Brunswick, ME
Bowdoin College


39 Ratings

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Recent Reviews

Bevan
What is your overall opinion of this school?

The best thing about Bowdoin is that fact that I just spent twenty minutes trying to pick my favorite thing about my school.

What is your overall opinion of this school?

The best thing about Bowdoin is that fact that I just spent twenty minutes trying to pick my favorite thing about my school.

Describe the students at your school.

Bowdoin students are happiest when they're busy. But that doesn't mean we hide in the libraries doing work. Students here like to explore and try new things, as dorky as that sounds. We pretty much make sure we fill up our schedules with as many extracurriculars as we can handle.

Here's your chance: Say anything about your college!

It's worth coming here just to live in a freshman dorm.

Is the stereotype of students at your school accurate?

There is definitely a large contingent of preppy, athletic, white, New Englanders on campus, but I wouldn't say that this stereotype negatively effects the student body as a whole.

What are the academics like at your school?

Bowdoin students are not academically competitive with each other, just ourselves. We all know that we're all smart kids. Learning here is about self-satisfaction.

What are the most popular student activities/groups?

The College Houses really provide a great party atmosphere for the freshman. There is usually at least one campus-wide College House party each weekend, and all students know that they are welcome to attend. Freshman predominate the College House party scene, but it's a great, and comfortable, environment to meet people at the beginning of the year, and even later on. Plus, the parties (aka beer) are free, which never hurts.

What is the stereotype of students at your school?

Preppy, athletic, white, New Englanders.

Andy
What is your overall opinion of this school?

Bowdoin is like a large family. I know that sounds cliche, but it's true. There is not that much difference between seniors a...

What is your overall opinion of this school?

Bowdoin is like a large family. I know that sounds cliche, but it's true. There is not that much difference between seniors and freshman, people tend to get along pretty well no matter their age or different interests. A lot of the older students make the underclassmen feel involved and important. The faculty really cares about their subject and about the well-beings of the students in their classes. If a student is struggling, the faculty will seek them out and offer help. Brunswick is a small little town with fun restaurants and coffee shops. It's fun to get off campus for dinner or a study session every once in a while. Bowdoin students are very concerned about the environment, and ways in which the community can help. There is a lot of snow but it is also fairly sunny, and you acclimate to the cold very quickly. The two biggest complaints are the long winters and the idea of the "Bowdoin Bubble" in which you can easily forget there is a world outside of campus.

Describe the students at your school.

It is pretty diverse, a lot more than I thought it would be, at least. There are definitely groups still however. The middle-upper class family background is predominant on campus, however, students do not flaunt their financial background. It seems like 3 out of every 5 people you meet live in "boston".

Is the stereotype of students at your school accurate?

For the most part, except Bowdoin is a lot more diverse than some might realize.

What are the academics like at your school?

The academics are very rigorous. The teachers are great though and they know their stuff! It is a lot of work, but for the most part, is pretty interesting. I love the seminar classes. Mine only has 11 people and it is a discussion based class that helps us learn how to make the transition from high school to college classes. I like the idea of the requirements because it forces students to be exposed to new topics, and potentially uncover a hidden passion.

What are the most popular student activities/groups?

Very fun weekends. Thursday night pub night allows for good dancing. Friday and Saturdays are the same scene of a mixture of pre-gaming in the dorms, social house parties then an off-campus party. For the most part students study hard on week nights, and then go out hard on the weekends.

What is the stereotype of students at your school?

That they are intelligent, very active, even if they are not involved in a varsity sport. The majority are preppy and come from middle-upper class families.

Anna
What is your overall opinion of this school?

Bowdoin is a community, first and foremost. School is tough, but people are genuinely welcoming for the most part. Its a smal...

What is your overall opinion of this school?

Bowdoin is a community, first and foremost. School is tough, but people are genuinely welcoming for the most part. Its a small school so trying to avoid someone is not possible but that's okay because there aren't a lot of people you will want to avoid. Brunswick is not exactly a hopping town but it has a few cute restaurants and stores. Bowdoin's staff is amazing, as are most of the professors. Bowdoin is different from other schools just because of the feeling you get on campus. People are really enthusiastic and happy to be here. And its beautiful: the facilities are amazing. Oh and the food is the best.

Describe the students at your school.

Bowdoin has a reputation of being a rich, white kid school and this is not completely off. But you'll find the people you want to find here. There are rich white kids, but there are also kids from every other race and walk of life. Geographically it is mostly kids from the East Coast and California. Students tend to be opinionated and political but not overbearing. The school is pretty liberal and many kids really like to work on environmental issues.

Is the stereotype of students at your school accurate?

To some degree but not in a negative sense. Its certainly more diverse than people think and not everyone parties or is granola.

What are the academics like at your school?

Bowdoin is tough, even for the brightest kids. You can't come here and expect not to work hard. But in general people seem to be very interested in learning. I was really intimidated by the professors at first but they are really accommodating and willing to help. Bowdoin does have some requirements but they are pretty easy to fill. The one thing that is kinda of iffy is the freshmen seminar which tend to be either really bad or really good. And though the permanent staff at Bowdoin is sensational some visiting professors leave some thing to be desired.

What are the most popular student activities/groups?

A lot of people at Bowdoin play sports even if it is club but you won't feel left out if you don't. By the same token there are many people involved in community service projects of various kinds and a pretty strong theatre program. People at Bowdoin like to drink but there are things to do if you don't drink. A lot of social life focuses around the social house system especially for underclassmen. The dating scene is a little weird: there is definitely a lot of hooking up that goes on but also some serious relationships.

What is the stereotype of students at your school?

Bowdoin students are known as rich, white, preppy kids. They are known as smart but kids that like to party, and sometimes a little granola.

Cristina
What is your overall opinion of this school?

Bowdoin is what you make it. It can be friendly, fun and interesting, or it can be dry and stale. Different years at Bowdoin ...

What is your overall opinion of this school?

Bowdoin is what you make it. It can be friendly, fun and interesting, or it can be dry and stale. Different years at Bowdoin were completely different for me because of the different lifestyles and types people you can surround yourself with here. Bowdoin is small, which means your classes are excellent, people are friendly, and you can become deeply involved in clubs any. The administration is wonderful, the town is warm and friendly (even if the weather isn't) and there are plenty of opportunities to become involved off campus and to spend time outdoors. If you've got dreams this is a place that wants to help them come true.

Here's your chance: Say anything about your college!

OUR CAMPUS, BRUNSWICK AND MAINE ARE BEAUTIFUL! If you love to ski, be outdoors, bike or go to the beach, the opportunities to do so here are abundant.

Is the stereotype of students at your school accurate?

Sometimes, but this is not all encompassing.

What are the academics like at your school?

Professors know you well. There's a lot of work but if you manage your time well there's plenty of time to be involved in other activities and to spend time with your friends. Classes are interesting and participation is expected. Don't come here if you're not planning on showing up for class. Students are competitive but they compete more with themselves than with each other. Bowdoin allows you to experiment with different subject areas and to learn how different disciplines interact with each other. Bowdoin offers outstanding academic opportunities, regardless of whether study science, the arts or government or foreign languages.

What are the most popular student activities/groups?

There are more options if you have a car because you can spend more time off campus but there are always things to do. Most students spend their time on campus. The social life here is fairly inclusive compared to many other colleges. No fraternities or sororities here. There's A LOT of drinking, which can be fun, but there are also plenty of other activities if you prefer to spend your time in a different manner.

What is the stereotype of students at your school?

Preppy, snobby, granola. White. Privileged. Friendly. Competitive. Hard-drinkers. Nerdy. Hot. In shape. Snowy. Cold.

katherine
What is your overall opinion of this school?

The students are all very friendly and willing to help each other out. It's a close knit community. Security and the deans ...

What is your overall opinion of this school?

The students are all very friendly and willing to help each other out. It's a close knit community. Security and the deans are sometimes hypocritical with what they tell students

Describe the students at your school.

Students are generally very open and accepting. Different types of students interact with each other and are mostly liberal. It is a small community though so people know each other's business.

Here's your chance: Say anything about your college!

Bowdoin is great if you want small close knit community and like to be involved in extracurricular activities and still care about academics.

What are the academics like at your school?

Intense. Classes are small and professors make the effort to get to know the students and want students to do well. Sometimes it's hard to get into classes for your major which is frusrating

What are the most popular student activities/groups?

Mostly drinking on the weekends. Students also like sports and outdoor activities though. Skiing and outing club trips.

What is the stereotype of students at your school?

New England prep school kids make up a large portion of the student body. students are preppy and involved in lots of activities

Erica
What is your overall opinion of this school?

Bowdoin is small, so it's just the right size. I spend most of my time studying, rowing and going to concerts, parties, movi...

What is your overall opinion of this school?

Bowdoin is small, so it's just the right size. I spend most of my time studying, rowing and going to concerts, parties, movies, eating dinner with friends, etc.

Describe the students at your school.

Bowdoin has a great LGBT group and good pro-women organitions. The race-related student groups like the African American society sponser interesting events. I feel out of place because of coming from a poor, rural area. There are lots of religious organisations and they hold good events occasionally, but there are no atheist or free-thinker organizations. There are active political groups. Left is predominant, but the campus Republicans are also vocal. People don't really talk about what they'll earn.

Is the stereotype of students at your school accurate?

kind of- I've met people here who are richer than anyone I knew before coming to college

What are the academics like at your school?

All of my professors know my name- classes are usually very small. In my freshman year I had once class with almost a hundred students, but even then the professors knew me and did everything they could to get students to participate in class. This year one of my classes has six students, and none of them has over 35. Professors are almost always very accessible. My favorite class this semester is a German class called Robots, Vamps and Whores. I study every night. Class participation is common. Students aren't very competitive. The most unique class I took was Tasting Hierarchies, about food in Latin America. German is an interesting major with a small department. I go to office hours with most of my professors. The academic requirements aren't too strict. Education here is mostly about learning for its own sake.

What are the most popular student activities/groups?

Outing club is popular. I row with the crew team- it's a very friendly group of people. Some guest speakers are very popular- Eve Ensler and Christopher Hitchens each filled an auditorium. I met my friends through dorms, classes and crew. If I'm awake that late I'm doing homework. There are no frats or sororities. Last weekend I rowed and played my cello and repaired my bike. On Saturday nights there are chem-free parties and concerts and movies.

Paul
What is your overall opinion of this school?

Bowdoin is definitely too small of a school in too small of a town. The school by virtue of its size causes drama and gossip...

What is your overall opinion of this school?

Bowdoin is definitely too small of a school in too small of a town. The school by virtue of its size causes drama and gossip to travel quickly which probably makes Bowdoin students more uptight than they would be in a larger more anonymous environment. On the other hand, the small size of the school it creates a good environment for finding a great group of close friends.

Describe the students at your school.

While Bowdoin has a diverse student body that is comparable to the U.S.'s national racial makeup but within the school itself there is very little interracial group mixing.

Here's your chance: Say anything about your college!

People need to have more sex here!

Is the stereotype of students at your school accurate?

While there is certainly a lot of diversity at Bowdoin, I have found many of these stereotypes to be generally true.

What are the academics like at your school?

Due to Bowdoin's small class sizes it is very easy to develop close mentoring relationships with professors. Bowdoin has a very inclusive environment and students are generally supportive and helpful of each other.

What are the most popular student activities/groups?

The social life for the first-year students is quite open. The dorms provide forced diversity that goes away when students retreat into their friend groups sophomore year. The independent nature of the upper-class dorms really closes off the open contact that the freshman dorms provide.

What is the stereotype of students at your school?

Preppy New Englanders Overachievers Type A personalities Overly Athletic Uptight

Zac
What is your overall opinion of this school?

I love Bowdoin. Everyone is very friendly and welcomes you to Bowdoin. The social scene is what you make it. When I got here ...

What is your overall opinion of this school?

I love Bowdoin. Everyone is very friendly and welcomes you to Bowdoin. The social scene is what you make it. When I got here it was very bland... the pub on thursdays and social house parties friday and saturday. But this semester I have been having A LOT MORE fun! We go into town a lot more, which has an amazing amount of things to offer. The size is just right. People always think its awesome that I go to Bowdoin, dont know what it is, or gasp at how cold it must be. I spend most of my time in my dorm because our floor is very cohesive and we all really love to hang out with each other. The administration is really great. They make everything here really easy by planning everything carefully so that our year goes smoothly. The isnt much controversy... I mean we have a nude photo exhibit coming out... For certain sports there is a lot of school spirit. The food is AMAZING (for food prepared for hundreds)!

Describe the students at your school.

Everyone is VERY accepting. It is considered very strange to not accept someone. Most students are very preppy. Everyone really interacts with everyone they want to. The only table in the dining hall which is really a "table" is the sports table, but that is really it. Most students are from right outside Boston. A majority of people are wealthy, considering the cost of Bowdoin, but to me it really isnt very apparent. I couldnt tell you how wealthy most of my friends are.

What are the academics like at your school?

All of my professors know me well. I really love film (obviously). Im not a fan of math, but I really like my professor, so it make the class enjoyable nonetheless. Everyone studies a significant amount, but its not out of control. I went to a REALLY hard high school and Bowdoin seems to be a little bit easier because the professors expect a lot but give you the appropriate amount of time to complete your assignments. Participation in class is very common and expected of you. Students arent overly competitive. Everyone is really interested in helping everyone else do well. I want to be a film major and the department is one professor. Obviously, she is one of the best professors at bowdoin to handle a whole department by herself. The film major is actually a self-designed major, so I will have to write up a paper on why I need a film major when I declare in my sophomore spring semester. The distribution requirements are very easy to fulfill and encourage you to take classes outside your comfort zone.

What are the most popular student activities/groups?

The popular groups are safespace, bmasv, and the newspaper. I am involved with Bowdoin Cable Network. I am a editor there. With BCN, you can choose how much time you want to dedicate so it is really great. We have a weekly news episode and several shows that come out monthly. Everyone leaves there door open. Athletic events are somewhat popular, especially hockey. There are A LOT of speakers and events involving the theater. My closest friends live on my floor. If its 2 am on Tuesday and Im awake I working on a paper or studying for a test. Traditions include polar bearing (skinny dipping at the beach) and middle of the night trips to LL Bean. People party almost every weekend (thursday, friday, and saturday). There are no frats, but rater social houses which are governed by residential life and resemble frats in some aspects, but reduce the amount of hazing. When I dont feel like drinking, me and my friends watch movies, go into to town, or simply go out to parties and dont drink. Off campus we go to movies, shopping in Freeport, skiiing at Sugarloaf or Sunday River...

What is the stereotype of students at your school?

Preppy people that only wear J. Crew and LL Bean.

omar
What is your overall opinion of this school?

The best part about bowdoin is its intimate environment. I think it is the right size, and I do not get much of a reaction f...

What is your overall opinion of this school?

The best part about bowdoin is its intimate environment. I think it is the right size, and I do not get much of a reaction from people when I tell them I go to bowdoin. I spend most of my time in Smith Union. I think Bowdoin is a college town. I do not recall a big controversy on campus recently. I think there is a school pride, which I share. Bowdoin has very extreme winters, which are probably most memorable for me.

Describe the students at your school.

The financial and racial background of bowdoin college is diverse relative to other schools in maine. the school is more suited for people looking for an involved experience where they can move at their own pace.

What are the academics like at your school?

The intimate environment makes bowdoin's academic setting invaluable. We have the ability to remain in close contact with our teachers in and outside of class. The academics are taken seriously bu are not overly competitive. Bowdoin's academics are more geared towards giving students a learning experience, but the college provides excellent resources for finding work in fields that students are interested in.

What are the most popular student activities/groups?

I am a participant in 2 marshall arts clubs and have tried many intramural sports.

What is the stereotype of students at your school?

we drink alot because there is nothing else to do we are underachievers

Jonathan
What is your overall opinion of this school?

The best thing about Bowdoin--and this is probably more a recommendation to small liberal arts colleges in general--is the ac...

What is your overall opinion of this school?

The best thing about Bowdoin--and this is probably more a recommendation to small liberal arts colleges in general--is the access to faculty and the mentoring that happens on campus. This is especially apparent in the sciences, where faculty mentoring can make all the difference. I'm in an intro biology class right now, and not only do both of the professors know my name, one of them has even shared some advice with me during office hours. When I see him in passing around campus, he'll often ask me if I've identified any birds recently (he's an ornithologist) or if I have any questions about ecology in general. These little encounters really make me appreciate the size of Bowdoin and the amount professors invest in their students. At a large university, I don't imagine professors make much time for a freshman biology aspirant. Here, it's unusual for a serious science major to graduate without having spent a significant amount of time working in a professors lab, probably graduating as a published author.

Describe the students at your school.

For the first few weeks of school, I couldn't get over how kind people were. I didn't meet my first asshole until a month or two had passed. Coming from a private school where athletes were generally written off as jerks, I was thrilled to find out that many of my friends were varsity high school athletes or even competing on the college's teams. That being said, there is definitely a rift in the student body between athletes and non-athletes. Since athletes can't drink on Fridays or Saturdays, they usually party on Sunday and Monday night, when everyone else is studying. Since a lot of the social life is centered around weekend events, which sport events prevent athletes from attending, athletes tend to do the majority of their socializing with each other. Generally, students are very engaged in what goes on around campus. If anything, there are too many student organizations for the size of the school, and people have trouble recruiting enough support for that reason, but that's hardly a criticism. Being relegated to Maine, political activism is fairly limited, but the Young Democrats have still managed to raise a lot of disucssion and awareness about the presidential campaign. Compared to my high school, which was perhaps suprisingly diverse for a private school, Bowdoin is not so diverse. Black students here definitely tend to themselves, but other minority groups seem better integrated. I haven't yet figured out why the black students aren't more connected, because it seems like relationships between black and non-black students are common. When the weekend comes around, however, people fall back into their respective groups.

Here's your chance: Say anything about your college!

Come to Bowdoin. A big university with rich graduate programs is the place for graduate school, not for the student who wants to make an impact on his institution and feel at home on his campus. Bowdoin is an environment well suited for learning from peers and professors, and for having a ridiculously fun ride at the same time.

Is the stereotype of students at your school accurate?

Partly. Coming from a prep school myself, Bowdoin seems less preppy to than high school. At the same time, there are a lot of private school kids here, but I think that is probably more a phenomena of highly selective colleges everywhere than something specifc to Bowdoin. As for alcohol, Bowdoin students do drink a lot, and some of us even pride ourselves on our capacities. That said, some major campus organizations and scenes don't involve any drinking. The best example is probably the outing club, which includes a huge portion of the campus, but doesn't condone (or even allow) drinking on any events. No one has a problem with this either because the culture of the outing club is pretty alcohol free in the first place.

What are the academics like at your school?

In general, academics at Bowdoin are superb. Like I already mentioned, Professors are very interested in reaching out to students who show interest. If you show up to class prepared every day, ask intelligent questions, and visit during office hours, you're bound do become friends with the professor of the class. One complaint I would make, however, is about pre-major advising. Bowdoin is actually working on revamping its current system, which is a good thing because right now, a pre-major advisor is little more than a signature on your course selection card. I haven't personally suffered much from this because I am pretty organized about selecting classes. I also sought advice from upperclassmen (something else that is pretty easy to do at a small liberal arts school). Someone who might want more guidance, however, might find themselves a little frustrated as course selection roles around each semester. In terms of academic culture on campus, there is definitely a spectrum. You can't survive at Bowdoin without putting in a significant number of studying hours each day, but you can definitely pull of C's and B's without too much effort. A's are notoriously hard to come by. I'll finish this (lengthy) response by saying that in general, I think Bowdoin students have a very healthy attitude towards studying. Sure, some students live their four college years in the basement of the library, but most students end up dividing their time between a few extracurriculars and their studies. As a member of the outing club and frisbee, I try to be as efficient with my studying as possible to be able to compete in weekend tournaments and participate in and lead outing club trips as frequently as possible.

What are the most popular student activities/groups?

You can realistically party three nights a week: Thursday through Saturday. A lot of freshmen do this, and a significant number of students drink heavily through all three years (I could be a bit biased coming from the frisbee team, which, along with men's rugby, probably drink more than anyone else on campus). That said, every night has "chem free" options like movies, swing dancing, poetry and music events, etc. Last weekend I went out on Thursday night with the Frisbee team, playing drinking games in one of the college houses until 11pm when we migrated to the pub to hear The Mathematicians play. They have a huge following among the frisbee team, so the concert was a blast. Friday morning I went to class, and around 1 oclock I left with 3 friends to go ice-climbing on Mt. Washington. We stayed in the Harvard Mountaineering Club Cabin between Tuckermans and Huntingtons Ravine. When we came home on Saturday, I went out again to another social house party, where drinking games and dancing were the main events. I finished that night sleeping at my girlfiend's room.

What is the stereotype of students at your school?

Bowdoin is often cast as a school full of prep school graduates and boozing athletes.

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