To the Boston Community

Over the years, Boston University has grown into a leading, vibrant center of research and education that attracts students and faculty from around the world. At the same time, we have remained firm in our commitment to our home community. Our mission is complex, but we can state it in three fundamental concepts: we educate the next generation of citizens and leaders; we create the knowledge that will drive our economy and society forward; and we engage in service to our community and the world.

The economic benefits we generate for Boston and the region are immense. If you add up the direct and indirect spending of the University, our employees, and our students and their visitors, you’ll see an annual economic impact  and PILOT of more than $3.8 billion. We provide direct payments and services to the City of Boston totaling $37.9 million, far exceeding any other educational institution. Research at BU, especially in science, engineering, and the health sciences, generates new information, ideas, and therapies that improve our lives, as well as new products, companies, and jobs. I would like to describe a few highlights of our impact on the City of Boston.

We recently expanded the Boston Scholars Program, the largest and longest-running scholarship program for urban public high school students in America. Now, in addition to full scholarships for Boston’s top students, all graduates of Boston public high schools who gain admission to BU will have their full financial need met without loans through our new Boston High Community Service Awards Program.

Our students provide thousands of hours of community service to many organizations in Boston. As an example, our freshman orientation program in August engaged 1200 students in 25,000 hours of community service in one week! You will find in this brochure a number of examples of the work students are doing in our community.

Finally, drive from Kenmore Square to Packard’s Corner and you can see the dramatic improvements that we have helped to bring about in partnership with the City of Boston and the state. You will find improved traffic patterns and a new public transportation center in Kenmore. Bicycle lanes and shorter crosswalks all help to improve safety and convenience for drivers and pedestrians, while extensive landscaping from Kenmore to the BU Bridge now makes this section of Commonwealth Avenue part of a grand boulevard, not just another city street. With the opening of our newest high-rise residence facility, we now house  77 percent of our undergraduates on campus, and that means more apartment space available for residents of Boston and Brookline.

When you read this report, I am sure you will agree that Boston University does indeed make a great difference in our community.

Robert A. Brown

Robert A. Brown