Each year, an average of 500 students graduate from Bowdoin College and go off to start their careers. However, some stay right here on campus or find themselves back within the community just a couple of years later as alumni-turned-employees. We spoke with a few recent graduates and asked them to explain what they enjoy most having been a student, and now working at the college.
During school, Michael Colbert ’16, worked as a tour guide and interviewer in Admissions. After graduating, he decided to teach in Japan for a year. Being away gave Michael the opportunity to reflect and he explained that, “as a student I really loved the community, the level of honesty, and engagement. After being away, it brought to focus how much I missed Bowdoin and working with students. This is a great place to be!” Michael was hired as an Admissions Counselor, and as an employee, has come to enjoy the benefit of participating in campus events and auditing a class on food writing.
Margot Haines ’13, a native of Yarmouth, wasn’t sure she’d stay in Maine when initially considering colleges– “I always envisioned leaving Maine, but fell in love during a visit and ended up applying early decision to Bowdoin. I had four wonderful years here as a student and now five years as an employee. Bowdoin has a real draw that has made it difficult to imagine leaving.”
Mariette Aborn ’17 who, like Michael, has worked the last year as an Admissions Counselor expressed that, “I am grateful for the connections I have had with students, faculty and staff – these powerful relationships have allowed me to develop professionally, cultivate connections and reaffirms the work I do”.
Hilda Njanike ’17 felt when the time came to graduate, that she was just getting to know Bowdoin. Hilda had spent her junior year abroad as a participant in a small program in Botswana. Her visit to Botswana took her outside of her comfort zone. Reflecting back, she is grateful for the experience, personal growth, and development. When she returned to campus for her final year, she made the intentional choice to continue meeting new people and open herself to as many new opportunities as possible. The Alumni Relations Associate position became available and she explained that, “I felt like it was made for me and thus, it made sense for me to pursue it. I really enjoyed my senior year and I wanted to stay beyond the standard four years. Meeting with the Alumni Relations team was such a positive and affirming experience and it reinforced everything I love about Bowdoin. As an undergraduate, I was so focused on being a student but now I get to see and be a part of the various units that make Bowdoin tick and be all that it is”.
Sarah Wilson ’17 has found her way as an Educator at the Bowdoin College Children’s Center. As a student, she studied Neuroscience and Education. She knew she wanted to work closely with children in a way that would be rewarding and offer challenge. She said, “When this opportunity popped up it just seemed perfect. This is a fulfilling job and I feel fortunate to have landed here. The environment at the Children’s Center is both challenging and supportive – I get to work at the top of my field and I like what I am doing – that excites me!” She also enjoys interacting with the interns and seeing their connection with classes and the work they are doing at the Children’s Center.
Emily Murray ’14 also works at the Children’s Center. Upon graduating from Bowdoin, she pursued a Master of Science in Early Childhood Education at the University of Maine at Farmington. When she saw an opening at the Children’s Center, she applied and was hired. Emily said, “I love working for the center because of its nature-based curriculum and philosophy, which fit with my personal views and my love of the outdoors. As a native Mainer and Bowdoin grad, I love staying connected to Maine and to the campus. Seeing former professors, working with Sarah-we played rugby together at Bowdoin-, and feeling like I am contributing to the school in new ways, have all been really fulfilling for me.”