Over the past 30 years, Unique Venues has partnered with a number of North American colleges and universities to help create an extensive network of distinct event venues. When most people think of colleges, they immediately associate them with their educational foundations. While this is the primary function of colleges and universities, many of their beautiful and historical buildings also serve as great venue spaces for the public. Recognizing the potential to expand their public presence and grow engagement, more colleges and universities are welcoming the idea of serving as public venues for special occasions and corporate events. One of our partner universities in particular that has created a thriving on-campus event center that caters to this need is Boston University.
Situated along the Charles River and Kenmore Square, Boston University boasts a main campus of 135 acres. This sprawling, urban university is located just minutes from the bustling heart of Boston. Its prime location allows the university to fully encompass the diverse, vibrant landscape that Boston has become known for. In the eyes of Shane Cutler, General Manager for The Boston University Events and Conferences, that is what truly makes the venues at Boston University one-of-a-kind.
Having venues that people genuinely love and seek out can make the process of running an on-campus event center much easier than other locations that rely on outreach bookings. According to Shane, Boston University’s two most sought after on-campus venues are the George Sherman Union and the Metcalf Trustee Center. These two beautiful and distinct Boston event venues give occupants two varying perspectives of the campus and city. Located in the center of campus, the George Sherman Union not only serves as the main student center, but it also operates as the premier central campus events facility. This multi-use building has housed programming events from large conferences to award ceremonies and banquets. On the other hand, the Metcalf Trustee Center, located on the ninth floor of One Silber Way, is the quintessential Boston ballroom. Featuring a pre-function lounge with floor-to-ceiling windows, gorgeous crystal chandeliers, and informal seating areas, the Metcalf Trustee Center has served as the ideal place for weddings, corporate meetings, and elegant affairs.
In addition to special occasions, Boston University’s George Sherman Union and Metcalf Trustee Center are home to over 10 different types of annual events. “Boston University hosts events from adult faculty academic symposiums and religious conferences to social celebratory events and corporate trainings”, says Shane. “In 2016, our largest event was a 3-day national program from 1,000 high school students. [The purpose of this program was to] cultivate career growth [within the students] into becoming accomplished teachers.”
With 250 campus clubs and events, and a couple hundred more outside events all vying for space, balancing the needs of everyone interested in renting event venue space is no easy feat. In fact, a typical day for Shane and his department consists of developing ways to seamlessly integrate the needs of the client with the services of their University. “We’re working to form a partnership and trust bond with our clients to fully understand their program goals and events”, Shane comments. “Then we work with the University’s internal service providers and venue managers to deliver an event product that exceeds expectations”. Having a dedicated staff of professional individuals helps Boston University become the premier event location within the city.
When looking ahead at Boston University in regards to venue space, the opportunities are endless. On top of their already bustling resume of diverse events, the University hopes to see more corporate retreats, board meetings, banquets, and exclusive galas make use of their venue space. With the $750,000 renovation taking place in George Sherman Union and additional meeting venue renovations, that’s possible.
To learn more about Unique Venues partnership with Boston University and other colleges and universities, please visit www.uniquevenues.com/colleges-universities.