Alumni Memories of Core

Students who take Core have many different reasons for doing so — enthusiasm for the reading list, a love of discussion and intellectual exploration, a desire to efficiently satisfy their College requirements, etc. But by the end of their time in the program, they have shared a common experience and come to think of themselves as “Core” students. Their relationship with Core doesn’t end when their time in Core classes is over; many upperclassmen who were in Core as first- and-second-year students remain active in the Core community, by tutoring current students or joining them on trips to the theater or MFA, by editing the Core Journal or acting in Calliope stage productions, and so on.

There is also an active alumni association, EnCore. BU graduates who were in Core return to campus for alumni receptions, meet each other for gallery trips and book club discussions, stay in touch with faculty and former classmates, and make themselves available to current students for career advice.

We regularly ask recent graduates to share their favorite memory of their time in Core.

You’ll read novels and see Cervantes scribbling in the background; you’ll listen to cynic comedians and hear Rabelais snickering at them; you’ll hear people tell you, “Everything in moderation” and think, “Ah, but Aristotle already said that!” I never could have predicted the value of my Core classes for how they taught me to read and write and think, and I probably still don’t know the extent of it. However, the foundation they gave me is undeniably one of the most defining experiences of my education thus far, and probably will always be.

– Erin McDonagh, English, Core ’08, CAS ’10
Pearson Publishing

My most memorable college friendships all began at Core lecture, and solidified in the discussion sections. Not only are your fellow classmates much more interesting people than most, but the professors are of the highest caliber at BU; they are truly passionate about their work, and committed to opening your mind to the best contributions mankind has made throughout history.

– Grecia Alvarez, English and Hispanic Language & Literatures, Core ’05, CAS ’07;
Fulbright scholar

What the Core gave me was a taste, a sampling platter of the books that I should have read long before. It has also given me the chance to sing with a philosophically-based yet fun-loving barbershop quartet. Core has given me the appreciation of fine art, music, and just plain shooting-the-breeze with others about nothing in general. I have gained the ability to tie philosophical meaning to the most menial tasks imaginable.

– Lars Andresen, Archaeology, Core ’02, CAS ’04

I look back fondly at my time at BU and especially at my time with Core. I think of it as my real education, and where I really grew as a person. I decided after BU that if I could finish War and Peace, then I could finish law school. So I made that my major task before I allowed myself to fill out law school applications. If it wasn’t for Core, I never would have attempted such a thing.

– Lisa Franchini, International Relations, Core ’02, CAS ’04
New York County assistant district attorney