It’s approaching two years (shudder) since I graduated from Boston College, a fact with which I have finally come to terms. This process has been helped along by return visits to campus where Stokes Hall has finally been completed, where O’Neill Plaza is no longer a cement fortress, and where our once beautiful Quad has been rendered unrecognizable and utterly characterless. When you graduate, BC moves on, preparing itself for the future and the next class of Eagles. You will always carry your memories of BC, but BC will march forward without even noticing that you are gone.
However, there is one exception. BC will always remember you as a source of money. I can’t even begin to tell you how many emails I have received from BC asking for a donation. Do you want a BC calendar? Donate. BC is in the Beanpot! Donate. The Beanpot is tonight! Donate.
I get it. Donations are important. They help to fund the things we love about BC, as well as giving BC the chance to move up in college ranking surveys, thereby enabling us to feel ever more proud of our degrees. But I’ve finally reached the point where BC’s never-ending quest to squeeze every last dime out of us has disgusted me.
Recently, I received an email from my local alumni chapter informing me of a Mass to be celebrated at Georgetown with Dean Joseph O’Keefe. Realizing that it has been quite some time since I’ve attended Mass, I thought this would be a great opportunity to reconnect with my Catholic self.
But this being BC, there’s a catch-you have to pay to attend this Mass. Really? I have to pay to attend a Mass being held for alumni? Granted, the cost is only $15 dollars, but is BC really so money-hungry that it needs to ask us to pay to go to Mass? While there is a reception being held afterward, I don’t feel the need to gorge myself on free food and drink (assuming it is even free). It would be lovely to share time in the BC and religious communities, but I don’t feel compelled to pay to do so.
Perhaps it was naive of me to believe that I would ever be anything more to Boston College than a dollar sign-a source of income for four years and then hopefully a donor until death.
I write this as a warning to the Class of 2014. I wish I had known that once I walked across the stage at Alumni Stadium, I’d be nothing more than a stream of income to the place I love so much.
Janine A. Hanrahan