Contact:	Suzanne Trimel					For immediate release
		(212) 854-6579					March 25, 1998

Columbia Garners Standard & Poor's Top Credit Rating

Citing increased selectivity, an expanded endowment, successful fund- raising and effective financial strategies, Standard & Poor's Corp. announced on March 25 that it had upgraded Columbia University's debt rating from AA+ to AAA. "Standard & Poor's upgraded rating confirms the University's progress over the last several years in key areas," said John Masten, executive vice president for finance. "We're very pleased to see this." Only eight other universities have received Standard & Poor's top credit rating: the California Institute of Technology, Grinnell, Harvard, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Princeton, Rockefeller, Stanford and Yale. Columbia has held the top Aaa rating from Moody's Investors Services since 1988. Standard & Poor's cited several reasons for the upgrade, including the growing desirability and selectivity of the undergraduate and graduate programs, endowment growth fueled by both a strong investment market and a successful fund-raising campaign and effective financial management strategies employed in the University's operating and capital spending plans. 3.25.98 19,302