Over 50 first-year and upperclass students gathered in Daggett Lounge this week for the year’s first meeting of Generous Enthusiasts, a mentoring initiative launched in 2012. The program matches interested first-years with juniors and seniors, allowing older generations to hand down wisdom gained through years at Bowdoin.
Jordan Goldberg ’14 and Emma Johnson ’14 put together this year’s group of Enthusiasts. “We sell it as a mentoring program but it’s really more than just about creating inter-class friendships,” Johnson said. “[It’s about] giving the first years a chance to connect, and the seniors a chance to give back and reflect on their years.”
Goldberg and Johnson spent much of the fall semester planning the program and recruiting interested upperclass students. Over winter break, students were paired up based on mutual interests they described in a survey.
Enthusiasts are free to do whatever activities they want, from grabbing a meal in a dining hall to catching a movie in Brunswick. The relaxed nature of the program allows students to be creative and take advantage of what they have in common.
“Generous Enthusiasts is a great way to learn about Bowdoin in an informal and fun setting,” said Janet Lohmann, dean of first-year students.
But why the name Generous Enthusiasts? The unusual moniker comes from a line in “The Offer of the College,” the famous poem by William DeWitt Hyde, a former president of the college. Bowdoin offers a place “to lose yourself in generous enthusiasms” – an appropriate description for the generous and enthusiastic mentors of 2014.