What is HIP? 

The Heights Introduction Program (HIP) is a mentorship program and an opportunity for all underclassmen interested in getting involved with The Heights, Boston College’s only independent student newspaper, during the fall semester. With HIP, students will gain immediate exposure to college journalism. The HIP application can be found at the bottom of this page, or at the link below. Once members are accepted, they promptly begin to learn about the different aspects that The Heights offers. We understand that while many newcomers are interested in writing, some have talents in design, photography, multimedia, and business. Two weeks into the program, students are paired with one of the 42 Heights editors based on their interests.

These editors work as mentors and come from all sections on the paper, including photography, design, business, and the editorial content sections. Not only do the mentors teach skills like how to write a first article, lay out a page, photograph an event, or sell an ad, but they also serve as an immediate upperclassman mentor and friend.

We want interested students, especially freshman and transfers, to feel included in The Heights community. This program requires a strong time commitment and meetings are held each Wednesday in the newsroom so that mentees will get a feel for the fast-paced environment with which the editors work. HIP recruits interested and dedicated students who are eager to work for this exclusive program. No prior experience is necessary, but passion and excitement is encouraged. If you have any questions, contact Kelsey McGee at [email protected]. The HIP application is now open, and can be found  in the Google Form at the bottom of this page.

You can also click here to fill out the HIP application.

Important Dates

  • Involvement Fair: Friday, Sept. 1
  • Heights information session: Monday, Sept. 11
  • HIP app due: Friday, Sept. 15
  • HIP interviews: Monday Sept. 18 to Wednesday, Sept. 20
  • HIP decisions released: Friday, Sept. 22
  • HIP begins: Wednesday, Sept. 27

From FLIP to HIP

Why the change from the Freshman Leadership Initiative Program (FLIP) to HIP? As we transition from a twice-weekly print schedule and move toward an online focus, we need not just dedicated freshmen, but students of all ages, who wish to engage with us on a deeper level. In previous years, only freshmen were admitted, and paired immediately with their mentors during the first week—these meetings were not held in the newsroom. HIP requires a stronger time commitment, streamlining mentees to become staff writers, photographers, and ad staffers. Each week will center around a different journalistic focus: editorial, multimedia, design, web, and business. HIP is open to receptive and engaged students who will produce content each week. Instead of pairing students with their mentors immediately, they will first get a taste of each section before tailoring their interests and working in small groups. We hope that this evolution from FLIP to HIP will draw interested and involved freshmen to The Heights. HIP is open to all students in the Classes of 2019, 2020, and 2021.

Where have alumni gone on to work?

  1. Wall Street Journal
  2. CBS News
  3. The Boston Globe
  4. The Boston Herald
  5. Boston Magazine
  6. New York Magazine
  7. Vanity Fair
  8. ELLE Magazine
  9. GQ
  10. Forbes
  11. ESPN
  12. NESN.com
  13. The National Review
  14. WCVB – Channel 5 Boston
  15. CSN New England
  16. Washington Post Express
  17. Food & Wine Magazine
  18. New England Patriots
  19. Boston Red Sox
  20. Atlanta Falcons
  21. Major League Baseball
  22. Oxford University Press
  23. Penguin Random House
  24. Production for Dancing with the Stars
  25. Columbia Journalism Graduate School

Hear from our Editors

NewsThe news section makes up most of The Heights's front-page content and covers anything and everything that's going on at Boston College that isn't arts- or sports-related. We cover campus activism and demonstrations; student government; the administration; BC's impact nationally; notable alumni and speakers on campus; special interest stories—really anything you can think of that matters to the BC community, we write about it. Incoming staff writers form the heart of the section and The Heights as a whole, and are our biggest asset. You can be as involved as you want, writing only occasionally, or you can write several times a week—it's up to you. Underclassmen generally enter in the fall as junior-level reporters (covering student government, special interest pieces, speakers of note, faculty and BC's several schools, and other stories they want to pitch or that the editors assign) and then work their way up to more senior reporter positions like covering the central administration and campus activism. Underclassmen reporters are also involved with story pitch meetings, and our goal is that you become content creators in your own right, and really make The Heights your home. Contact [email protected] for more details.
SportsTasked with covering all 33 varsity teams at BC, the sports section never sleeps. Stories are assigned during section meetings on Wednesday afternoons, with pieces ranging from features to game stories to columns. Our content is driven by exclusive access to athletes, coaches, and practices. Writers will have access to games, work with coaches and players, and build relationships within the athletics’ department. Not only is content featured in print, but is also spread over several social media platforms, including our official (and verified) Heights Sports Twitter page. No experience is necessary to write for the sports section—editors will work with staffers to plan, structure, and fine-tune articles. Contact [email protected] for more details on how to get involved.
SceneThe Scene section of The Heights harbors some of the most thought-provoking content and delves into all forms of media and arts. Writers are asked to analyze plays, bands, and dances—both on and off campus. On the big and small screens, critics craft arguments about the content and merit of film and television. On the airwaves, audio aficionados evaluate albums and singles released by both professional and BC artists throughout the year. As much of the writing in the Arts section is subjective, writers are able to use a more personalized voice to shine through. Working with the Scene section gives its writers many press opportunities. Dedicated contributors receive access to weekly movie screenings, free admission to theatre performances, admission to concerts (like Boston Calling), and much more. If you are interested in anything having to do with the arts world, (film, TV, music, theatre, fashion, concerts, etc.) the section welcomes those with a keen aesthetic eye. Contact [email protected] for more details.
FeaturesThe features section typically writes profiles on professors, students, and groups on campus who are doing something impactful or significant, as well as longer pieces that look at campus happenings and trends. By writing for features, editors will help you gain interview and communication skills, refine your writing style, and shape you into a storyteller. Features is often a little looser than news, giving you room to be creative and personalize your piece. If you're interested in writing for features or just want to learn more about the section, email [email protected], and you will be added to our listserv. We also hold meetings on Sundays at 4 p.m. in the first floor lobby of Mac.
MetroThe metro section covers all off-campus life, connecting BC students with the Chestnut Hill community, the city of Boston, and beyond. Stories range from coverage of the area’s hottest restaurants and exhibitions, to the local political and tech scene. Metro writers often receive special access to events around Boston, new exhibitions, and restaurant openings. Writing for the metro section gives staffers exposure to the city, and is a great way for young writers to learn the ins-and-outs of Boston. The metro section always needs writers, so those interested can email [email protected] to get more info about becoming a contributing or staff writer for the section.  
PhotoThe Heights photo team works to cover all sections, events, and topics on the paper, ranging from concerts in the greater-Boston area to protests happening right in O’Neill Plaza. By working with the photo team, you will be exposed to every aspect of The Heights, while developing your photography skills and talents. Editors will work with staffers to learn the proper techniques and functions of a camera. Through working on the photo team, you will also gain experience with post-processing software and have the ability to create a professional portfolio. No prior experience in necessary and cameras are provided by The Heights. Photo meetings normally take place on Sundays at 7 p.m. Contact [email protected] for more information.
MultimediaHeights Multimedia is responsible for developing engaging media, not traditionally produced by our other sections. This currently entails creating video content with the content sections, planning and producing Heights podcasts, and assisting in areas where the "multimedia skill set" may be useful, like making GIFs to complement articles. In fall 2017, we will be looking to develop a staff to help film events and features, assist with the podcast, and edit content. Meetings will take place on a weekly basis, and will be focused on assigning projects and developing skills in filming, recording and software for multimedia. Contact [email protected] for more details.
SocialAs journalism undergoes the shift to a more digital-focused field, there has never been a more vital time for effective and engaging social media content. The Heights social media director works closely with the online editor to create, schedule, and post daily, consistent, and quality content to our social media feeds. As a part of the social media team, you will learn to manage our Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Snapchat accounts, along with any additional social media outlets that may be explored by The Heights. The social media team fields questions and requests from all sections of the board daily, and therefore must be always responsive and in constant communication. The social media director is someone with a passion for digital communication and a deep interest in emerging technologies. This curiosity is necessary to help broaden The Heights' reach, increase its digital presence, and keep the publication current, as the field is ever-changing. This position calls for any tech-crazed media junkie who understands that social media has an increasing role in news outlets, and that Instagram is far more than just a place to post pictures of your latte. Currently, there is no formal or weekly social media meeting, but all interested individuals may contact Heights social media director Hannah McLaughlin via email at [email protected] with any questions.
CreativeAnyone interested in graphic design or page layout is welcome to shadow the creative corner team. While there is not currently any designated staff, editors are excited to share technique, give out assignments, and help develop new designers. By working with the creative corner, you will be exposed to programs including Photoshop, InDesign, and Illustrator. You will have the opportunity to grow your creative portfolio, and see your work come to fruition online and in print. The creative corner is working to develop online, dynamic graphics, in addition to classic, print-based designs. No experience is necessary, but you must be willing to learn and practice. Contact [email protected] for more details.
BusinessThere's no other place on campus where you can get an authentic business experience quite like The Heights. As BC's premier independent student organization, we don't receive any funding from the University—all efforts come from you. Ads staffers get real, hands-on experience at selling ads and negotiating with potential clients from local and national businesses. It's a great opportunity for those in CSOM and MCAS who want to secure both jobs and internships in the worlds of marketing, sales, and finance. For more information, contact [email protected]