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A daily look at Bowdoin and the world
Updated: 12 min 38 sec ago

Joan Benoit Samuelson ’79: Tips for Runners

Fri, 08/01/2014 - 13:03

Some 6,000 runners will be lining up early tomorrow morning to take part in the 17th running of Joan Benoit Samuelson ’79′s TD Beach to Beacon 10K Road Race in Cape Elizabeth, Maine. Each year the race attracts elite runners from across the globe, as well as recreational runners and first-time racers, too. Joanie shares pearls of Olympic gold-winning wisdom for those taking their first steps across a starting line, including the existential: “Run your own race; don’t run anyone else’s race.”

Read how Joanie’s commitment to sustainability has informed the race she founded.

Categories: Bowdoin

The Ascent of Instagram (Fortune)

Fri, 08/01/2014 - 13:02
One of among 500+ photos on @bowdoincollege's Instagram feed

One of among 500+ photos on @bowdoincollege‘s Instagram feed


It’s a social media platform that seems to engage and addict people more than many others. By incorporating a few filters and an old-timey square frame, Instagram has turned average web users into photographers. Recently, these insta-photographers have been showing their dedication through InstaMeets — large gatherings of instagrammers who come together to meet and photograph one another in locations like London, New York and South Africa — mixing digital media with some “old-school socializing,” if you will.

So how did Instagram become so popular? How does parent company Facebook play into how Instagram is run? And what plans does the free application have to increase its profits?  Learn more from Fortune

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Bowdoin Environmental Fellows Work for a Healthier Maine

Fri, 08/01/2014 - 13:01

This summer, 11 Bowdoin students with environmental fellowships are working in Maine and contributing, in a range of ways, to protecting our natural resources. One is interning for a consulting and engineering firm; another is creating an economic impact study of bicycling in Maine. Others are working for town planning offices, environmental advocacy groups and land trusts.

The students all have fellowships from Bowdoin’s Community Matters in Maine environmental program. Two grants in this program — the Psi Upsilon and the Logan Environmental fellowships — focus on the environment; the other grants provide students with opportunities to work on civic or social issues. With these donor-backed fellowships, students can explore potential careers and help nonprofits that might not have the budgets to pay them a wage.

This video features three Psi Upsilon fellows and two Maine organizations: Madeline Davis ’16 and Simon Pritchard ’16 at Portland’s Environmental Health Strategy Center, and Wilder Nicholson ’16 at the Brunswick-Topsham Land Trust.

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Here Are The Craziest Ice Cream Flavors to Try in Maine This Summer (BDN)

Fri, 08/01/2014 - 13:00

Capture d’écran 2014-07-23 à 4.18.14 PMThis summer, Maine ice cream makers seem to be bent on proving that there’s nothing you can’t mix with ice cream. Lobster, cayenne, cilantro, and avocado are among the most unexpected ingredients in these five crazy flavors available in shops from Bar Harbor to Kennebunkport, including Brunswick favorite Gelato Fiasco. Which ones would you try?

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Joan Benoit Samuelson ’79: Ever Greening the Beach to Beacon

Thu, 07/31/2014 - 13:43

Marathon matriarch and Trustee Joan Benoit Samuelson ’79 is all about goals. With a track record that includes the gold medal in the 1984 Summer Olympics in Los Angeles, not one but two Boston Marathon wins, and one in the Chicago Marathon, it’s clear Joanie, as she’s known to friends and admirers the world over, is a force of nature.

Saturday, August 2, 2014, brings the TD Beach to Beacon 10K Road Race, which she founded, back to her hometown, Cape Elizabeth, Maine. The race, attracting some 6,000 runners in its 17th year, becomes increasingly greener each year.

The greening of the B2B includes efforts ranging from composting and recycling (diverting an estimated 67% of the event’s waste from the landfill), to the elimination of all pre-race printed marketing materials, and a commitment to providing locally produced food and beverages to runners. “I believe that conservation is to environment what prevention is to health,” says Benoit Samuelson. “The two are really inextricably linked.”

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The Search for Dark Matter Continues (Scientific American)

Thu, 07/31/2014 - 13:42

outer space, galaxy, universe, Dark matter: invisible and untouchable, yet a prominent gravitational force tugging on the Universe’s normal matter. With recent funding, three projects now move forward to attempt to identify the particles behind these gravitational forces. They differ in the types of detectors they will use to search for particles that currently only exist in theory (WIMPs and axions). These labs are confident that they will be able to either detect particles or reject their hypothesis within this next stage of research.

“In science the ruling out is as important as discovery,” says Stanford University physicist Blas Cabrera, “but of course discovery is always more fun.”

Cabrera, a spokesperson for the CDMS collaboration, also presented a Kibbe lecture at Bowdoin this past spring.

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Summer Harvest: Bowdoin Garden Crew Brings New Plot to Life

Thu, 07/31/2014 - 13:42

The new garden on Harpswell Road is producing a bounty of vegetables and flowers this year under the direction of Bowdoin Organic Garden manager Sara Cawthon and her crew. Earlier in the summer, the radishes were the size of plums, and were so abundant that the dining hall chefs had to be inventive in how they used them.

In this video, garden interns Elina Zhang ’16 and Tara Palnitkar ’16 give a brief tour of the plot, showing off the basil, lettuce, watermelon and other crops that the carefully amended and tended soil is producing. The 1/3-acre garden joins the Bowdoin gardens out on Pleasant Street and South Street for a total of 1.5 acres.

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People Who Like Instant Coffee Better Than the Good Kind (Time)

Thu, 07/31/2014 - 13:39

CoffeeDo not mess with a person’s coffee — especially before they’ve had their first morning cup. Coffee drinkers, a formidable lot, generally are creatures of habit, with biases about their brew. That said, would you believe that half the world prefers clumpy instant?

I mean, gag me with a coffee stirrer.

Time magazine looks at this phenomena in its aptly headlined article, “These Maps Show Why Half the World Prefers Kind of Gross Coffee.

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Interning at Maine’s Iconic Store — In Japan

Wed, 07/30/2014 - 13:04

STASIW_LLBEAN_062514-5Greg Stasiw ’15 has a paid internship this summer with L.L.Bean, working for its inventory team. This seems a normal enough job for a college student in Maine — until you learn that he’s based in Tokyo.

L.L. Bean, which has had its headquarters in Freeport, Maine, for 102 years, expanded into Japan in 1992 and now has 19 stores throughout the country. This is the first summer the outdoor retailer has hired a Bowdoin intern to work in one of its Japanese branches. Read the full story.

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Save the Family Dinner (The Atlantic)

Wed, 07/30/2014 - 13:03

smart phone dinnerIncreasingly, people are eating alone. And not just the twenty-somethings you’re picturing eating takeout while they binge-watch Netflix. The majority of Americans living with a family member report fewer mealtimes together today than when they were growing up. Not to mention that the average American eats one in every five meals in his or her car.

So what do we lose when we forgo eating with others? Children who eat separately from their parents are more likely to be obese, whereas those who eat with their parents are healthier and show better performance in school. We lose the sense of community that comes from taking time to put away phones and work worries and catch up with one another over food.

Read more from The Atlantic on how to “eat better, not just from a nutritional perspective, but from a psychological one as well.”

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The Top 10 Things You Never Knew About the Bicycle (Slate)

Wed, 07/30/2014 - 13:02

source: Slate

The invention and progression of what we recognize as the modern bicycle is not as cloudy as historians once thought. The history of bicycle technology has been “long neglected,” but now Tony Hadland and Hans-Erhard Lessing have compiled much information into their recently published Bicycle Design: An Illustrated History.

Take a look at Slate’s visual list of the top 10 innovations to 19th century bicycles, that took them from a contraption propelled by the feet on the ground t0 one that could generate the energy to light an electric bulb.

Categories: Bowdoin

Cash Points, Car Parks and Gardens, Oh My! (Mental Floss)

Wed, 07/30/2014 - 13:00

Confused book128If you’re an American who’s ever been told to put your rubbish in the bin, you were probably mildly bemused. And you were probably talking to someone British, who wanted you to toss your trash in the garbage can.

The language might still be called English, but there are a number of surprising discrepancies that occur when you cross the pond. For example, on this side of the pond, we would refer to the things in the headline above as ATMs, garages and backyards.

Categories: Bowdoin

Frogpocalypse: Bowdoin’s Wheelwright on How Mysterious Frog Die-off Raises Warning (NBC News)

Tue, 07/29/2014 - 13:30

Mysterious Frog Die-Off Raises Warning from Bowdoin College on Vimeo.

Nat Wheelwright, Bowdoin’s Anne T. and Robert M. Bass Professor of Natural Sciences, and chair of the Biology Department, documents what “was like a nuclear detonation” in his backyard pond when more than 200,000 wood frog tadpoles died within a day. As Wheelwright tells NBC News, and as he and his collaborators at the University of Tennessee reported in a study published by Herpetological Review, the culprit is likely an insidious type of virus.

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Mellon Mays Undergraduate Fellowship Winners Present Their Research

Tue, 07/29/2014 - 13:29

The 2014 MMUF Fellows along with MMUF alumni Emily Coin ’14 and Tiffany Ebrahim

Last week in Druckenmiller Hall, this year’s ten Mellon Mays Undergraduate Fellowship (MMUF) researchers presented five weeks worth of research to professors, faculty advisors, and fellow students at the 2014 Mellon Mays Undergraduate Summer Research Colloquium. The MMUF is named for Benjamin E. Mays, former president of Morehouse College in Atlanta, Georgia, and mentor to Martin Luther King, Jr. The Fellowship supports students from underrepresented minority groups in becoming scholars, with the aim of increasing the number of these students who pursue PhDs, as well as encouraging diversity in academia. This summer, the MMUF brought together students and faculty mentors from Bowdoin College and from the University of  the Witwatersrand in South Africa. Read more about the fellows.

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America’s Favorite Place Is in Maine, Naturally (ABC News)

Tue, 07/29/2014 - 13:29
The North and South Bubble Mountains behind Jordan Pond in Acadia National Park

The North and South Bubble Mountains behind Jordan Pond in Acadia National Park













The results are in, and America’s favorite place is: Acadia National Park. Good Morning America‘s search for “your favorite place in America” brought in an “overwhelming” number of responses, which rated Acadia higher than places such as Lake Tahoe and the Chicago waterfront. The beauty of Mount Desert Island’s Cadillac Mountain, Bass Harbor Head lighthouse, and more attract — and apparently impress — hordes of visitors each year, no doubt contributing to Maine’s reputation as “Vacationland.”

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10 Things to Change About Your Resume Right Now (Mashable)

Tue, 07/29/2014 - 13:27

Resume256If your email ends in and you’re not “applying for a job as a historian on 1999,” it’s time to upgrade, advises HubSpot chief marketing officer Mike Volpe ’97. As part of Mashable’s new business series, Volpe highlights ten mistakes that will guarantee you not to get a second look for a position in marketing — let alone an interview. More tips: take that selfie off your LinkedIn profile, and use one social media account well rather than using multiple accounts poorly.

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Roger Angell H’06 Awarded Baseball Hall of Fame Honor (

Mon, 07/28/2014 - 13:38
Roger Angell, the honorand, with Professor of English Peter Coviello, in 2006.

The honorand Roger Angell, with Professor of English Peter Coviello, in 2006.

Called a “graceful master of prose” and “baseball’s foremost essayist,” Roger Angell, a 2006 honorary degree recipient, was awarded the Baseball Hall of Fame’s J.G. Taylor Spink Award Saturday at Doubleday Field.

“It’s a surprise to me, because I was not a member of the [Baseball Writers' Association of America], and all the prior Spink Award-winners have been members,” said Angell, who has been writing about baseball since 1962. “I’m the guy who would attend games year after year and stay late to talk to players. And then I’d get in a cab and go home, while all the other writers had to work against deadline. It was not a very popular position. … I wrote later and longer, and that’s pretty tough to forgive. But they’ve forgiven me, and here I am. I’m delighted.” Read more about Angell and the award, and see the video of Angell’s acceptance speech on

With five decades at The New Yorker — and counting — Angell nurtured such writers as Garrison Keillor, William Trevor and John Updike.

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Maine Boasts A Higher Percentage of Female Farmers (Bangor Daily News)

Mon, 07/28/2014 - 13:37

farmerThere’s a new reason to be proud of Maine produce: the Bangor Daily News reports that the percentage of female farm operators in Maine is more than double the national average — 30 percent compared to 14 percent nationwide. Not only that, but farming in Maine (and in New England as a whole) is growing more rapidly than in other areas of the country.

In New England, “it wasn’t uncommon for farmland to be passed down through the women,” explains Gary Keough, the state statistician for the USDA. It’s hard to tell, though, whether the recent increase means that more women are becoming interested in farming or are simply interested in becoming their farm’s chief operator. 

Categories: Bowdoin

Townies: Students Work for Brunswick, Topsham

Mon, 07/28/2014 - 13:36

Libby Szuflita ’15 and Violet Ranson ’16 are mapping parts of Topsham and Brunswick this summer to help local administrators make land-use decisions that will improve town life and reconcile the sometimes conflicting needs of residents, businesses and wildlife.<

The students — who are both majoring in environmental studies and sociology — are working in the towns’ planning departments this summer. (Ranson is working for Brunswick; Szuflita for Topsham.) Both have Psi Upsilon Sustainability/Environmental Justice Fellowships from Bowdoin’s Environmental Studies program to fund their summertime jobs. The competitive grants are awarded every summer to students who intern at Maine environmental organizations, including town planning offices. Because these fellowships often require competence with GPS and GIS, Environmental Studies Program Manager Eileen Johnson offers a two-day course in mapmaking in early June. Read the full story.

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The Grownup Way to Eat Your Veggies (TIME)

Mon, 07/28/2014 - 13:35

boy and cooked vegetablesIt seems every child has at least one vegetable, usually packed with nutrients, that can induce an onslaught of reactions ranging from complaint to outrage around the dinner table. Maybe it’s the stench (read: brussel sprouts). Maybe it’s the texture (looking at you, dry broccoli). Whether you’re still managing your emotions around this issue or looking for ways to introduce such nutrients into your child’s diet, here are some ways to make those veggies more delicious than ever.

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