A wealth of projects and programs were showcased at the McKeen Center’s Spring Symposium, Bowdoin and the Common Good. Posters, presentations, photographs, and video were on display in the Morrell Lounge of the Smith Union, representing more than sixty examples of Bowdoin’s commitment to the wider community.
About 1,000 students, more than half of the student body, participate in McKeen Center programs each year. Out of this large group, the McKeen Center each year highlights a few students, staff, and community members for their contributions to the community at its annual Awards Ceremony for Community Engagement and Commitment to the Common Good.
The Common Good Grant Program began in 2001, when an anonymous donor began contributing $10,000 to Bowdoin annually for students to distribute to local agencies who are searching for funding to jumpstart new initiatives and to support existing programs.
Erin Johnson, a visiting assistant professor in the departments of Visual Arts and Digital and Computational Studies at Bowdoin, is being recognized for making public service an integral part of her classes.
There was no arguing, there were no raised voices and there was no attempt to change anybody’s mind. The contentious issue of gun rights came to Bowdoin’s gun-free campus on April 4, 2018.
Over Spring Break, over fifty students travelled to six different locations across the world with the Bowdoin McKeen Center’s Alternative Spring Break program. It is a tradition at Bowdoin that these students gather again, soon after they have returned to campus, for an evening of reflection, hosted by the McKeen Center for the Common Good.
Ben Ray ’20 said he jumped at the chance to help launch the inaugural CCLIMB group. The acronym stands for creating compassionate leadership in Maine boys. “I’m an education student and I’m a student of gender and women’s students,” he said. “I believe gender is not talked about enough at schools, and ignoring it is actively causing problems in our society.”
From Sicily to Silicon Valley, from the Big Apple to the Big Easy, students traveled far and wide over spring break on a variety of trips, some of them academic in nature, some cultural, and some service-oriented, but all of them aimed at enhancing the undergraduate experience at Bowdoin beyond the classroom.