|Motto||Learning, Virtue, Piety|
|$2.18 billion (2018)|
|10,182 (2018) (including faculty)|
|Campus||Urban, 135 acres (0.55 km2)|
|Scarlet and White|
Boston University (commonly referred to as BU) is a
The university has more than 3,900 faculty members and nearly 33,000 students, and is one of Boston's largest employers. It offers
BU is categorized as an R1: Doctoral University (very high research activity) in the
Among its alumni and current or past faculty, the university counts eight
|Lemuel H. Murlin||1911–1924|
|William F. Anderson (acting)||1925–1926|
|Calvin B.T. Lee (acting)||1970|
Boston University traces its roots to the establishment of the Newbury Biblical Institute in
On April 24–25, 1839 a group of
In 1847, the Congregational Society in
With the agreed twenty years coming to a close, the trustees of the Concord Biblical Institute purchased 30 acres (120,000 m2) on Aspinwall Hill in
In 1869, three trustees of the Boston Theological Institute obtained from the Massachusetts Legislature a charter for a university by name of "Boston University". These trustees were successful Boston businessmen and Methodist laymen, with a history of involvement in educational enterprises and became the founders of Boston University. They were Isaac Rich (1801–1872), Lee Claflin (1791–1871), and Jacob Sleeper (1802–1889), for whom Boston University's three
As reported by Kathleen Kilgore in her book, Transformations, A History of Boston University (see
Every department of the new university was also open to all on an equal footing regardless of sex, race, or (with the exception of the School of Theology) religion.
In January 1872 Isaac Rich died, leaving the vast bulk of his estate to a trust that would go to Boston University after ten years of growth while the University was organized. Most of this bequest consisted of real estate throughout the core of the city of Boston which was appraised at more than $1.5 million. Kilgore describes this as the largest single donation to an American college or university to that time. By December, however, the
As a result, the University was unable to build its contemplated campus on Aspinwall Hill, and the land was sold piecemeal as development sites. Street names in the area, including Claflin Road, Claflin Path, and University Road, are the only remaining evidence of University ownership in this area. Following the fire, Boston University established its new facilities in buildings scattered throughout
After receiving a year's salary advance to allow him to pursue his research in 1875,
The university continued its tradition of openness in this period. In 1877, Boston University became the first American university to award a Ph.D. to a woman when classics scholar
Seeking to unify a geographically scattered school and enable it to participate in the development of the city, school president Lemuel Murlin arranged that the school buy the present campus along the
The Presidency of
In addition to recruiting new scholars, Silber expanded the physical campus, constructing the Photonics Center for the study of light, a new building for the School of Management, and the Life Science and Engineering Building for interdisciplinary research, among other projects. Campus expansion continued in the 2000s with the construction of new dormitories and the
Robert Brown's presidency, which started in 2005, has sought to further the consolidation of campus infrastructure that was commenced by earlier administrations. During his tenure, Brown has strengthened the core missions of undergraduate, graduate, and professional education, interdisciplinary work, and research and scholarship across all 17 schools and colleges. In 2007, Brown introduced his 10-year strategic plan, which articulates BU's core values in a set of institutional commitments and defines goals to be met to establish BU as one of the largest private research universities. Brown committed the University to investing $1.8 billion in the completion of this ten-year strategic plan, allocating new resources to inter-college opportunities for undergraduates, improving the campus's academic and residential facilities, and recruiting new faculty. One overriding goal has been to break down the barriers between the University's 17 schools and colleges that had evolved over the decades and find ways to combine different fields and researchers within interdisciplinary research centers. This philosophy of creating new knowledge from a variety of corners of the University extends to undergraduate education, as well, which has been overhauled to expose students to new fields and ways of thinking and problem solving. This includes requiring course work outside their majors, development of personal communications skills, and cross-school collaborations. That new curriculum, called the BU Hub, goes into effect in 2018.
The strategic plan also called for increasing the annual budget by $225 million per year. The FY2016 operating budget was $2.2 billion and the FY2017 budget is $2.4 billion. In FY2016, the research enterprise at the University brought in $368.9 million in sponsored research, comprising 1,896 awards to 722 faculty investigators.
In 2012, the University was invited to join the Association of American Universities, the organization of the 62 leading research universities in the United States and Canada. BU, one of only four universities invited to join the group since 2000, became the 62nd member. In the Boston area, Harvard, MIT, and Brandeis are also members.
That same year, a $1 billion comprehensive fundraising campaign was launched, the University's first-ever comprehensive campaign, with the primary focus on financial aid, faculty support, research, and facility improvements. In 2016, the campaign goal was reached. The Board of Trustees voted to raise the goal to $1.5 billion and extend through 2019. To date, the campaign has funded some 74 new faculty positions, including 49 named full professorships and 25 Career Development Professorships.
In 2016, Times Higher Education (THE) named Boston University to a list of 53 "international powerhouse" institutions, schools that have the best chance of being grouped alongside—or ahead of—THE's most elite global "old stars," a group that includes the University of Oxford, Stanford, Harvard, Yale, MIT, and Princeton.
The Charles River and Medical Campuses have also undergone notable physical transformations since 2006, from new buildings and playing fields to dormitory renovations. The campus has seen the addition of a 26-floor student residence at 33 Harry Agganis Way, nicknamed StuVi2, the New Balance Playing Field, the Yawkey Center for Student Services, the Alan and Sherry Leventhal Center, the Law tower and Redstone annex, the Engineering Product Innovation Center (EPIC), the Center for Integrated Life Sciences & Engineering (CILSE), and the Joan and Edgar Booth Theatre, scheduled to open in fall 2017. The Dahod Family Alumni Center in the renovated BU Castle will begin in May 2017. Development of the University's existing housing stock has included significant renovations to BU's oldest dorm, Myles Standish Hall and Annex, and to Kilachand Hall, formerly known as Shelton Hall, and a brand new student residence on the Medical Campus.