The A to Z Guide to Boston College
Whether you’re visiting campus for the first time or returning to the Heights after many years, here are 26 things to know about Boston College.
Sure, freshmen have four more years before they hear that word, but it's good to know that the Boston College alumni community will always be there for them. The BC Alumni Association offers activities from lectures to chapter events, and we love having BC parents as part of our family.
Whether it's at a football game or a dance performance, students will see Baldwin — the Boston college mascot — all around campus. He loves high fives and dancing, so the next time you see him, throw out your hand or bust a move!
"CoRo" is a shortened (and much easier to text!) form of College Road. This part of campus is adjacent to Upper Campus and consists of three dorms: Roncalli, Welch, and Williams. Typically sophomores and sometimes freshmen live on CoRo.
D: Devlin 008
At some point, many prospective students and their parents visited the Admissions Office in Devlin Hall to hear firsthand how wonderful Boston College is. And once a new BC Eagle has made a nest in Chestnut Hill, Devlin will continue to be a part of their experience.
One of the largest lecture halls on campus is in Devlin: Devlin 008. There, along with 300 of their closest friends, students will take popular or introductory courses and attend events where big audiences are expected.
E: Eagle Escort
One of BC's best safety measures is the Eagle Escort program, which helps students traveling around campus at night. The service has a 24-hour contact number: 617-552-8888. Eagle Escort also functions as an infirmary shuttle and medical transport.
Arguably one of BC's most famous alumni, football legend Doug Flutie is still celebrated on campus. Check out the play that launched him onto the national stage. It's called the "Hail Mary" pass, and it's recreated in a statue in front of Alumni Stadium.
Another reason to remember Doug Flutie? Students use his name as an easy way to identify buildings on the Quad: Doug (Devlin), Flutie (Fulton), Likes (Lyons), Girls (Gasson), or "Doug Flutie Likes Girls."
G: Gasson Hall
Gasson Hall is arguably the most iconic building on campus and a treasure. It may not be a graduation requirement, but we're pretty sure that everyone needs to take at least one (if not several) photos of Gasson and its famed Golden Eagle statue while at BC. (And if you're posting the photo on Instagram, the hashtag "#gassongram" is a must!)
Gasson is home to one of the several chapels on campus that offer Mass during the week.
H: The Heights
You might hear people refer to BC as "The Heights." It's an apt nickname since BC was built on a hill and its students and alumni set goals that keep them "ever rising to new Heights." One of our student newspapers is also called The Heights, with print editions distributed every Monday and Thursday. Alumni and parents can keep track of what's happening on campus by visiting The Heights website.
I: Ice Cream
Like Gasson, White Mountain Creamery is a landmark for Boston College students. It's open until midnight, and BC students will often make the trek to this beloved ice cream parlor to get their favorite cold treats.
Just a short bit away in Newton Centre, J.P. Licks is a popular destination for freshmen living on Newton Campus.
The Society of Jesus at Boston College is integral to the BC experience. From teaching some of the most popular courses on campus to assisting with retreats or helping students discern their faith, Jesuits truly embody the Boston College mission.
BC offers some fantastic retreat programs for students. Freshmen can attend 48 Hours, which provides a way to meet new friends and reflect on the transition from high school to college. Meanwhile, HalfTime focuses on vocation and career path, asking three key questions that help students find their way.
Kairos is a spiritual three-day retreat where students are called to LT4 (Live the Fourth), encouraging students to take the virtues of the retreat with them beyond its conclusion on the fourth day. Students of all faiths are welcome and the waiting list can be long, so it's important for students to sign up early. Learn more about Kairos and other BC retreats.
Officially known as Corcoran Commons, this dining hall on Lower Campus is frequented primarily by sophomores, juniors, and seniors. It's also home to the Heights Room, where "Last Chance Mass" takes place every Sunday night at 10:15 p.m. Students of all faiths are welcome and as a result, it's usually standing room only.
N: Newton Campus
Newton Campus is the home of BC freshmen and also Boston College Law School. Students shouldn't worry about living "off campus" because even though they have to take the BC bus to Main Campus, they'll see familiar faces of those who are on a similar schedule and make friends with their fellow students. Newton has its own dining hall in Stuart Hall, which helps create a mini-community for the approximately 800 first-year students. Newton is also home to soccer and field hockey fields.
O: O’Connell House
Is O'Connell haunted? There are rumors, and most Eagles think so because of the long history of this castle-like brick building that stands out on Upper Campus. Inside are cozy rooms packed with TVs, couches, study space, and even a piano. There's also a laundry room in the basement.
P: Parents' Weekend
Parents' Weekend is loaded with family fun! From the fabulous sounds of Pops on the Heights to the battle on the gridiron in Alumni Stadium, there's a lot that BC families can enjoy.
And since it's Parents' Weekend, there are some expectations that students may already have in place: If parents would like to re-stock the food, help with the laundry, or take their BC student out to a nice restaurant, they'll find abundant resources in the area.
Interested in getting more involved? Join the Parents' Leadership Council.
Q: Quonset Hut
A gymnasium located on Newton Campus, the "Hut" is home to treadmills, StairMasters, and more. Think of it as a mini Rec Plex (the gymnasium complex located on Main Campus) for Newton Campus residents.
R: The Rat
The Rat is the "colorful" name of a dining hall in the basement of Lyons Hall. It's a great place to grab a hot dog, sandwich, or other quick bite between classes. See what's on the menu at any of the BC dining halls.
S: Student Services
At Student Services, students can change their major, get a new BC ID (the Eagle-One Card), and pay their bills. The line tends to be long between classes, so the best time to go can be halfway through class sessions. This would be around the half-hour mark on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays (classes are 50 minutes long). Course times differ on Tuesdays and Thursdays, so plan accordingly.
T: The T
Boston is home to the first subway system in the U.S., known affectionately as the "T." Boston College is the last stop on the B Line train, a branch of the Green Line subway. At most T stations the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA) provides reloadable "Charlie Cards" used for boarding. Students can add value to their Charlie Card when they want to head into Boston. For frequent riders, discount passes can be purchased through Student Services.
U: Upper Campus
"We walk" is the motto of the 1,200 freshmen living on Upper Campus. Walk around Upper on any gorgeous day, and you'll see Frisbee tosses, basketball games, and students lounging on the lawn.
BC alumni, students, faculty, and staff strive to be "men and women for others," and Boston College offers countless ways to give back to the community. From 4Boston (a weekly service organization) to Appalachia Volunteers (a program that is committed to working with the poverty-stricken populace of the U.S. and which offers an annual service trip during spring break), opportunities abound for students to get involved. Every September, BC has a Student Involvement Fair where students can find service groups and other clubs to join.
W: Work Study
Is your student looking to make some extra money while on campus? BC posts job listings for students at www.bc.edu/studentemployment.
We're being a little creative with the spelling of this section, but it's important to know that BC offers many ways for students to get support. The Connors Family Learning Center in O'Neill Library is one of the best examples of this. Students can receive free tutoring by grad students and teaching assistants.
The Boston College Career Center is also a gem on campus. Students can make appointments with career counselors to get advice on résumés, cover letters, networking, and more. Popping into the Career Center frequently is a good idea in order to see the latest postings about career events and companies that will be visiting the campus.
Boston College Men's Ice Hockey Coach Jerry York is the epitome of what it means to be a Boston College graduate. On and off the ice, he represents BC with excellence, demonstrates what it means to be a champion, and teaches our student-athletes what it means to be "men and women for others." Our men's ice hockey team has won four national championships under his leadership (2001, 2008, 2010, and 2012) and is a contender every season.
Our Boston College student-athletes illustrate BC's motto "Ever to Excel" both on and off the field. With coaches like Jerry York (the "winningest coach in college hockey history") to lead our young men and women, we truly can feel proud to be Eagles.
Zipcar has partnered with Boston College and offers BC students a discounted annual membership. With many nearby locations, students can pick up a Zipcar for interviews, errands, fun day trips, or local shopping trips—there's a Target in Watertown not far from BC to restock on snacks and detergent! Many students hop into a Zipcar for a visit home on the weekend.
Learn more about ZipCar at BC.
Looking for more tips about life at Boston College? Check out 20 Things to Know for Your First Year at BC, as Told by Boston College Alumni.