Accessing a Lactation Room

Columbia provides Lactation Rooms to support nursing mothers returning to work, school, or campus.  Each room offers a clean, secure, and private space to express breast milk. All lactation rooms are equipped with a table and chair, and lock from the inside; some contain refrigerators and sinks. If a sink is not in the room, there is one close by. If you use a room where a refrigerator is not provided, we recommend bringing a cooler to store your breast milk. Additionally there are Medela hospital-grade breast pumps provided in each room; accessories will need to be provided by each individual user and can be purchased from the Office of Work/Life (details below). Women may access lactation rooms only for the purposes of expressing, storing, and collecting breast milk. 

Getting Started

Please contact the Office of Work/Life at 212-854-8019 to request access to the campus Lactation Rooms. It is best to do this at least ten days in advance of your need of the room. If possible, however, we will do our best to accommodate same and next-day requests. Access is provided either by a key pad code or by card swipe using your CUID. Please note: Access codes are changed periodically to ensure appropriate access and safety. The Office of Work/Life will communicate to all current users about the change in access in advance.

Each Lactation Room is equipped with a Medela Symphony electric, hospital-grade pump. You will need to bring your own attachments for the pump; these are available in one package (Symphony Double Pumping Kit). You can purchase the double pumping kit for the Medela Symphony through the Office of Work/Life. Please contact us for more information. You can also purchase the kit from these online retailers:

Or visit the Medela website to find a local store.

You may want to review the Symphony pump instructions before your first visit. Breastfeeding mothers may bring their own pump to and from the Lactation Room on a daily basis, but will be responsible for securing it against theft or use by others.

Note: Breastfeeding equipment is eligible for reimbursement through a flexible spending account. Please read the specific eligibility requirements outlined by the IRS for more information.

Refrigeration/storage is provided in some, but not all, Lactation Rooms, so be prepared to store your breast milk. Columbia is not responsible for the security or integrity of breast milk stored in or outside of the lactation room refrigerator.

In the Rooms

  • Medela Symphony hospital-grade pumps are provided in each Lactation Room.
  • In order to use the pumps provided in each room, you will need to purchase the necessary attachments. We recommend that you purchase the Medela Symphony Double Pumping Kit.
  • If there are no coolers or refrigerators in the Lactation Room that you plan to use, you may want to bring a cooler with ice to store your milk. Please review the information in the Lactation Room Locations section below to see what is provided in each Lactation Room.
  • Some Lactation Rooms contain more than one pump, so have curtains in place for privacy.
  • In single use spaces, make sure to lock the Lactation Room door from the inside when you are using it so that you will not be bothered while pumping.

Everyone is expected to clean up after each time in a room, especially when using the on-site pump equipment. This is not only out of respect for the next user, but to prevent contamination and illness transmission. Please allow enough time within a visit to clean the pump equipment of breast milk spills. Each user should allow enough time, within a visit, to clean the pump equipment of breast milk spills and dispose of trash properly. Antibacterial sprays/wipes and paper towels are provided for cleaning.

Upon accessing the room, slide the sign to IN USE to alert others that someone is in the room. Slide the sign back to VACANT when you leave the room unoccupied. Please respect the privacy of all lactation room users by knocking prior to typing in the access code for the rooms. Do not prop open the door at any time.

Lactation Room Locations

Follow the links below for maps and detailed information about lactation rooms on each campus:

Morningside Campus

Medical Center Campus

Additional Campus Locations and Other Information

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Morningside Campus 

* A scheduling calendar is available to reserve time in these rooms (Carman, Mudd, Jerome Greene, and Uris).  Contact the Office of Work/Life, worklife@columbia.edu, for instructions on accessing the calendar to reserve time.

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Medical Center Campus

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Additional Campus Locations and Other Information

* Access to this room is limited to employees at The School.

Information About Additional Lactation Room Spaces

If you need a Lactation Room in a building south of Morningside Campus including the Columbia Doctors building on W. 51st street, contact the Office of Work/Life and we will work to find you a private room to express milk.

Campbell Sports Center Lactation Room
There is a lactation room on the 3rd floor of the Campbell Sports Center at Baker Field Athletic Center, 218th St and Broadway. Women must bring their own pump and cooler for milk storage.  Please check in at the reception desk when entering the building.

Barnard College Lactation Room
Barnard College Human Resources maintains a lactation room on the first floor of Milbank. This room is equipped with a breast pump and a refrigerator. There is a sink in a nearby bathroom.

  • Please contact HR for the key pad access code at (212-854-2551) or HR@barnard.edu

Teachers College Lactation Room
There is a lactation room on the first floor of Thompson Hall at Teachers College. Access is provided through the President's Office at Teachers College.  Please visit this webpage for more information about the room and how to access.

New York Presbyterian Lactation Rooms

Visit this webpage or contact Allison Douglas, manager of Health and Wellbeing at New York Presbyterian for more information.