Students new to campus: today marks the official start of your BU career. You’ve unpacked, your family has returned home, and classes begin today. We reached out to some upperclassmen for a few tips to help make your transition as smooth as possible.
Best of luck as you begin your first year at BU.
1. Learn the acronyms for BU landmarks
Every school and college, along with every building, at BU has its own acronym. The sooner you learn them, the easier you’ll be able to find your way around. Find for a list of abbreviations here.
2. Look before you cross
Ask anyone and they’ll tell you that crossing Comm Ave is a lot harder—and a lot more dangerous—than it looks. Each day an estimated 20,000 pedestrians, 3,000 cyclists, and 36,000 cars traverse the BU section of the multilane thoroughfare. Add the MBTA Green Line B trolley and you get a sense of how crazy the traffic is. So cross at the green, not in between, and remember to look both ways.
3. Download the MBTA and BU mobile apps
Want to know if there are major delays on the MBTA’s T service? Or what is the best transit line to take to get to your destination? Need to find out if the BU Shuttle (BUS) is running during a blizzard? There are free apps you can download for each. Find MBTA apps here and the BU Mobile app here.
4). Take advantage of your free membership at FitRec
Full-time students are automatically entitled to access to BU’s Fitness & Recreation Center, which offers state-of-the art facilities. What’s not to love?
5. Keep your key and ID with you at all times
Don’t forget your key and ID, even when you head to the shower, otherwise you could find yourself locked out and needing help. But don’t worry, it happens to everyone at least once.
6. Use your student discounts
Here’s another reason to carry your BU ID all the time. It gets you free admission to most of Boston’s museums and discounts at numerous websites and brick-and mortar-stores, like J.Crew, Vineyard Vines, and Banana Republic.
7. Don’t walk alone late at night
You’re in a city. Be smart. If you’re out late, find a friend to walk home with or call Scarlet Safewalk, the student-run escort security service, at 617-353-4877. The number is also listed on the back of your student ID. Someone will walk you to your on-campus destination.
8. Help for anyone with food allergies and dietary restrictions
Have a food allergy or a dietary restriction? Dining Services collaborates with Student Health Services and the Sargent Choice Nutrition Center to provide nutrition services and counseling to BU students.
9. Get to know your RA
Living away from home for the first time can be hard—suddenly you have to master a slew of new things, from laundry to living with strangers. Your resident assistant is a wealth of information. RAs have been in your shoes, and they are a great resource if you’re feeling homesick, having roommate troubles, or need some suggestions for getting acclimated to life at BU. Give their door a knock and introduce yourself.
10. Take advantage of office hours
It may seem like a cliché, but many freshman classes are large lectures with hundreds of students. Getting to know your professors can deepen your academic experience and help answer any questions you have about course materials and assignments. Stop by during your professors’ office hours and ask questions—they are here to help you succeed at BU and beyond.