As incoming students begin planning their move to college, the question on their minds shifts from what school they will be attending for the next four years to what they will do with their time there.
While family members reminisce about their college days in an a capella group or the friends they met on the debate team, it can be daunting to navigate the nearly 500 student groups Boston University has to offer.
To ease the stress, here is a list of just some of the on-campus organizations students can join in the Fall.
For the Community Builder
Center for Gender, Sexuality and Activism
CGSA is a student-run space on campus aiming to foster dialogue and awareness around issues of gender and sexuality at BU. The center is open daily to host student meetings and is home to its own library. It is operated by a coordinating board composed entirely of students.
Community Service Center
The CSC at BU offers many opportunities for students looking to get involved with community service in and around Boston. The center connects students with tutoring jobs, leadership and mentoring programs, spring break service trips and various other community service opportunities throughout the year.
Students can also volunteer to work on the CSC operations team or as a program manager for the First-Year Student Outreach Project, a week-long community service program offered for incoming freshmen.
For the STEM Student
Whether you love computer programming or are looking to try it for the first time, Make BU is a great place to start, with members representing colleges across campus.
Every week, Make BU holds two-hour “hack nights,” where students can learn new skills, work on their own projects and connect with one another. Make BU also organizes an annual overnight hackathon, a 24-hour event where students work on new or existing programming projects and ultimately submit their projects for awards.
For the Business Student
Business and Technology Club
BizTech is an organization for students interested in the intersection of business and technology. It provides students with updates from the business technology world, networking and professional events, case competitions and more, allowing its members to explore the world of business technology and the many paths available within this field.
For the Communications Student
This student-run television network is one of the largest student groups on campus, with members across all colleges. Students create programs from news shows to drama series, broadcasting them on campus television channel 10 and on the BUTV10 website.
This past year, BUTV’s election program team, Primary Focus 2020, won a Bronze Telly Award and a National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences Student Production Award for its coverage of the New Hampshire presidential primary election.
The student-run radio station has genres to fit a broad array of interests, from sports to hard news. Students can also choose to join other students’ radio or talk shows, with the possibility of creating their own in the future.
For the first semester, newcomers choose a show or several shows they would like to intern on. After these interns learn the lay of the land, they must pass a station evaluation toward the end of the semester before becoming a DJ.
The Daily Free Press
The Daily Free Press is the University’s independent student-run newspaper. It has covered campus and the Greater Boston area for five decades, producing hard news and feature-style stories along with opinion, sports and blog pieces.
Students who are not writers can find a niche in photography, podcasting or video production, as well as layout design or social media management for the newspaper.
For the International Student
International Student Organization
The International Student Organization aims to unite students from around the world by sharing diverse experiences and cultural backgrounds. The organization holds events to bring together BU’s international community and create a space for international students to connect with and feel supported by one another.
Third Culture Club
Founded just last year, Third Culture Club is for students who grew up in a country other than their parents’ or their passport’s country. TCC strives to bring together students with this unique background through educational and recreational events highlighting students’ many cultural identities and experiences.
For the Performer
BU’s oldest and largest performing arts group, Stage Troupe offers aspiring actors, writers, directors and stage technicians the opportunity to take part in student-run productions. Stage Troupe presents seven mainstage shows each year, all selected and developed by students, as well as special projects and student events throughout the year. No experience is required to join.
A classic among student organizations, a cappella is a great way for singers and music lovers to practice their craft while forming lasting connections with their peers. BU has more than 10 a cappella groups students can audition for. Groups put on performances every year and compete at the regional and national level against other college groups.
For the Dancer
Dance Theater Group
Dance Theater Group is perfect for those interested in all aspects of dance: the art, the choreography and the performance. Students who are accepted train weekly with dance professionals at BU. Toward the end of each semester, the group presents a showcase.
For those who gravitate toward specific styles or cultures, BU offers an array of clubs for every type of dancer. These include organizations dedicated to belly dancing, classical Indian dance, ballroom dance and hip hop.
For the Policymaker
BU has a prolific student government network, offering numerous opportunities for students to become involved in campus politics and student representation.
StuGov comprises an executive board — elected annually — and the Senate, a collection of student representatives from each college whose primary responsibility is to propose and pass legislation reflecting the needs of their constituents. Anyone, however, is welcome to attend SG’s weekly meetings and propose legislation.
Each college also has its own student government that works to address school-specific needs.
For the Adventurer
A classic college club, the BU Outing Club is a popular way for students to meet new people while exploring New England. The club holds regular trips to the mountains and beach for members and non-members alike.
Ski and Board Club
Popular due to Boston’s infamous winters, the Ski and Board Club attracts students from all over campus and with all levels of experience and ability on the mountain. The group hosts weekend excursions as well as trips during Spring Recess to ski mountains on the East Coast, out west and in Canada.
For the Socialite
Fraternities and Sororities
BU is home to 10 panhellenic sororities and eight recognized fraternities in the North American Interfraternity Council for social Greek life. There are also two community service groups — the co-ed fraternity Alpha Phi Omega and the sorority Omega Phi Alpha — and professional fraternities geared toward majors and careers such as business and chemistry.
And Many More…
This list offers just a small sampling of the many student organizations BU has to offer. Even the full list does not encompass every interest out there. Students can create their own campus organization through the Student Activities Office.
Registered groups must have four officers — a president, vice president, secretary and treasurer — as well as an official constitution. SAO reviews new group proposals at the end of each Spring semester.
The amount of opportunities for students to get involved on campus can be overwhelming. But Katherine Cornetta, assistant to the Dean of Students, wrote in an email that it’s possible to find a club suited to every schedule.
“One of the great things about the wide variety of organizations we have is that they provide a wide variety of time commitments,” Cornetta wrote. “No matter your studying or work schedule, there is an organization or activity you can participate in to enrich your BU experience.”