“His kind of omnipresence within the Bowdoin community was the other offer of the college for the four years of Bowdoin and beyond.”
When I first arrived at Bowdoin to start my college education, I was warmly greeted with William DeWitt Hyde's Offer of the College. I also met President Mills on that day—what an honor to shake hands with the president of the college! Over the course of my tenure at Bowdoin, I came to know Barry well beyond his administrative role. His kind of omnipresence within the Bowdoin community was the other offer of the college for the four years of Bowdoin and beyond.
While at Bowdoin, I especially found comfort in seeing Barry at track meets and knowing that I could engage in honest conversation with him about any matters relating to the college. He quickly became an integral part of my support system in challenging times, offering valuable advice to help me make decisions about my education, career, and life in general. I distinctly remember one such situation in my senior year when I was at a crossroads, struggling with a post-college decision. As was usually the case, Barry was just an email away—he invited me to his residence, where he and Karen spent a weekend afternoon helping me to carefully think through my options and make a decision. Although Bowdoin seemed to be in the middle of nowhere when I first arrived there from Ohio, I felt at home and very well supported on campus, and Barry Mills was a big part of why I felt that way.
Barry’s support extended beyond Bowdoin. He has been generous with his time when I needed to chat about the complexities of life after college. He once even helped me land a job by making connections for me. Through Barry, I am able to feel the support and nurturing of Bowdoin wherever I am.
It saddens me that Barry's tenure at Bowdoin is coming to an end, because future Polar Bears will miss the opportunity to know a truly caring, generous, and inspiring leader and friend. I find it difficult to imagine Bowdoin without Barry, because he was such a big part of my experience and, even now, my interactions with him further strengthen my affinity with the College. Yet, I remain inspired by the depth of the legacy that President Mills leaves behind him. He leaves a legacy of inclusiveness—ensuring that the College remains a safe space to discuss all sorts of matters that are important to its diverse student body and that the College is able to attract many bright and deserving students for whom the loan elimination policy now makes Bowdoin a possibility. Moreover, Barry leaves behind a legacy that is a fitting continuation of William DeWitt Hyde's original Offer of the College, and I am grateful for Barry's support, mentorship, and friendship which, over the years, has served as my key to the world's library.
Thank you for everything, Barry.
—Joseph Adu ’07
Senior Manager, Technical Support Services, Care.com