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Edmit Hidden Gems: Boston College, Chestnut Hill, MA

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Generous financial aid packages, diverse extracurriculars, and a 96 percent job placement make Boston College an Edmit Hidden Gem.

Boston College is a Jesuit liberal arts institution known for its service-oriented campus culture, bustling extracurriculars, and NCAA sports teams. Technically located in Chestnut Hill, Massachusetts, approximately 10 miles from downtown, Boston College (BC) is also a full university, thanks to its graduate school and professional programs.

“BC is daunting in the beginning in terms of money,” says senior Caroline Lewis, “but it’s important to note that [alumni] are on a track” to successful careers. The school boasts a 91 percent graduation rate, 96 percent job placement rate, and a median starting salary of $57,000.

Because of its stellar outcomes, as well as its generous financial aid packages, Boston College is an Edmit Hidden Gem school.

Studying at Boston College

Once enrolled at BC, undergraduate students can study within seven colleges: arts and sciences, education, management, nursing, social work, theology and ministry, and advancing studies (for nontraditional students). Popular majors include economics, English, finance, and political science.

When considering schools, Albany-based Lewis found BC’s Jesuit ideals appealing, as well as the college curriculum itself. “It was rigorous--but not that I would be drowning,” she says, and ultimately went on to double major in psychology and English.

Class sizes at BC tend to be small, with the average student to instructor around 12:1, and approachability is part of the campus culture. “The professors and staff at BC have been really willing to actively get to know students,” Lewis says.

Additionally, there are more than 250 clubs and organizations across campus, 31 NCAA Division I sports teams, and 40 intramural teams. BC’s vast array of clubs and extracurriculars “was a game changer for me,” says Lewis, particularly in creating community. “I think the demographic at BC can seem daunting, but getting involved in clubs that suit your interest help you find people who are like you and get that friend base.”  

Boston College Affordability

While Boston College’s sticker price is steep, the average net price for the 2016-17 year at BC was $33,661. More than 65 percent of students receive financial aid, and Lewis cites the BC Montserrat Office, a guidance program that works with high-financial need students, as key to attaining her forthcoming BC degree.

“BC is notoriously good at recognizing families that have need and giving them aid to match that,” says Lewis. “My dad has been retired since I was in middle school, and my mom actually was briefly retired for about a year. So during that time, we didn’t have much money coming in. I was part of Montserrat, which is super helpful.”  

With a focus on student life guidance beyond financial aid, Montserrat activities include complimentary tickets to campus events, funding assistance for independent study and research, and access to cultural institutions. The office currently works with the 15 percent of the undergraduate student body recognized as high financial need.

Boston College Career Prep

The BC Career Center “is a good stepping stone for making connections with alumni who can help get your foot in the door in your field,” says Lewis. “The summer [after] my junior year, I interned at Big Brothers Big Sisters of Massachusetts Bay, and I got there through the Career Center. A lot of the people who work at Big Brothers Big Sisters went to BC and there’s a huge alumni network there.”

BC has a 91 percent graduation rate, and 96 percent of BC’s class of 2016 indicated full-time employment, enrollment in graduate school, or military service within six months after graduation.

After graduating this May, Lewis will head to Ukraine for a two-year Peace Corps assignment in youth development.

“I got to meet with a Peace Corps recruiter my sophomore year on BC campus, which was super helpful,” says Lewis. “BC has a lot of recruitment activities: My friend had an interview with Apple on campus, another friend had an interview with Abercrombie & Fitch on campus. Teach for America does a lot of on-campus recruiting. BC in general is very good about bringing companies to campus to make it more accessible for students.”


Have a recommendation for a Hidden Gem college? We want to hear them! Tweet your suggestions to @EdmitEDU or email us at support@edmit.me.

Photo by the Massachusetts Office of Travel & Tourism on Flickr.

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