Flourishing in Beantown: An Insider’s Guide to Getting the Most out of Your Time at Boston University

With roots dating back to 1839, Boston University (BU) has evolved into one of the largest private research universities in the United States. BU offers a vibrant campus life in the heart of iconic Boston. For students seeking an enriching college experience, BU provides endless opportunities to learn, grow and thrive.


Welcome to Boston University, a leading private research institution with two primary campuses in the heart of Boston and programs around the world1. Whether you are a prospective, new, or current student, this guide will help you make the most of your time at BU and enjoy the vibrant and diverse city of Boston, also known as Beantown.

Academic Life:

Boston University offers more than 300 programs of study across 17 schools and colleges and the Faculty of Computing & Data Sciences. No matter what your academic interests and goals are, you will find a program that suits you and challenges you to grow intellectually and personally.

Campus Life:

Boston University has a vibrant and diverse campus life that offers something for everyone. Whether you live on campus or off campus, you will find a variety of ways to get involved, have fun, and make friends at BU.

City Life:

Boston is a historic and dynamic city that offers a wealth of cultural, recreational, and professional opportunities for BU students. Whether you are a history buff, a sports fan, a foodie, or a nature lover, you will find something to enjoy and discover in Boston.

Choosing Your Classes

With 17 schools and colleges, BU offers more than 250 degree programs for undergraduates. The most popular majors include Business, Communications, Health Sciences, Engineering and Political Science. BU is renowned for fields like journalism and music education.

BU’s Core Curriculum ensures exposure to humanities, social sciences, and natural sciences. Flexible course requirements allow customizing your program. Seek academic challenges and subjects sparking your curiosity. Utilize BU’s academic advising resources.

Getting Involved on Campus

With 300+ student organizations, BU buzzes with activities to join. Explore cultural/identity groups, community service clubs, performing arts, student government, and more. Attend campus events like TEDxBostonUniversity to engage with ideas.

Consider joining intramural or club sports teams. Try out for theater productions and a cappella groups. Find causes to rally around and make friends sharing your passions.

Exploring Boston

As a BU student, Boston becomes your playground. Stroll along the Charles River, cheer at Fenway Park, relax in the Public Garden, or tour Harvard and MIT. Visit Boston’s world-class museums like the Museum of Fine Arts. Experience the city’s vibrant food, arts, and culture scene.

Intern downtown in fields like finance, technology, healthcare, or government. Network with BU alumni thriving in Boston’s industries. Let this world-class city become your campus.

Work and Research Opportunities

BU offers ample opportunities to build your resume. Join research labs tackling innovations in nanotechnology, biomedical engineering, photonics and more. Take part in mentored internships for hands-on learning.

Apply your developing skills as a teaching assistant, peer advisor or orientation leader. Work a part-time job on or off-campus, networking while earning extra cash.

Wellness and Self-Care

Don’t neglect emotional and physical well-being amidst BU’s rigors. Make time for healthy habits and self-care, prioritizing sleep, exercise, and social connections. Meditate at the George Sherman Union meditation room. De-stress at FitRec, sampling group classes or shooting hoops.

Take advantage of BU’s Counseling Services, wellness coaching and other mental health resources. Take a breather going for walks along the Charles River or through sprawling Boston Common park.

Preparing for Your Future

BU Career Development Center helps students map out post-graduation plans, whether seeking jobs or grad school. Meet with career counselors and attend recruitment events to explore options and make connections.

Join professional associations like AdClub, PRSSA or AMA to build your network. Develop professionally relevant skills through case competitions. Capstone projects and faculty mentoring provide real-world experiences.

By engaging fully across academics, student life, Boston’s opportunities and more, you will thrive at BU and launch successfully beyond.


Boston University is a place where you can flourish academically, socially, and personally, and where you can experience the best of both worlds: a world-class education and a world-class city. By following this guide, you will be able to make the most of your time at BU and enjoy the many opportunities and benefits that BU and Boston have to offer.

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