Spending a Summer on an Island of Birds

Marissa Browning-Kamins ’16 lived on a 24-acre island off the coast of southern Maine this summer, protecting and gathering data about colonies of nesting terns. She had a fellowship to join the National Audubon Society’s Project Puffin, a longterm restoration project for some of Maine’s coastal seabirds. This Story Map is best viewed in its own window.

Read the News story here.

President and Deans Welcome Incoming Students to Bowdoin

Continuing a Bowdoin tradition, students new to the College gathered late Saturday afternoon on the Bowdoin Quad to be officially greeted by the president and other College officials.

Before Bowdoin President Clayton Rose addressed the class from the steps of the Walker Art Building, Dean of First Year Students Janet Lohmann and Dean of Admissions and Student Aid Scott Meiklejohn gave brief remarks. “I believe I speak for all of the faculty, staff, administrators and current students to express how delighted and enthusiastic we are to see you all gathered here,” Lohmann said.

Meiklejohn said this event was his favorite moment, when he saw all of the students come together as a class for the first time. He then introduced Rose, Bowdoin’s 15th president.

Rose began, “I am delighted to have my chance to welcome you, and to share a few thoughts about Bowdoin and the community you’ve joined and that will forever be a part of you. When you accepted our offer of admission you understood what a special place Bowdoin is. And after your trips I suspect you know it to be even more special than you realized.”

The president urged the students to “forge real and lasting relationships with your professors,” whom he praised for not only being great scholars and artists, but for also being “simply amazing, and among the finest and most dedicated teachers in American education.”

While Rose encouraged students to strive for excellence, he asked them to not be afraid of failing — and to expect to be rattled at times.

“A liberal arts education and intellectual experience is about being uncomfortable, and at times even rattled,” he said. “A great liberal arts education is not easy; by its nature it cannot be. But it will be deeply rewarding, and it will set you on a path to ambitiously engage the world, to continue learning, to confront hard problems, and to enjoy success. You will learn new ways of thinking about old problems, you will test ideas you hold dear, and reaffirm many of them, and perhaps adjust a few. …If you think the same way, and think about the same things in the same way four years from now, something has gone wrong.”

Watch the full event here and see a slideshow here. Read Clayton Rose’s welcome address here.

Video: Move-In Day Impressions from the Class of 2019

Last week Bowdoin welcomed approximately 500 incoming first years to campus. Reporters Talia Cowen ’16 and Elina Zhang ’16 caught up with a few of them before they left for their pre-orientation trips to ask them about their first impressions of starting college.

Read more about move-in day and orientation for the Class of 2016.


Passamaquoddy Frances Soctomah ’14 Weaves Past and Present

frances-soctomah-256x397When Frances Soctomah makes Wabanaki baskets, she uses softened wood cut from ash trees and sweetgrass collected from salt marshes. As she weaves, she is carrying on a long Passamaquoddy tradition.

While baskets are an important part of her culture, they also play a big role in Soctomah’s family, who live in Indian Township, Maine. Her grandmother, Molly Neptune Parker, is a master basketmaker and recipient of a 2015 Bowdoin College honorary degree. Parker helped found the Maine Indian Basketmakers Alliance in 1993 to resurrect a tradition she saw disappearing from Maine’s Wabanaki people — the Maliseets, Micmacs, Passamaquoddies and Penobscots.

This summer, Soctomah had a Robert S. Goodfriend Summer Internship grant from Bowdoin to work for the alliance. Read more.

Nicole Von Wilczur ’18 Researches the Parental Roots of Human Temperament


Nicole Von Wilczur ‘18

Temperament is, most basically, all of the intrinsic characteristics of an individual’s personality. Despite this, it’s a relatively under-studied part of psychology.

This summer, Nicole Von Wilczur ’18 helped Professor of Psychology Samuel Putnam with his research temperament in young children, while also working at the Children’s Center, where she often had to to moderate the temperaments of toddlers.

Learn more about Von Wilczur’s summer research, and her ideal harmony of on-campus jobs.