Learn more about our unique curriculum and community
Who We Are
Kilachand Honors College offers a challenging liberal education grounded in exploration, discovery, and the real-world application of knowledge. Kilachand provides its students with an integrated, four-year curriculum that includes experiential and team learning opportunities, to be completed alongside the courses required by their majors. The Kilachand curriculum, through rigorous courses and enrichment experiences, asks students to use the tools and methods of every academic discipline to understand global challenges and develop practical solutions.
The Arvind and Chandan Nandlal Kilachand Honors College was founded in 2011 by a record gift of $25 million generously given by Boston University Trustee Rajen Kilachand. This was followed by another gift of $10 million in 2012 to provide a residence, Kilachand Hall, for the College’s students.
All first-year Kilachand students live together in Kilachand Hall where many Kilachand courses and co-curricular events are held. The Kilachand Directors, Academic Advisors, and Post-Doctoral Fellows also have offices in Kilachand Hall and the frequent, informal interactions among students, faculty, and staff fosters a community of collegiality and support.
Get a sneak peek inside Kilachand Hall and to learn more about the Kilachand Honors College.
The students who thrive at Kilachand are intellectually curious and courageous, and they want to put their knowledge to use to benefit their communities. We seek students who wish to study an array of subjects across disciplines, as well as focus deeply on their major interests. The Kilachand curriculum asks students to use the tools and methods of every academic discipline to understand global challenges and develop practical solutions. Through rigorous courses and co-curricular events, students hone their capacity for critical reasoning and effective communication, skills that are crucial to every academic, intellectual, and socially responsible enterprise as well as to that all-important pursuit of shaping an engaged and fulfilling life beyond the university.
Kilachand Honors College strives to engage students inside and outside of the classroom. We encourage students to become Peer Mentors, Kilachand Ambassadors, and members of the Kilachand Leadership Advisory Board (KLAB). Kilachand Honors College student groups give Kilachand students the opportunity to engage with peers and administrators in Kilachand, hold leadership positions, and represent Kilachand outside of the College.
The Kilachand curriculum invites students to formulate and discuss questions of scientific, social, ethical, and aesthetic significance and share their conclusions with a broad audience. Through a combination of seminars, lectures, break-out discussions, and experiential opportunities, students hone their creative and critical thinking skills and apply them to problems of contemporary relevance.
Kilachand sophomore Marissa Carty (CAS ’22) discusses the integration of the Kilachand curriculum with her major, the BU Hub, and Study Abroad in the videos below.
Co-curricular events engage students in the broader implications of the Kilachand curriculum and academic community. Co-curriculars complement our formal curriculum with activities that encourage students to think about things they hadn’t previously considered, create a desire to learn more and talk to the speaker, or the playwright, or the author. They take one away from one’s normal sphere of activity and professional competence and introduce us to something new that wasn’t expected.
Past co-curricular guests include Astrophysicist Hakeem Oluseyi, renowned film director Werner Herzog, and award-winning authors Zadie Smith and Min Jin Lee. Students often visit the Boston Ballet, the Museum of Fine Arts, and the Institute of Contemporary Art for private talks and tours and group performances.
All Kilachand students complete a substantial work of empirical or scholarly research, creativity, or invention by the close of their senior year.
The purpose of the Keystone Project is to provide students with a sustained experience of intellectual discovery and an opportunity to share their work with a broader audience. This process begins in the junior year, when students learn to balance the excitement of imaginative approaches to their intellectual interests with the rigor of field-specific methodologies and begin to work on the design of their thesis or project. It continues in the senior year, as students conduct their research, write their thesis or produce their creative project, and assess the significance of the work they have done. The research thesis or project can take a variety of forms, but students must aim for the highest standards of the discipline or interdisciplinary area they select.
Below, Kilachand alum Jamie Lim (SAR ’14, MED ’19) discusses how support from Kilachand allowed him to conduct research in Nepal for his Keystone Project.
Each spring, Kilachand Honors College students present their Keystone Projects at the annual Kilachand Honors College Keystone Symposium.
Kilachand’s Experiential Learning Program offers students opportunities to learn outside traditional academic classrooms, that is, to learn by doing and reflecting on the experience of doing. Kilachand students take advantage of internships, undergraduate research, study abroad, and other experiential learning programs at Boston University. There are also unique opportunities for travel and collaboration supported by Kilachand, such as the Program in Forced Displacement Studies.
Reach Out to a Kilachand Ambassador
Kilachand Ambassadors are current students who are eager to share their insight into Kilachand and BU with you! Browse their profiles here to learn about their diverse academic paths and extracurricular interests, and feel free to ask them why Kilachand has been a rewarding part of their college experience.
Visit and Apply
You can apply to Kilachand by first applying to one of Boston University’s degree-granting schools or colleges via the BU Common Application Supplement. Once there, you will have the option to complete a supplemental essay to be considered for admission to Kilachand. Your materials will be reviewed for Kilachand if you are first admitted to your BU school or college of choice, thus your admission to BU is not dependent on your admission to Kilachand.