Sponsored Students

When an unrelated third party pays for a student's education at Columbia University, this is called sponsorship. The following are examples of different types of sponsors:

  • Employers
  • Educational institutions
  • Government agencies
  • Foundations
  • Grant providers
  • Other institution-based sources

Third-Party Billing Process for Students

To initiate third-party billing procedures so that the third-party sponsor is directly invoiced instead of the student, the student must follow these steps below:

The third party that will pay the sponsorship bill must include the following in their letter:

  • Third party’s official letterhead
  • Student’s name and nine-digit Columbia University identification number, also known as a PID (this number begins with the letter C) 
  • Outline of the educational costs that the sponsor will cover
  • Terms of the sponsorship
  • Billing address to be used for the invoice
  • Valid name, address, phone number, and email address of sponsor

Fill out and submit the Third-Party Billing Agreement online. You will be asked to upload a copy of the sponsorship letter during the submission of this form.

Be sure to save copies of the sponsorship letter and your agreement form in your personal records.

Third-Party Billing Process for Sponsors

To initiate third-party invoicing and on-time payment of charges, the sponsor must follow these steps below:

*Invoices are emailed to sponsors on behalf of the University through our vendor, Flywire Corporation, and from the email address [email protected]

*Sponsors must create a login to access the invoices and make payments through the vendor's portal.

*Sponsors must agree to use the portal in its entirety. If they cannot do so, Student Financial Services (SFS) will not issue invoices to them.

**The University reserves the right to make any exceptions to the above.

If a sponsor has not previously sponsored a student at Columbia, it must complete the sponsor verification process:

Columbia's sponsored billing platform will generate an email for the sponsors to access each term invoice upon creation.

To download a copy of the invoice schedule, please visit the document's library. 

Sponsored Billing Schedule 2024-2025

Sponsors are expected to pay Columbia University upon receipt of the invoice. Sponsor payment must be issued through the designated platform the University's authorized vendor provides. Sponsors are responsible for paying all wire transfer fees associated with the bank or wire service.

The University reserves the right to grant exceptions to this process upon review.

If students do not pay non-sponsored charges by the due date, late fees will be assessed. Please pay careful attention to the academic billing schedule. 

Student Responsibilities

At the beginning of each term, students are responsible for reviewing the terms of the sponsorship, the charges billed to the sponsor, and the payments made by the sponsor. Students must pay any portion of the bill not covered by the sponsor as outlined in the third-party billing agreement. Students can check their student account balances and pay non-sponsored charges through the QuikPAY system, which is accessible via Student Services Online (SSOL). Students are also expected to keep their addresses current in Student Services Online (SSOL).

Any changes to the sponsorship, or the sponsor's failure to meet the terms of the third-party agreement, should be reported via email to Student Financial Services. You can find our contact information below in the footer.