Promoting diversity is a central focus of every aspect of the University’s endeavors. At Facilities and Operations, we are committed to local hiring and diversity across all aspects of our work – including the businesses we contract with, the workforce of our construction contractors and vendors, and our own staff.
If you are part of a certified minority-owned or woman-owned firm, or a firm that is located in the Columbia local catchment area (see map below), and are interested in doing business with Columbia, contact our Office of Construction Business Initiatives at MWLBEsupport@columbia.edu.
Need to become certified? Review the list of certifying agencies that Columbia University recognizes for minority- and woman-owned business enterprise certification.
For construction firms or workers looking for an opportunity to be a part of construction at Manhattanville, please visit the Manhattanville Jobs and Opportunities website for current bid opportunities and contacts.
CU Grow Vendor Development Program
The CU Grow Vendor Development Program is the core of a multi-dimensional approach to assisting minority-, women- and locally-owned firms by expanding their existing portfolio of business and contracts with large clients.
The Minority, Women and Local Construction Trade Certificate/Mentorship Program was designed to help minority-, women- and locally-owned business enterprises build capacity and earn contracting opportunities at the University and other large institutions.
In order to participate in contracting opportunities as a minority and/or women business enterprise, firms must be able to demonstrate that they are certified minority- or woman-owned business.
Typically, certification by established governmental and quasi-governmental agencies is required. Columbia accepts certifications from the agencies listed below:
- New York Empire State Development
- New York Metropolitan Transit Authority
- New York School Construction Authority
- New York City Department of Small Business Services
- Port Authority of New York/New Jersey
- Women's Business Enterprise National Council
- New York & New Jersey Minority Supplier Development Council
- Connecticut State Minority Business Enterprise
- New Jersey Minority/Women Certification (PDF)
In the event a firm is certified by an agency other than those listed above, the Office of Construction Business Initiatives may provide a waiver at its discretion.
WHAT IS LOCAL?
The University principally defines its "local" catchment area as those communities located in 13 zip codes in Harlem, Washington Heights and Inwood (10025, 10026, 10027, 10029, 10030, 10031, 10032, 10033, 10034, 10035, 10037, 10039 and 10040) and four zip codes within the South Bronx (10451, 10454, 10455 and 10474).
After successfully transitioning the program to an online format earlier this year due to the global pandemic, the fourth cohort of the CUFO-led CU Grow Vendor Development program concluded with a virtual graduation ceremony held the evening of December 9.
Tanya Pope, AVP of University Supplier Diversity, was among the expert panelists at a virtual event hosted by Inspire Enterprise, Inc., designed to support Black-owned businesses.
The CU Grow Vendor Development program hosted its third procurement event of 2020.