to Columbia faculty and staff.

    Please visit the website for more information about the program. 

    Medical Center Campus
    Instructor-Led Lunchtime Walk Details:
Kick-off Walk: Monday, April 16, 2018
    *Walks continue on Mondays/Wednesdays until final walk on Wednesday, June 6, 2018
    Time: 1:00 – 2:00 p.m.
    Meet-Up Location: meet at the Garden Courtyard in front of the service building entrance
    Register (CUMC)

    Morningside Campus
    Instructor-Led Lunchtime Walk Details:
Kick-Off Walk: Monday, April 16, 2018
    *Walks continue on Mondays/Wednesdays until final walk on Wednesday, June 6, 2018
    Time: 1:00 – 2:00 p.m.
    Meet-Up Location: Alma Mater on the steps of Low Library
    Register (Morningside)

    Manhattanville Campus
    Instructor-Led Lunchtime Walk Details:
Kick-Off Walk: Tuesday, April 17, 2018
    *Walks continue on Tuesdays/Thursdays until final walk on Thursday, June 7, 2018
    Time: 1:00 – 2:00 p.m.
    Meet-Up Location: West Harlem Piers, River Walk at 132nd Street
    Register (Manhattanville)

Eat Well Columbia
Whether you are using catering services, ordering from local restaurants, or hosting a potluck, this workshop will provide guidance on how to easily incorporate healthier food and beverage choices into your next campus meeting or event.
This workshop is designed for campus event planners, staff responsible for planning the food and/or agendas for meetings, or any campus member interested in making your next meeting healthier and more productive. Join us to learn how you can support Columbia’s commitment to healthier and sustainable food and beverage options on campus.

Date: Thursday, May 10, 2018
Time: 1:00 p.m. - 1:45 p.m.  
Location: Columbia University, Morningside Campus, Low Library, Burden Room 206
    Presenter:  Deborah Ndao, MPH, Director of Wellness in the Office of Work/Life and Daniela Neman, Registered Dietitian Nutritionist and Wellness Specialist, United Healthcare/Optum
Register

AND

Date: Tuesday, May 15, 2018 (CANCELLED - We invite you to attend the May 10th workshop - see above for details)
Time: 4:00 p.m. - 4:45 p.m.  
Location: Columbia University, Medical Center Campus, 701 W. 168th St., Hammer Building, LL207
Presenter:  Deborah Ndao, MPH, Director of Wellness in the Office of Work/Life and Daniela Neman, Registered Dietitian Nutritionist and Wellness Specialist, United Healthcare/Optum

Weight Watchers at Work
Join Weight Watchers at Work and learn how to manage your weight with group support and private weigh-ins.  

There is a Weight Watchers at Work series currently underway, which you can join at any time!  Membership for Weight Watchers at Work series includes “At Work” meetings at on the Medical Center campus as well as access to community meetings and eTools online.  Payment to Weight Watchers will be prorated for the remaining time left in the series. (Payment plans are available.)  

Date: Wednesdays
Time: 5:15 – 5:45 p.m.
Location: Columbia University Medical Center Campus, Reemtsma Conference Room, Milstein Building, 7th Floor, Room 7-213
Presenter: Weight Watchers Meeting Leader
More Information

    Ergonomic Workstation Set-Up
    Ergonomics is the science of fitting the workplace conditions and job demands to the capabilities of the working population.  The goal of ergonomics is to make work more comfortable and to improve both health and productivity. In this workshop, you will learn tips and techniques about setting up your computer workstation so that you can perform your job functions in a manner that will avoid ergonomic risk factors. Monthly workshops are sponsored by the department of Environmental Health and Safety. To see the complete schedule and register, please visit the EH&S website
Dates: Monthly
    Time: 12:00 p.m. – 1:00 p.m.
    Location: Offered at Morningside, CUMC, and Manhattanville campuses on a rotating basis.  Check EH&S website for more details.
Presenter: Environmental Health and Safety professional, Columbia University