Preface: When I visited BU junior year, the campus scared me. It seemed too long, too straight, too nonexistent. It was also an open campus in a city, so my parents were fairly scared too. After a semester and a half, though, I’m compelled to put “city-campus” in quotes, because quite often I find myself forgetting that we are one.
1. BU’s safety precautions. They’re incredible. As a student you receive BU emergency alerts immediately when an issue arises, any necessary updates as it unfolds, and a final alert summarizing the outcome. This has only happened twice during my time here, and I have never felt unsafe while on-campus. If I did, though, the BU Police number is printed on the back of every BU ID, so help would literally be in my back pocket.
2. The dining options. At many city schools, breakfast, lunch and dinner are a 10-minute walk away. This is far from the case at BU. As a freshman, if you live in freshmen housing, you won’t even need to walk outside to enjoy a nice personalized, dining-hall-cooked omlet.
3. Getting around. Com Ave is a long street, and when I visited, that was an immediate turn-off. Was I trying to give myself such a long walk from one end of campus to another? No. Here’s the thing, though: classes are at most a 20 minute walk away, and that holds true at many other, more rural universities as well. At BU, however, the T runs the entire length of campus. Feeling lazy? Missed the BU Shuttle? The T is there for you. Rural campuses have no green-line train, and the fact of the matter is, other city campuses don’t have access to public transportation in a way that’s even remotely comparable to the way the T runs down all of Com Ave.
4. City perks. My friends at rural schools will snapchat me on a Sunday, from a van filled with other college kids, saying, “Trip to Target today!!” They will then proceed to tweet about how the half-hour drive to the nearest store was so worthwhile, and then text me admitting that, yeah, it was pretty hard to convince one of the upperclassmen with a car to take them, but they really needed to run some errands.
I didn’t even realize that those sorts of day trips existed until they told me about them. At BU, there’s a CVS and a Star Market every corner. Newbury Street is a ten-minute walk off campus, for all of your wardrobe needs. And, of course, there are cafes and restaurants galore.
5.The “campus feel.” You won’t believe it until you feel it -I know I was super skeptical. But BU, more than other city campuses, has a definite college-campus vibe. Maybe it’s the red signs that are every 15 feet on Com Ave, or maybe its the beautiful, gothic architecture of the most central classroom buildings. It could be the immaculate interior of our gym or the size and number of turf fields and arenas. Whatever it is, many other city campuses don’t have it. BU does.