5 top things I did at Boston University (other than studying)

6 Dec

Of course, academics are a central feature of the college experience, but they are not, and should not, be limited by it. The whole college experience is a holistic one. It would be a waste of an opportunity if one focuses on studies alone and not the range of activities that college has to offer.

For me, what made college worthwhile was the diversity of experiences I had. There is a lot I learnt from my participation in all the student clubs, and the responsibilities I decided to take on as I followed my passions.

Boston University graduation

Image Credit: www.bu.edu


  1. Joining the Boston University Indian Community

As a part of the Indian community in Boston, we often found ourselves participating in events held at the Boston University Indian Community Club. Being a part of such a club meant that we organized fund raisers, community building exercises and cultural experiences for students while on campus.
Being a part of BUIC was great for my personal growth but also helped me for a network with those who were in the same boat. So, being a part of a community like BUIC was very helpful in terms of making life easier as an international student. That and it was a lot of fun!
Not only were the events highly attractive for BU students, also for students from other universities in Boston like Northeastern University, Suffolk, Harvard, MIT.
BUIC was where it was at!

  1. Dancing with BU Jalwa

I was highly enthusiastic about joining a dance crew while at BU. These crews competed in inter school tournaments that took place nationwide. This gave us a chance to make friends all over the country with other students who were also passionate about dancing.
The energy that my team members brought to the table was a class apart. Because we were traveling together and competing in high intensity events, it gave us time to bond as a team and create friendships that will last a lifetime.
Dancing had always been my passion. But at BU it taught me hard work & teamwork. For that I’m especially grateful.

  1. Chef Mehr

When I first joined BU, I was an undecided major.
This gave me a chance for me to flirt with all the subjects the school had to offer.


As someone who had always enjoyed cooking, I even considered following my passion professionally. That’s when I discovered cooking classes with Chef DiFronzo. This was my first introduction to the basics of French cuisine. I learned how to make the 5 mother sauces and basic knife skills. It was surprising to me to see how much we think we know and then see how wrong we are! College life in a nutshell, am I right?

I learned all about techniques and enjoyed the perks. We could take back whatever we cooked in class that day. Today, not only can I make a mean steak wellington, but I can be completely self-sufficient.


  1. Lecturing about Sikhism

It was in my freshman year at college that I realized that religions all over the world have always fascinated me. I wanted to explore this further, so I took a course called “Introduction to Eastern Religion.” We covered everything from Daoism, Confucianism, Buddhism, Hinduism and even Jainism.
But, as a proud Sikh, it was shocking to me that Sikhism was not covered in the prose. When I spoke to my professor about it, he confessed that he did not know enough about Sikhism to teach it to the class. So, I took this opportunity to volunteer as a guest lecturer.
With some preparation and a plan, I walked into class ready to educate my peers about this wonderful religion. This was one of the most nerve wracking experiences ever!
I found myself addressing a class of 100+ students. After my short but informative lecture was over, I decided to open the floor to some questions and answers. This is where the knowledge I had about my own religion was really put to the test.

This was a great experience because it made me overcome my nerves, talk about my beliefs with strangers, and embrace a challenge. Phew!

  1. Adopting Enzo the Yorkshire terrier

Last, but not the least, I have to say that this was one of the most unique experience as a student abroad. My roommates and I decided to collectively adopt a dog!
In my junior year at BU we adopted a pet Yorkshire terrier and called him Enzo. He was one of the friskiest little bundles of joy. Since Boston is no stranger to snowstorms, we found ourselves snowed in on many an occasion. So, everyone who thought that adopting a pet as an undergraduate was irresponsible probably hadn’t taken that into consideration. Enzo kept us all quite busy.
But to our advantage we were quite a few in number. So, there was always someone taking care of the little guy while one of us was at class. The toughest part, I’d have to say, was deciding who was going to take Enzo back home with them after we graduated. My roommate Sanya was the lucky one!
Enzo is now the most well-travelled dog out there. Born in Boston, raised in New Delhi, and currently residing in London, England – he has surely travelled more than most.

A dog in college was a crazy idea but taught me so much about responsibility than any lectures on ethics could have. And the way he warmed my heart will always stay with me as a memory.


Mehr Talwar


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