News, On Campus

Student-Planned Pizza Party Brings Hundreds of Undergraduates to Upper Campus

Hundreds of Boston College students cheered “Jacob, Jacob” as Jacob Elias walked onto the Upper Campus Basketball Courts Sunday evening for the “Jacob Elias Pizza Party.”

“It was the most magnificent pizza party—and probably event—that Upper [Campus] has ever experienced in the history of Boston College,” Martin Brozman, MCAS ’25, said. “The turnout was magnificent. The execution of the planning committee was marvelous. And the pizza tasted phenomenal.”

Elias, CSOM ’25, said he spent nearly $1,000 of his meal plan to supply the BC community with 60 pizzas, as well as 48 brownies and cookies, from Lower Dining Hall.

As the semester nears an end, Elias said he had too much money left over on his meal plan and wanted to give back to the BC community.

“I overheard some of my roommates talking about [a Gavel article] that basically said you can host a pizza party with your meal plan money,” he said. “And I said, ‘Hey, I have about $1,200, why not just do something to give back, you know, because I’m leaving soon.’”

Elias said he wanted to create a space for BC students to destress from final exams and to provide food for those who have less meal plan money.

“I personally don’t even eat a lot of BC dining food, which for me, I think is actually a privilege because a lot of people don’t have that luxury,” Elias said. “A lot of people can go out to eat, and a lot of people can do Uber Eats, but I know that a lot of low-income students don’t have that privilege. So I knew how important this would be for some people, so I decided to get as much pizza as I could.”

Elias said that the Office of Residential Life contacted him with concerns about the event and advised him that he should cancel it.

“[ResLife] gave amazing points [over the phone],” Elias said. “[ResLife] mentioned how it’s quiet hours 24/7 [for exams] … and we made sure everything was quiet and peaceful. I understand a lot of people are studying.”

After the call, Elias posted on Instagram to inform students that no alcohol would be allowed at the event.

“I made it very clear, BCPD will shut it down if you drink,” Elias said. “Don’t pregame, don’t come intoxicated, don’t put clear liquor in a water bottle and try to get away, just don’t, because this event is for the people.”

ResLife did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

According to Jayne Mcguire, MCAS ’25, many students learned about the event through Herrd—an anonymous social media app popular among BC students. Others, she said, found out through Elias’ Instagram post.

“So I saw a bunch of Herrd posts, Instagram stories, Snapchat stories,” Mcguire said. “I think it was all over the media, and I think the influence of free food drew a lot of attention to the event.”

The event was set to start at 7:30 p.m., but Mcguire said she was disappointed when she arrived on time and there was no pizza.

“I thought the crowd was fun to see, but I personally didn’t get any pizza, and I kind of thought it was a little bit disappointing to see that so many people showed up and then it was gone by 7:29,” Mcguire said.

Kate Zgonena, MCAS ’25, said some students piled on top of each other to try and secure a slice of pizza.

“I did see people fighting,” Zgonena said. “They were on the ground all piled up on top of each other. It was insane.”

At the end of the event, Elias gave a speech explaining his desire to give back to the BC community, saying he “did it for the people.” The crowd then chanted his name and eventually began singing “Happy Birthday,” although, according to Elias, his birthday is not for months.

“My birthday is July 31,” Elias said. “I guess people just did it for fun.”

Although she initially was unsure if the event would be a success, Zgonena said she wants it to become a tradition.

“I think the turnout is great,” Zgonena said. “He needs to do this [for] the next three years now. Honestly, I don’t know what I expected coming into this, but this is cool.”

BC Dining did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

May 9, 2022