By Cathy Cheng (ENG & CAS ’23)
Let’s face it: with tuition at Boston University costing almost $60,000 this year, you’d want to make the most out of it. So here’s a list of all the free things that come with being a BU student! Besides, who doesn’t love free stuff?
Located in Copley Square, just a 20-minute T-ride away from campus, the Museum of Fine Arts allows free entry to all BU students! Just show your BU student ID at the ticket counter. The MFA is the 20th largest museum in the world with more than 450,000 works of art.
Perhaps best known for the Gardner Museum Heist in 1990 in which $500 million worth of art was stolen, the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum is made to look like a Venetian palazzo (with some of its windows, balconies, and arches actually derived from palazzos!) with an impressive, lush courtyard. The museum itself houses art from around the world and is located approximately 20 minutes away from campus by the T. You can show your BU ID at the ticket counter, or use promo code BOSTUNIV when reserving tickets online.
Just a few minutes from downtown Boston and overlooking the Boston Harbor, the ICA exhibits contemporary art. Just 30 minutes from campus by the T, stop by for some arts and crafts (it’s mostly for kids, but who’s counting?), incredible views in the outdoor amphitheater, and contemporary art! Just show your BU ID at the ticket counter.
Your BU student ID also gets you access to the Boston Symphony Orchestra. Just register for a College Card to attend Encore BSO Recitals and other performances! You can pick up a College Card at the CFA Dean’s Office (855 Commonwealth Avenue, 2nd floor), the GSU Information Desk (775 Commonwealth Avenue, 2nd floor), the CAS Student Programs and Leadership Office (685 Commonwealth Office, Suite 130), or the HR Office (25 Buick Street). You can register for a BSO card online with your BU ID!
1. BU Shuttle
Okay, so this isn’t the most exciting item on the list…but it’s definitely convenient! The BU Shuttle has stops on the Charles River Campus as well as the Medical Campus, and is free to all BU students! Download the Terrier Transit app to track the shuttle!
2. Ice Skating at Walter Brown Arena
All BU students get free membership to the Fitness and Recreation Center (FitRec), and in turn, free admission to ice skating during open skate hours at the Walter Brown Arena! Just check their website for the hours. You do need to bring your own skates, or you can rent them for $5 at the rink!
3. Public Open Night at the Observatory
Nothing to do on a Wednesday night? Come visit the Observatory to look at the night sky! The Observatory hosts Public Open Nights beginning at 7:30pm in the fall and winter, and 8:30pm in the spring and summer. You can reserve your free tickets online at Eventbrite.
The free services that come with being a BU student don’t end there! There are also a couple of free online services. BU Student Health Services offers free Headspace subscriptions for mindfulness and meditation. Just sign up at this link with your BU login information!
2. Xfinity on Campus
For on-campus students, BU offers free subscriptions to Xfinity on Campus! Livestream some TV or find your favorite shows on Video on Demand! Just find Boston University under participating institutions and use your BU login information!
3. Microsoft Office
Need Microsoft Office for your classes? Well, it’s free for all BU students! Whether you need Excel for that lab report, or Word for an essay, you just need to follow the instructions on BU Information Services & Technology’s website to download Microsoft Office for your device!
4. Adobe Creative Cloud
Last but not least, for all the artists out there, BU also offers free access to Adobe Creative Cloud, which includes over 20 different applications. Follow the instructions on BU Information Services & Technology’s website to download this as well!
You may not get to all of these, but they’ll be there when you need them! Be sure to check them out and explore the city!