The Difference Is Our DNA

What compelled the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to award Boston University a grant to fight newborn mortality in Zambia? Why did Martin Luther King, Jr. adopt BU as a place where he could hone his message of justice and equality? And what is the catalyst that prompts 32,551 students to call BU their home every semester? It’s in our DNA: an inherent desire in each of our students, faculty, and staff to vigorously and dauntlessly pursue knowledge—and embrace the unlimited possibilities that come with it.

A Community Unlike Any Other

As you can see below, it takes people, ideas, and a little luck (Boston, you’re our town) to make BU what it is today: one of the most dynamic universities in the world.

Celebrated thinkers: On any given day, students will find themselves mesmerized by Nobel Prize winners, poets laureate, Pulitzer Prize winners, and Fulbright Scholars, among others.

Extraordinary teaching: When a classroom starts to percolate with new ideas, it’s because our faculty of scholars and accomplished practitioners know how to ignite students’ imaginations. That’s why we reward our best teachers with BU’s most prestigious honor: The Metcalf Cup and Prize.

Groundbreaking research: With faculty dedicated to a creative, interdisciplinary approach to problem solving, BU has become a leading global research institution—propelled forward by over $326.5 million in grants and contract awards in FY2015. In fall 2012, BU was invited to join the Association of American Universities, an elite organization of 61 other leading research universities in the United States and Canada.

World-class students: Elite students from all 50 states and 130+ countries pursue higher education on BU campuses in Boston and at programs in LA, DC, and more than 30 other cities on six continents.

A city within a city: Today, 75 percent of our undergrads live on campus, which could explain our 450+ student activity groups alone.

The greatest college town in the world: Boston. ’Nuff said.

BU Basics

How many freshmen matriculated last fall? What is the student to faculty ratio? Do you know how many continents BU spans? Which professor is a two-time Pulitzer Prize winner? (Hint: He also doubles as a dean around campus.)

  • 3,629 freshmen (Fall 2015)
  • 12.5 students for each faculty member
  • Programs on 6 continents
  • COM Dean has 2 Pulitzers

There are so many numbers, statistics, facts, and figures about BU, you could scroll for miles. Here’s a quick overview…

* Student counts are based on Fall 2015 mid-semester information. Also see 2014/2015 Boston University Fact Sheet, published June 2015.

Community
Student body 32,551
Undergraduate 16,456
Graduate & professional 13,650
Non-Degree 2,445
Faculty 3,884
Total Employees 9,978
Living alumni 342,454
Campus
Boston locations Charles River Campus & Medical Campus
Campus area 135 acres
Buildings 324
Classrooms 544
Libraries 23
Laboratories 2,326
Academics
Schools & colleges 17
Programs of study More than 250
Study abroad programs Over 93 in 38 cities in 26 countries
Student / faculty ratio 12.5:1
Average class size 27
Total degrees awarded 6,622 (May 2015)
Total doctoral/professional degrees 3,145 (May 2015)
Grant & Contract Awards
Research Awards $326.5 million in FY2015
BMC Clinical Research Grants $107 million
Financial Aid & Scholarships
Total grants & scholarships (non-need-based) $35,405,659
Total grants & scholarships (need-based) $181,891,232
Average need-based grant/scholarship $29,854
Average total need-based financial aid $35,766
Student Life
Undergraduate students living on campus 75%
Community service hours 100,000+
Alternative Spring Break participants 400+
First-Year Student Outreach Project volunteers 900+
Student organizations Over 450
Art & performance organizations 69
Academic & professional organizations 79
Community service & justice organizations 55
Cultural & religious organizations 48
Concerts & performances on campus Over 500
Facebook pages & groups Over 90
Twitter accounts Over 80
Exhibitions 50+
Dissertation & thesis defenses 250+ open to the public
Scholarship
Conferences, lectures & symposia 1,500+
Faculty experts in the news 2,432 annually
International Community
Students’ origins 7,831 international students from 134 countries
Language houses 6
Cultural student groups 32
Global initiatives 400+
Global Days of Service 25,000 hours/4,000+ participants
Alumni abroad 180+ countries
Athletics
Varsity sports 22 (12 women’s, 10 men’s)
Club sports 32 teams / 32 sports
Club sports participants 7,000
Intramural sports & tournaments 15
Fitness & recreation classes 100+ for credit and hundreds of non-credit classes
FitRec users Over 6,500 visits daily