Academic Life

bamboo coral

Prof. LaVigne and Students Decipher How Past Oceans Responded to Climate Change

Assistant Professor of Earth and Oceanographic Science Michéle LaVigne has a National Science Foundation grant to research deep-sea bamboo corals and what they can tell us about the connections between the ocean depths and climate.

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Karina Graeter ’14 Publishes Research in Mineralogy Journal

Karina Graeter, who graduated in 2014, is the lead author of an article published in this month’s issue of the journal American Mineralogist.

kennebec river

Students Help Restore Maine’s Ecology

This summer, a group of students worked with John Lichter, Bowdoin professor of biology and environmental studies, on research that can support the restoration of Maine’s rivers, estuaries and coastal fisheries.


Prof. Nat Wheelwright Honored For Ecological Teaching

The Ecological Society of America has presented Nat Wheelwright, Bowdoin’s Anne T. and Robert M. Bass Professor of Natural Sciences, with an award recognizing his “outstanding contribution to ecology” through teaching and mentoring.


Mothers and Martyrs: Apekshya Prasai ’16 on Women’s Role in Militant Insurgencies

Apekshya Prasai ’16 was two years old when the Maoist insurgency broke out in her home country of Nepal. Now, she’s researching women’s roles in the movement’s militarized political violence.


Bowdoin Economist Assesses Impact of Endangered Species Act

Assistant Professor of Economic Erik Nelson has found that the Endangered Species Act has made no discernible impact on what people do or don’t do on environments considered critical to listed species’ persistence.


Repairing the ‘Leaky Pipeline’ of Women in STEM: Clare Boothe Luce Fellows Discuss Their Research

Megan Maher ’16 and Meg Freiberger ’16 are this year’s recipients of the Clare Boothe Luce Fellowship, which is targeted at women doing research in the STEM fields of science, technology, engineering and math.

leah zuo

Professor Leah Zuo Discusses ‘Science’ in Premodern China, the Relevance of Confucius Today and Her Current Projects

After receiving a couple of fellowships, Leah Zuo has a generous sabbatical in front of her to finish her first book and begin her second. At the moment she is completing a book about the famous Chinese figure Shen Gua (1031-1095), who is credited with making a number of startling discoveries well ahead of his time.


Searching for Sweet Victory in the Battle Against H. pylori

This summer, Professor Danielle Dube and her student researchers — Ian Kline ’15, Jared Feldman ’16, Brigitte McFarland ’18 and Hal Miller ’16 —are developing therapies to fight a dangerous bacterial pathogen called H. pylori.

Kylie and Jacob in Nyhus lab

Making Waves: Erika Nyhus’ Lab Explores Memory and Attention

This summer, Assistant Professor of Neuroscience and Psychology Erika Nyhus is working with four student researchers — Kylie Moore ’16, Helen Wieffering ’16, Jacob MacDonald ’16, and Andrew Engel ’16 — exploring memory, attention and the human brain.

pieter martino

Mussels, Snails, Sea Stars: A Summer of Research at the Coastal Studies Center

This summer, scientists and students are conducting research at the Coastal Studies Center in its recently refurbished and expanded marine lab. They are looking into the life histories and adaptability of sea stars, mussels, sea urchins, mud snails and other organisms.

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A Year of Faculty Grants, Fellowships and Honors

Over the past year, Bowdoin faculty from every corner of campus received grants and fellowships to support new and ongoing research projects. Others were honored for their work.

deb degraff

Economist Deb DeGraff Studies Effects of Mexico’s Aging Population

Bowdoin Professor of Economics Deborah DeGraff is exploring a world of new data coming out of a groundbreaking study in Mexico that is following older people over many years.

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Kent Island Life: Student Muralists Create Low-tide Landscapes

This summer, Tracey Faber ’16 and Isaac Jaegerman ’16 are creating a life-size mural of the intertidal zone — the area that is under water during high tide and exposed during low tide — at the Grand Manan Museum on Grand Manan Island, neighbor to Kent Island.

Digital and Computational Studies

Students at Forefront of New Academic Initiative at Bowdoin

This summer, Sabina Hartnett ’18, Phoebe Bumsted ’17, Hannah Rafkin ’17, and Gabriella Papper ’18 are engaged in their own digital and computational research and helping Professor Hall develop a curriculum for her fall semester Introduction to Digital Humanities class.

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Earth Science Women’s Network Spotlights Bowdoin Professor

An organization that promotes the careers of women in the geosciences has profiled Michèle LaVigne, an assistant professor of earth and oceanographic science.

2015 Gibbons fellows copy

Bowdoin’s Gibbons Fellows Get Technical

Several students this summer have a unique opportunity from Bowdoin to find creative technical answers to academic questions. They are part of the Gibbons Summer Research Program, established by John Gibbons ’64, which enables students to work one-on-one with professors to apply technology to aspects of faculty research or work..

Kent Island Life: Katie Craighill ’17 Creates Habitat Management Plan

Read how Katie Craighill ’17 is drawing up a management plan for the island to protect it for native species and researchers well into the future, as told by Emily Weyrauch ’17 in the latest installment of her series on Kent Island life.


Kent Island Life: Going With the Intertidal Flow

Rising sophomore Emma Greenberg is working at the island’s Bowdoin Scientific Station this summer on an experiment in the intertidal zone, the area that is under water during high tide and exposed during low tide. She is studying the population of soft-shelled clams and their predation by the invasive green crab species in the area.

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Kent Island Life: Investigating the Decline of Herring Gulls

Clare Schollaert ’16 is spending her summer at the Bowdoin Scientific Station on Kent Island in New Brunswick, Canada, conducting field research on herring gulls and their foraging habits to try to understand why their population is declining.