Double Discovery Student Organization (DDSO)

Columbia College and Barnard College undergraduates volunteering with DDC automatically become part of The Double Discovery Student Organization (DDSO), an  official Columbia University student group. These volunteers help promote DDC’s mission to increase high school graduation, enrollment and completion rates for first-generation college-bound youth from low income communities in Harlem and Washington Heights.   

In addition to serving as a volunteer hub for students of all majors and interests who want to lay the groundwork for sustainable, equitable future societies, societies that place particular emphasis on their educational systems, DDSO also oversees an undergraduate education forum and pre-professional education society. Its education forum is composed of members of broad expertise and who want to learn from the ideas of their peers while contributing what they know to construct a more equitable future for all.

By holding weekly group meetings, hosting monthly guest speaker sessions with professionals ranging from classroom educators to grassroots activists, and by connecting Columbia students of diverse backgrounds and areas of study with one another, DDSO gives undergrads the opportunity to intellectually engage with the realities and possibilities of educational systems in the US and beyond. 

DDSO also provides resources and networking opportunities to undergraduates interested in pursuing careers in education. But most importantly, DDSO gives undergrads the opportunity to translate their ideas and passion into concrete action through tutoring and mentoring with Columbia's Double Discovery Center. In the coming years, DDSO will work to develop partnerships with other student groups on campus in order to strengthen the coalition of groups working with and for DDC.  

When you join the DDSO, you have the opportunity to step beyond Columbia campus and learn about the greater community and yourself. Being part of DDC’s 50-year legacy of exposing historically under-resourced students of Harlem and Washington Heights to the rigors of higher education while gaining a deeper understanding of the rich histories, experiences, and perspectives of low-income students and families, is an experience that stays with you for a lifetime.  It is the essence of DDC’s continued success that is rooted in our double discovery approach. 

Past volunteers have credited their work with the DDSO and DDC for advancing their understanding of education and igniting their passion for community engagement.