I am headed to Dogmatic as soon as I can (thanks for the link!)
On the topic of food, my favorite places near Columbia are Massawa (http://www.massawanyc.com/
), Bombay Frankie (http://www.bombayfrankie.com/
), Thai Market (http://www.yelp.com/biz/thai-market-new-york
), and Saji's (http://www.yelp.com/biz/sajis-new-york
). Massawa is an AMAZING Ethiopian place, but is way outside my budget, so it's best for special occasions. Bombay Frankie is good for take-out lunch/dinner (especially if you bring a friend, that way you can get 2 rotis for a better price), while Thai Market's delicious lunch specials make it worth the trip 10 blocks south of campus. Saji's used to be incredible, and although the quality has slipped in recent years, it's still good Japanese food at a good price (best for take-out, as the hole in the wall has about 6 cramped seats).
Also, West Place (on Amsterdam past 123rd) has $6 lunch specials, where you get to pick 3 dishes plus rice and either soup/soda. Just follow the parade of Chinese students heading out from the science departments around lunch-time. You can make it as healthy or unhealthy as you like, as they have sauteed bock choi and tofu dishes in addition to the standard American-Chinese fare.
Sun-Chan (http://www.yelp.com/biz/sun-chan-japane ... t-new-york
) is a decent, authentic Japanese place, too, but a bit expensive. Good when you want to go to dinner with friends but don't feel like taking the subway.
For quick, generic lunches, I also go to Che Bella for Pizza etc. and M2M Asian grocery store for their (non-Asian) lunch counter. For $5 you can get things like roast turkey and mashed potatoes or rice, with extras (plantains, avocado) only 50 cents each. (Construction workers usually eat it all up by 12:30, though, so you need to get there early.)
Morningisde Heights is pretty weak as far as food is concerned, but you can certainly make do, if you know where to go. Hopefully those of you new to the neighborhood will find my suggestions helpful!