Student clubs are at the heart of the BU experience. They allow Terriers to explore new passions, develop their skills, and meet friends from across the University. With over 450 groups to get involved with, students can choose from countless activities that best match their interests. Support from alumni and friends makes the clubs’ incredible impact possible, empowering everything from working with new materials to covering travel costs to hosting valuable workshops. Here are 10 BU clubs that you can support as they work to provide professional experience, help members pursue hobbies, and create a lifelong community for students.

1. BU Baja

Designing and manufacturing an off-road vehicle is no small task, but that’s the challenge taken on by members of BU Baja each year. Members learn valuable skills in engineering and business, as their custom-made vehicle is transported to a national competition hosted by the Society of Automotive Engineers each spring. Students pitch their design to a fictional manufacturer and compete in events to test the vehicle’s performance.

BU Baja is split into multiple subteams, which each focus on constructing one portion of the vehicle. Students on every subteam develop collaboration and problem-solving skills, and use donations for the needed components as they learn to balance cost and performance. The club regularly uses Giving Day funds to purchase parts and materials necessary for building the vehicle, such as steel tubing and tools, and has hopes of continuing to compete in the national event.

2. AdClub

While classes at BU are a great way for students to learn skills and explore interests, clubs allow them to apply those skills to projects outside of the classroom. Open to students of all majors who are interested in advertising, AdClub leads over 150 students in completing projects for local businesses. Through AdClub, members build a robust portfolio of work that showcases their talents and industry experience.

Aiming to provide members with a holistic view of the advertising industry, AdClub uses funds from Giving Day to take students on tours of advertising agencies around Boston. In the past, the donations have covered the transportation costs for over 80 members. These tours allow students to see first-hand what agency life is like, as well as to learn from current industry experts. Covering transportation costs allows more members to take advantage of the opportunity, and AdClub hopes to continue holding agency visits and professional networking events for their members with future funding.

3. Ski Racing

Although BU’s campus facilities are equipped with almost everything you can think of, there isn’t a snowy mountain with pristine slopes anywhere on Comm Ave. Instead, the BU Ski Racing team (BUSKI) travels to mountains around New England six weekends each winter to race against other schools. The club pushes the limits of speed, regardless of a member’s previous experience or skill level.

Donations from Giving Day help the team travel to races that are farther from campus, and allow them to stay at hotels closer to the mountains, which is a huge boost on race day. In 2023, the BUSKI used their funds to travel to races at northern Vermont’s Jay Peak, where the women’s team placed first, and the men’s team fifth. Gifts also support the club’s trips to regionals and nationals.

“We really appreciate all the support we have received in the last few years, and hope we can keep it going to help us continue with our success on the mountain!”

4. UNICEF Campus Initiative

Organizing around 100 members through fundraising events and volunteer opportunities, the UNICEF Campus Initiative raises awareness of key global issues and advocates for the health and rights of children around the world. Much of the funds raised from Giving Day are used to buy supplies and materials for the club’s fundraising events, including their annual Be Golden fundraiser, which raises money for the Memorial Sloan Kettering Hospital in New York City.

With the funds from Giving Day 2023, the Be Golden fundraiser was able to host performances from other BU clubs to raise awareness for pediatric cancer research. The fundraiser generated over $5,000 for the Memorial Sloan Kettering Hospital! The UNICEF Campus Initiative hopes to increase the scale of their event in the future to raise even more money for vital pediatric cancer research. Giving Day has also allowed the club to hold bake sales, support volunteer opportunities, and give their members valuable experience in fundraising and project management while helping children in need.

5. Students for Reproductive Freedom

Students for Reproductive Freedom (SRF) aims to maintain and expand reproductive rights for people of all genders, and provide resources and education for the BU (and greater Boston) community. Reproductive justice, sex ed, and disability justice are common topics at SRF’s weekly meetings. The club also collaborates with other organizations to attend marches and educate members on a wide range of subjects.

Giving Day funds help SRF provide free safer sex supplies around campus, and hold events for members to discuss and learn about reproductive justice. SRF used the donations they received last spring to hold a drag show, which served as a fundraiser for the Eastern Massachusetts Abortion Fund. Hosting comedian Alison Leiby and her one-woman show about abortion is on the club’s list for future use of Giving Day funds, while continuing to promote education and resources to advance everyone’s reproductive freedoms.

6. Dance Theater Group

Weekly master classes from local professionals, opportunities to create student-choreographed pieces, and end-of-semester showcases are all part of the Dance Theater Group’s offerings. For over 50 years, the club has welcomed dancers of all experience levels, performing in styles ranging from hip-hop to ballet. Each semester culminates in performances from nearly 80 members, and Giving Day donations allow the master classes and performances at BU to continue.

This past year, donations allowed the club to hold three end-of-semester performances instead of two. The Dance Theater Group is also hosting an artist residency from world-renowned dancer, choreographer, and educator LaTasha Barnes in spring 2024 for all members to learn, collaborate, and bond with their fellow dancers. With future funds, the club is aiming for more artist residencies, as well as to fund its members’ yearly trips to the weekend-long American College Dance Association conference where members can participate in performances and classes from dance instructors around the country.

7. BU Dinghy Sailors

As one of the top competitive collegiate sailing teams in the country, BUDS gives students the chance to race in regattas, whether they’re competing at the top level or just learning their way around the course. Maintaining a fleet of boats takes a lot of work, but thankfully funds from Giving Day 2023 supported regular maintenance of the boats and the purchase of a new starting box for both practices and race-days. Allowing athletes to focus on sailing, and not on their equipment, is crucial for the sailor’s development.

Future donations will help address immediate projects such as installing a rainwater collection system to spray down boats after practice, and a better dryer and ventilation system for airing out wet gear. Each spring break, the team travels to a warmer state to begin spring training, and Giving Day funds also help offset the travel costs for both this training trip and for traveling to regattas throughout the season.

8. Undergraduate Philosophy Association

The Undergraduate Philosophy Association (UPA) brings together BU’s philosophy community for weekly discussions on music, epistemology, artificial intelligence, and anything else members vote on. By providing a curious and understanding space for members to tackle meaningful questions, the club encourages inquisition and exploration of life’s meaning. The UPA used funding from Giving Day 2023 to create a book club, as well as launch their first sponsored lecture series where they hosted former MIT postdoctoral associate Dr. Elsie Woodard.

In addition to maintaining this annual lecture series, the UPA hopes to use fundraising to sponsor cross-college events where philosophy groups from different campuses can join in fun and thought-provoking discussions. The discussions would unite philosophy lovers from around Boston, and could build platforms for countless future events. Participants would share ideas and ask questions, all while supporting the UPA’s belief that philosophy is for everyone.

9. Aural Fixation

Aural Fixation is a group of 10-20 treble-voiced singers who perform original arrangements of songs ranging from throwbacks to pop hits to ballads. The group holds an annual AcatoberFest Concert that all of BU’s 13 a cappella clubs perform at, records EPs and singles that are impressive testaments to the group’s dedication, and works to create a welcoming and relaxing environment for all members to come together and sing.

With plans to hold a special alumni concert and bring former members back to sing with the group, Aural Fixation has many goals for the future. Every year, the group funds their member’s participation in a road trip to visit another East Coast university’s a cappella group, where Aural Fixation performs at their concert and listens to diverse performances. Future funding also helps these singers record more of their music and release new EPs, which are significant acknowledgements of the singer’s collective efforts throughout each semester.

10. BU Barbell Club

The gym can be an intimidating space, but BU Barbell makes it more approachable by prioritizing community building through fitness. To create a welcoming environment, the club provides over 400 members with dodgeball, study brunches, rock climbing, and other activities outside the gym. Friendly faces from these events help students feel more comfortable in the gym, and builds a supportive community of lifters. Members can join groups that best match their fitness goals, and listen to educational seminars on a variety of topics to learn more about the sport.

BU Barbell uses Giving Day funding for these events, as well as larger gatherings like renting out a gym and catering food for members to eat, connect, and exercise. They also invited local strength coach Alec Chen to speak about getting started with an exercise program. With future funding aimed at more inclusive activities for general and non-lifting fitness interests, BU Barbell proves that there is always strength in numbers. Club president Angela Pistilli says the group exists to help students find that strength.

“We hope to raise even more funds for Giving Day 2024 to continue giving back to the fitness community here on campus.”

Motivate your friends, family, and classmates to support the student group that makes you #ProudToBU by becoming a Giving Day ambassador.

Become a Giving Day ambassador