Student Athlete Support Services

Student-Athlete Support Services (SASS) exists to help student-athletes coordinate and balance their academic and athletic demands. The objective is to provide comprehensive services to support all student-athletes in their overall personal development and their pursuit of academic and athletic goals. One of the primary goals of SASS is to ensure that student-athletes are meeting University and NCAA standards while making appropriate progress toward a Boston University degree.  In essence, SASS staff are Academic Coordinator’s rather than Academic Advisor’s and are here to supplement and augment the efforts of the academic staffs in the schools/colleges. Our office is the liaison to the school/college advising offices, the faculty, Registrar’s Office, University Service Center, etc…We advocate for the student-athletes and assist them, if necessary in communicating with these staffs and offices.  
To meet identified needs of individual student-athletes and to ensure incoming freshmen are firmly established, weekly and bi-weekly meetings are scheduled with freshmen and also with individual students (at any class level) judged to be at risk. These meetings are an effort to take a proactive approach in addressing study skills strategies, transition issues, time management, open communication, and to ensure student-athletes are aware of BU and NCAA academic requirements. At the same time these appointments provide the student-athlete with information about the various on campus resources that are available for their use.

Elliott Cole Academic Support Center

The name of the space is the Elliott Cole Academic Support Center. The physical center can accommodate between 80 and 90 students at any given time and has study carrels, work tables, five small rooms for group study or tutorial work, a large conference room and four offices for staff.  The center has 10 desktop computers plus a printer.  The Cole Center is a wireless zone so student-athletes can use personal laptops. Two laptop computers are also available for sign-out use by student-athletes on road trips for competitions.

Athletic Directors

SASS Staff and Teams each oversee:

Director, Phil DeCarlo pdecarlo@bu.edu 353-6613- Men’s & Women’s Lacrosse, Men’s Ice Hockey, Men’s & Women’s Tennis

Associate Director, Jen Kentera jkentera@bu.edu 353-2740 Men’s Basketball, Women’s Soccer, Men’s & Women’s Swimming, Men’s Rowing, Softball, Women’s Ice Hockey

Assistant Director, Christine Passmore cpassmor@bu.edu 358-3382 Men’s & Women’s Cross Country, Men’s Soccer, Field Hockey, Women’s Basketball, Women’s Rowing, Men’s & Women’s Track & Field, Women’s Golf
Assistant Director, Heather McCarthy hcm@bu.edu 353-7128 Tutor Coordinator & Learning Specialist, does not have assigned teams

Tutoring Services

Freshmen student-athletes attend a mandatory study hall for a set number of hours a week during the first semester of study at Boston University.  After the initial semester, study hall can be mandated for student-athletes who fail to maintain a Grade Point Average (GPA) stipulated by coaching staffs, encountered academic difficulty, or simply need more structured study time. All student-athletes are encouraged to utilize the academic center/study hall regardless of academic year. The centers regular hours of operation are Monday-Thursday, 8:00 am-10:00 pm, Friday, 8:00 am-5:00 pm, and Sunday, 11:00 am-10:00 pm.

Study Hall

Freshmen student-athletes attend a mandatory study hall for a set number of hours a week during the first semester of study at Boston University.  After the initial semester, study hall can be mandated for student-athletes who fail to maintain a Grade Point Average (GPA) stipulated by coaching staffs, encountered academic difficulty, or simply need more structured study time. All student-athletes are encouraged to utilize the academic center/study hall regardless of academic year. The centers regular hours of operation are Monday-Thursday, 8:00 am-10:00 pm, Friday, 8:00 am-5:00 pm, and Sunday, 11:00 am-10:00 pm.

Academic Progress Monitoring and Reporting

Progress reports are requested each semester from faculty members through the faculty/staff link.  Reports are requested for (a) all freshmen student-athletes (b) any athlete not meeting a GPA threshold stipulated by a coach, and (c) student-athletes for whom a report is judged necessary or helpful by a coach—irrespective of a specific “trigger”.  The information in reports is discussed with student-athletes and is forwarded to coaching staffs. Follow up with the student-athlete, faculty member, tutors, and coaching staffs is ongoing throughout the semester for student-athlete’s receiving negative feedback on the reports.

Travel Letters

 From time to time student-athletes may miss class due to athletic competition. For this reason travel letters are provided to all student-athletes who will be traveling and/or competing as a representative of the University. Student-athletes are asked to provide a travel letter to each of their faculty members, discussion professors and lab instructors. We strongly urge them to make arrangements to make up any missed lecture notes, class work, discussions and/or labs. We also ask them to work with their professors as far in advance as possible to make alternative arrangements for exams or quizzes scheduled during travel and competition. For tournament, postseason and championship play student-athletes will be provided a travel letter separate from, and in addition to, the regular season travel letter.

Injury, Surgery, Hospital Stays

Unfortunately, over the course of a student-athletes four years at BU they may sustain an injury or be required to spend a night or a few days in the hospital. When injuries occur that may impact a student-athletes ability to attend class, we ask the student-athlete to correspond directly with each faculty member. In instances when a student-athlete is unable to notify their professors or more detailed information needs to be provided, a staff member from Student-Athlete Support Services will reach out to professors. If a student-athlete is diagnosed with a concussion by the medical staff in the athletics department, that student-athlete will receive an official letter from the treating physician. The student-athlete is then asked to provide this letter as official documentation of the head injury to all his/her faculty members.