Skip to main content

Secondary navigation:

Carroll School of Management

History and Purpose of Portico

Portico (MH100) is a three-credit course for first year students in the Carroll School of Management. The course offers the first year undergraduate business student a unique opportunity to

  • develop a nuanced method for recognizing and responding to the ethical challenges of contemporary business;
  • situate contemporary business within the global and historical perspective;
  • learn about business through engagement with faculty and practitioners;
  • raise questions about personal aspirations and the opportunities available in the world of work.

In 2005, Dean Andrew C. Boynton became dean of the Carroll School of Management at Boston College. In a letter to faculty and alumni he stated that "we must more effectively embed into the curriculum and into the minds and hearts of our students the enduring concepts underlying Jesuit and Catholic values of education." With this vision in mind, an interdisciplinary team of faculty and staff from throughout Boston College were brought together to discuss the Carroll School curriculum. The product of their conversations was Portico.

  • 2005 - Dean Boynton begins tenure as dean of the Carroll School. His vision includes undergraduate excellence, ethics in the curriculum, and an Ignatian concept of leadership within Carroll School undergraduates.
  • 2006 to 2008 - An interdisciplinary team of faculty is gathered to discuss the Carroll School undergraduate curriculum. A freshman seminar is designed. The team names it Portico, symbolizing the formational and developmental aspirations of the course.
  • Spring 2008 - The Educational Policy Committee votes to authorize two pilot sections of Portico for Fall 2008.
  • Summer 2008 - A syllabus is finalized and a group of students register for two pilot sections.
  • Fall 2008 - Portico is officially piloted in the 2008-2009 academic year. Professor Richard Spinello and Dean Richard Keeley teach the original two sections of Portico.
  • Fall 2009 - The entire Carroll School class of 2013 enrolls in the required seminar, Portico. 505 students each take one of 23 sections of the course. 
    Spring/Summer 2010 - Portico team of faculty meet to refine the course for the class of 2014. During the summer, students meet with their Portico advisor during orientation.