Boston College is proud to contribute to our host communities of Boston, Newton, Dover and Brookline through notable programs and events. Many students, staff, and faculty are active volunteers in our neighboring communities. They contribute their time to a wide range of activities including education and literacy programs, youth sports, neighborhood development initiatives, and the arts.
In conjunction with the Athletics Department, the Office of Governmental & Community Affairs provides tickets to residents of Allston-Brighton to all Boston College home football, basketball and hockey games. Whenever possible, tickets are also donated to youth sports organizations and local community groups to support their charitable activities.
Mayor's Cup Hockey
Each January, Boston College donates ice time to the City of Boston for the Mayor's Cup Hockey Tournament, providing an opportunity for youngsters of all ages throughout the City of Boston to compete at the squirt, peewee, and bantam hockey levels.
For over 20 years, Boston College has hosted a youth karate exhibition in Conte Forum’s Power Gym where students of varying ages assemble to demonstrate the skills and agility they have learned throughout the year in their programs. Students come from Allston, Brighton, Roxbury and Newton and the event is free and open to the public.
BC Race to Educate
Boston College’s Race to Educate is a 5K run/walk fundraiser in support of Saint Columbkille Partnership School in Brighton, MA. This event raises money to provide an opportunity for students to receive a Catholic education by funding need-based scholarships to students.
BC MBA 5K
BC’s MBA 5K, organized by Boston College’s Carroll School of Management graduate students, is a race that raises money in support of the private, non-profit organization Youth Enrichment Services. YES provides Boston children and teens with affordable and impactful sports-based youth development and leadership programming.
Brian Honan 5K
The Brian J. Honan Charitable Fund was established to carry on Brian's commitment to the causes that he championed throughout the course of his life. With funds raised from the road race, the Charitable Fund has been able to support and foster local and national programs that support education, recreation, housing and healthcare.
Welles Crowther Red Bandanna Run
The Welles Crowther Red Bandanna Run is a 5K fundraising race to support the Welles Remy Crowther Charitable Trust established by the Crowther Family as a way to honor Welles and keep his memory alive by benefitting young people through scholarships and support of various organizations. Each year, the Red Bandanna Run continues to bring together friends, family and members of the BC community from all over the country as a way to respect and celebrate the life of this 9/11 hero.
Civic & Community Partnerships
Allston Board of Trade and Brighton Board of Trade
As a long-standing and active member of the Allston-Brighton community, Boston College supports the local business community by administrators serving as board members or in leadership positions on the boards of trade, providing operational support and contributing financially to charitable events and targeted initiatives aimed at helping the business community succeed. The Director of Community Affairs currently serves as the President of the Allston Board of Trade and as a board member on the Brighton Board of Trade.
Allston Village Main Streets and Brighton Main Streets
As a long-standing and active member of the Allston-Brighton community, Boston College supports Brighton Main Streets and Allston Village Main Streets in their mission to empower entrepreneurs, support small businesses, create a thriving local business district and provide community events and programming for residents and businesses. Administrators serve as board members or in leadership positions on the main streets organizations, offer operational support and contribute financially to charitable events and initiatives. The Director of Government Relations currently serves as the President and as a board member of Brighton Main Streets.
Boston Police Advisory Committee
The Director of Community Affairs at Boston College serves as a member of the Boston Police Department District 14 Advisory Board that meets to discuss police related matters impacting the Allston-Brighton neighborhoods. The Committee meets bi-annually or as needed.
Brighton High School Advisory Board
The Director of Community Affairs, BC administrators and faculty play active roles on the Brighton High School Advisory Board. BC supports the high school by placing large numbers of student teachers from the Lynch School of Education in the classroom and in various support service programs, partnering with the school on the Private Industry Council summer employment program and providing financial assistance to eligible students through the Allston-Brighton and Woods College of Advancing Studies Community Scholarship programs.
Kiwanis Club of Allston-Brighton
The Director of Community Affairs serves as a member of the Allston-Brighton Kiwanis Club. The Kiwanis Club is dedicated to improving the lives of children in the community and service is at the heart of every club’s mission. Through charitable events such as the “Kiwanis Star” singing competition and the annual Kiwanis Derby, the Allston-Brighton chapter has been able to raise funds for local non-profit organizations such as the Franciscan Hospital for Children, the Oak Square YMCA Summer Camp Scholarship Program and St. Joseph’s Prep High School “Support A Scholar” Program.
Taste of Off-Campus
Held in September, the Taste of Off-Campus is the signature welcome back event of the fall semester for the BC off-campus community. The OGCA works with the Office of Off-Campus Student Life and the Office of Student Conduct to bring local restaurants to BC, where they have the opportunity to set up booths and provide free samples for students, staff, and neighbors to enjoy.
Jackson Mann Community Center
Since 1993, the Director of Community Affairs has served on the Board of Directors at the Jackson Mann Community Center advocating and supporting the Center’s mission to provide adult education programming, teen programming in the Faneuil Housing Development and after-school child care and summer youth camps. Boston College students also volunteer at the various programs offered at the Jackson Mann Community Center.
BC Campus Community Partnership Initiative (CCPI)
Established in 2006, the Boston College CCPI's mission is to promote communication and working relationships between the University, the community and the City of Boston. CCPI meets twice a semester and is comprised of administrators from the OGCA, the Offices of Student Affairs, Student Conduct, Residential Life and Off-Campus Student Life, Boston College Police, neighbors, landlords and property managers, as well as representatives from Boston Police District-14, Boston Inspectional Services Department, Mayor’s Office of Neighborhood Services, and City Council staff. Through dialogue, education, prevention and problem-solving, the group addresses issues of student behavior, health, safety, accountability, respectful decision-making and quality of life issues in the neighborhood. Together, CCPI works to achieve shared responsibility, respect and civility among all community members.
Road to the Right Track
Boston College has been active in providing space during the winter months to the Road to the Right Track program. This program is run by Frank Hughes from the Boston Police, D-14 station serving the Allston-Brighton community. The track program involves youth from the Allston-Brighton area training in all aspects of the sport. It ranges from nutrition, mental preparation, and short runs around the Chestnut Hill Reservoir as well as other locations in the area. The program prepares young people to compete in road races like the Brian Honan 5K, BC Race to Educate, Oak Square YMCA 5K and others. Participants are also exposed to a variety of speakers including an admissions counselor from BC as well as our Chief of Police and former Boston Police Commissioner William Evans.
Cultural Events & Programs
Pops on the Heights
Each fall, Boston College provides 75 complimentary tickets to the Allston, Brighton, and Newton communities for the annual "Pops on the Heights" concert, which takes place every September at Boston College's Conte Forum.
Each spring, the Boston College Arts Festival brings the community together to celebrate the arts. This annual spring event showcases over 1,000 student and faculty artists in the performing, visual, and literary arts. The entire community is invited to over 30 free events that include drama, dancing, symphonies, jazz, visual arts presentations and children's activities.
Neighborhood Night at the Theater
As part of the Arts Festival, the Office of Governmental and Community Affairs distributes complimentary tickets to the Theater Department's spring presentation right before the Arts Festival begins. Community members are invited to enjoy a private reception before the show. Please contact our office for more info.
McMullen Museum of Art
The McMullen Museum aims to cultivate learning, celebrate artistic excellence, and explore the visual traditions of diverse cultures. The McMullen offers exhibition-related programs and resources for diverse audiences of all ages on campus, in the Greater Boston area, and beyond. Located at 2101 Commonwealth Avenue. Please visit The McMullen Musuem website for more information and current exhibits.
The Office of Governmental and Community Affairs as well as the Lynch School of Education and Human Development at Boston College are involved in a number of ongoing partnerships with the Boston Public Schools. Boston College faculty, staff, and students provide a wide range of services and benefits to Boston Public School students and faculty.
St. Columbkille Partnership School
The Saint Columbkille Partnership School is a Catholic elementary school located in the Brighton section of Boston, Massachusetts. In 2006, Saint Columbkille Parish, the Archdiocese of Boston, and Boston College combined their resources in educational leadership, finance and enrollment management, student development, academic practice and research, facilities management, and religious formation to create a flagship Catholic elementary school in Boston.
Educational experts coordinated by Boston College faculty are collaborating to implement state-of-the-art approaches to teaching from the early childhood program through middle school, using evidence-based research curriculum to teach math, science, literacy, and other subjects, in addition to working with bilingual students and children with moderate special needs.
City Connects (CCNX) is a school-based, systemic collaboration among Boston Public Schools, more than 100 community agencies, and Boston College. CCNX is designed to promote strengths in academic, social-emotional, and physical well-being and alleviate barriers to learning in elementary school students using our model of optimized student support. Our mission is to have children engage and learn in school by connecting each child with a tailored set of prevention, intervention, and enrichment services that he or she needs to thrive.
Established by Boston College in 1987, College Bound is a program for culturally and racially diverse students from the Boston Public Schools that focuses on increasing their access to and retention in four-year institutions of higher education. Boston College students work with high school youths to refine their academic skills and supplement their high school programs with Saturday enrichment classes both on the BC campus and in their communities. The program also fosters leadership skills and parental engagement, and provides career advisement, college application assistance and financial aid guidance.
The Donovan Urban Teaching Scholars Programs
The Donovan Urban Teaching Scholars program is an intensive one-year master’s degree program in teacher preparation. Each year, the program recruits and supports a diverse cohort of up to 30 graduate students, and provides them with an academically challenging education specifically responsive to the concerns and needs of urban students, families, schools and communities.
Continuing Education Programs
Whether you’re a returning graduate, a practitioner looking to expand your skillset or renew a license, or a community member interested in personal development, Boston College Continuing Education can connect you with high-quality educational programming that meets your needs. From workshops and certificate programs to online courses and educational travel, our offerings make it easy for you to accelerate your career or pursue new knowledge.
Please note that the BC Beyond Lifelong Learning Coffee and Conversation Series has been rescheduled for fall 2020.
Let's Get Ready Program
Established in 2006, the Boston College-Let's Get Ready College Program offers a free 10-week curriculum that includes SAT prep, college application guidance, financial aid planning, college visits and mentoring services to 30-40 first-generation high school seniors and juniors from Allston-Brighton and other neighborhoods of Boston. Through this near-peer mentoring model, trained Boston College students serve as virtual access coaches and instructors providing weekly SAT classes over Zoom and building strong mentoring relationships with students. After completing the program, 75% of LGR students increased their SAT scores by an average of 80 points and LGR students enroll in college at significantly higher rates than peers from similar backgrounds.
Due to the pandemic, the program transitioned to a virtual model in 2020. This innovative virtual model continues today providing access for more students, as well as greater flexibility and operational efficiency. The Office of Governmental & Community Affairs assists LGR with administrative oversight, instructor and coach recruitment efforts, as well as contributing financial and in-kind support for the program.
Read Aloud Program
What is the Read Aloud Program?
The Read Aloud Program is a partnership among the faculty and staff of Boston College, the Boston Public Schools and Boston Partners in Education. The program's volunteers are assigned to read to students once a month at Brighton area schools including Thomas Edison and St. Columbkille Partnership School. Volunteers have the choice of reading to any class ranging from Kindergarten to Grade 5.
What is the time commitment?
The Read Aloud Program assigns each volunteer to a team comprised of four members dedicated to work with one classroom throughout the year. Each classroom is visited once per week by a member of the team for 20 minutes. Each volunteer is responsible for one of the four sessions per month.
The one hour monthly commitment per volunteer includes travel time between Boston College and the school. The schools usually schedule readings between 11:30 am and 12:30 pm. Readings begin in early November and run until the end of the academic year.
What kinds of books are read?
Readings can be selected from picture books for younger students or a succession of chapters in more advanced books for older students. Readings can be timed to the season of the year, special holidays, historic events, current affairs or can be taken from a recommended book list.
Faculty and staff from all areas of the campus participate in the program. No prior classroom experience is necessary. A training is offered before the program starts, led by a Boston Partners in Education team and the coordinator of the program. This event includes handouts, updated booklists, tips, techniques, signing of forms required from those working in a school setting, and discussion of the logistics of the program.
Volunteering in the Read Aloud takes very little time, yet it is tremendously rewarding. The response from everyone involved in this program, volunteers, teachers and students has been increasingly encouraging and positive since the program's inception in 1995. However, the success of this program depends on the continuous dedication of its participants.
Will there be training?
The Read Aloud training session will take place on Wednesday, October 27, 2021 from 12 pm to 1:30 pm in the Walsh Hall function room on Lower Campus. Lunch will be served. New volunteers are required to attend the training and returning volunteers can participate, but it is not required.
How do I volunteer?
If you're either a returning reader or a new volunteer for the Read Aloud Program, please complete and submit the form below.
For further information, please contact Laura Bitran at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 617-552-4787.
For volunteer opportunities involving reading, tutoring, or mentoring please contact:
- Volunteer and Service Learning Center at 617-552-1317 or email@example.com
- Boston College Neighborhood Center at 617-552-0445 or firstname.lastname@example.org
In FY20, 69% of BC undergraduates received financial assistance totaling $182.4 million in scholarships and grants, of which $169.7 million was in the form of direct instituitional aid provided by Boston College. As a need-blind university that meets the full-demonstrated need of all undergraduates, BC is committed to providing access to students from diverse socioeconomic backgrounds, and ensuring they have the resources and support services that enable them to finish their degrees.
In FY20, 249 Boston undergraduate students received $9.8 million in institutional grant aid and 103 Newton undergraduate students received $4.3 million in assistance. For information on the Allston-Brighton Undergraduate Scholarship Program and the Woods College of Advancing Studies Scholarship Program, established under the University's Institutional Master Plan with the City of Boston, please view the content below.
A recent study published in The Chronicle of Higher Education, ranked Boston College among the top 30 private, non-profit colleges and universities that are the most generous to their financially neediest students.
Boston College also provides resources through the Learning to Learn and the Montserrat Offices to support and retain high-need students and help them get the most out of their BC experience, both inside and outside the classroom.
Boston College’s 4Boston program, comprising more than 300 undergraduate students, is a major volunteer initiative that services 18 community agencies in the City of Boston. Named for the four hours each student provides on a weekly basis, 4Boston volunteers average more than 80,000 service hours per academic year. Placements in Brighton include the Commonwealth Tenants Association After-School Program, the Jackson/Mann Adult Education Program and the Franciscan Children’s Hospital Residential Assessment Program.
Oak Square YMCA
Boston College assists the YMCA by providing student volunteers for a variety of projects and programs at the facility. As needed, Boston College also makes available its campus facilities for YMCA programming requests.
Boston College’s PULSE program is a national model for service learning that integrates academics with a service internship at one of 51 community service placements in the Greater Boston area. The 400 students involved in the program volunteer between eight and twelve hours each week during the academic year at a variety of non-profit organizations. Locations of service include Project Bread, the Pine Street Inn, and Rosie's Place. In Brighton, students serve at Crittendon Hastings House, Commonwealth Tenants Association and the Parent’s Center at Saltonstall House.
West End House Boys and Girls Club
Each semester, Boston College students volunteer at the West End House as part of the 4Boston Program. These students assist the West End House staff by tutoring and mentoring youngsters at the Club. Additionally, they coordinate the Homework Club and provide computer instruction.
Love Your Block
Each Spring, Boston College student volunteers participate in the Love Your Block neighborhood cleanup program where they help to pick up trash and debris from Brighton neighborhoods. Volunteers also plant flowers and apply bark mulch in public spaces.
In keeping with our Jesuit, Catholic mission, BC's alumni community prioritizes service to others. No matter where you're located, we can help you identify volunteer opportunities where you and other Eagles can make a difference.