Student-Led Service Organizations
The Bowdoin Volunteer Corps (BVC) is an umbrella organization for Bowdoin student-led community service programs. The BVC is made up of twenty-eight student-led organizations that address a wide range of community needs. Each group works closely with local agencies, placing Bowdoin students in volunteer positions that meet those needs. Contact the student leaders for more information about how to get involved!
Bowdoin Volunteer Corps Groups
A program that matches Bowdoin students with children with physical and mental disabilities and their siblings to engage them with fun, entertaining activites. Meets weekly for games, snacks, swimming, and other activities. For more information, contact Samuel Burnim '14, Isabelle Franks '14, Taylor Vail ’14, and Ellery Maya-Altshuler ’15.
Bears and Cubs
Matches Bowdoin students with children waiting for a Big Brother or Big Sister. Meets every other Sunday in the gym for afternoon activities. For more information, contact Rachel Henderson ’15 or Josh Benton '15.
Works with local middle school students to develop art and writing skills through an interactive online blog. For more information, contact Nhi Nguyen.
Volunteers work one-on-one as tutors and mentors with ESL students at Coffin Elementary School, Harriet Beecher Stowe School, and Brunswick Junior High School. For more information, contact Emily Quirk '14 and Emily Powers '14.
Bowdoin Artist Activists
Students will collaborate to make public art as a means of raising awareness of social and political issues, sparking discussion, and helping to empower the Bowdoin community to make change in the world. For more information, contact Haley Gewandter '14.
Bowdoin Central Mentoring
Members mentor students in grades K-5 at Bowdoin Central School. For more information, contact Emily Carr '14, Emma Johnson '14, and Clare McLaughlin '15.
Brunswick High School Mentoring
Students work one-on-one as mentors to high school students. For more information, contact Jesse Ortiz '16, John Branch '16, and Teresa Liu '15.
Volunteers receive training in tax preparation and financial resources and provide assistance to low- and middle-income individuals during tax season. For more information, contact Mintra Srimanchanda '16.
Coastal Humane Society
Students volunteer with the Coastal Humane Society in Brunswick. For more information, contact Mariana Guzman Marquez '16 and Madeline Davis '16.
Members provide educational support for prisoners through the U.S. Postal system. For more information, contact Danielle Orchant '14, Kyra Babakian '14, Kiran Pande '15, and Gabi Serrato Marks '15.
College Students for College
Provides support to high school students navigating the process of postsecondary planning. For more information, contact Caroline Blake '14, Lucy Knowlton '16, and Nina Underman '15.
Colleges Against Cancer
Promotes cancer awareness and advocacy on campus and raises funds for the American Cancer Society through the Relay for Life. For more information, contact Laurel Varnell '14 and Ursula Munger '15.
Members mentor students in grades K-5 at Bowdoinham Community School. For more information, contact Will Horne '14, Filipe Camarotti '14, and Michelle Johnson '15.
FFLY (Fostering Female Leadership in Youth)
Bowdoin women serve as mentors at Bath Middle School where they lead lessons and activities, organize field trips, and engage in one-on-one mentoring in order to folster female leadership, confidence, and community for young adolescent women. For more information contact, Michelle Wiener '14, Adrienne Hanson '14, Julia Piper '14, and Casey Stewart '14.
Volunteers deliver unused food from the Dining Service to Mid Coast Hunger Prevention Program. For more information, contact Erica Nangeroni '14 and Taylor Vail '14.
Grassroot Soccer/"Lose the Shoes"
Raises money and awareness for Grassroot Soccer by hosting bake sales, pub nights, STI information and prevention efforts, and the "Lose the Shoes" 3v3 soccer tournament. For more information, contact Louise Johnson '14, Rebecca Stoneman '14, Kiefer Solarte '16, and Sam White '15.
Habitat for Humanity
The Bowdoin College Chapter of Habitat for Humanity partners with Habitat 7 Rivers to sponsor "build days," organize fundraisers, and promote awareness of affordable housing opportunities in Brunswick and the surrounding areas. For more information, contact Chelsea Bruno '14 and Brendan Soane '16.
Harpswell Community Mentoring
Members mentor students at Harpswell Community School through collaborative learning and recreational activity. For more information, contact Tracie Goldsmith '14, Gina Stalica '16, and Andrew Miller-Smith '15.
Volunteers increase chemistry and science awareness and appreciation, providing demonstrations to local students of all ages. For more information, contact Salem Harry '14 and Nathan Ricke '14.
Let's Get Ready
Volunteers help expand college access for motivated, low-income high school students by providing free SAT pregaration and college admission counseling. For more information, contact Emily Quirk '14 and Emily Mitchell '14 or visit the Let's Get Ready website.
Mt. Ararat High School Mentoring
Students work one-on-one as mentors to high school students. For more information, contact Ellie Brennan '14, Gabby Lubin '14, and Amanda Howard '15.
Mt. Ararat Middle School Bike Club
Volunteers teach Mount Ararat Middle School students safe and effective bicycling techniques and promote bicycling for fun and good health by joining weekly bike rides with the students. For more information, contact Adrienne Hanson '14.
Mt. Ararat Middle School Mentoring
Students work one-on-one as mentors to middle school students. For more information, contact Kurt Herzog '13, Daniel Hanley '14, and Shannon Dominguez '15.
Portland Adult Education
Volunteers assist with English literacy and job preparation programs for adults living in the Portland area. For more information, contact Robbie Harrison '14, Lucy Walker '14, and Rachel Sege '14 or visit the website for Portland Adult Education.
Portland Housing Authority Tutoring
Volunteers provide tutoring after school M-Th for low-income students in grades K-12 of mainly immigrant and refugee background. Volunteers commit to work once a week with students at one of Portland Housing Authority's study centers. For more information, contact Caitlin Greenwood '15 and Bridget Kranz '16.
Public Health Volunteers Club
Provides students with an interest in health careers exposure to public health issues in the Greater Brunswick area. For more information, contact Tracie Goldsmith '14, Marcus Karin '14, and DJ Flynn '15.
Red Cross Blood Drives
Students organize, volunteer at the "canteen" and reception desk, and recruit donors for four campus-wide Red Cross blood drives per year. For more information, contact Quincy Koster '15, Maxwell Wolf '15, and Gabi Serrato Marks '15.
Volunteers mentor students at West Bath School through the arts. For more information, contact Halllie Carol '14, Cody Stack '16, and Frannie Gurzenda '16.
Students organize and recruit volunteers for the Special Olympics swim and track meet in the spring. For more information, contact Sarah Freeman '15.
Sunnybrook Village Volunteers
Volunteers spend time with the residents of the Sunnybrook Village retirement and assisted-living community. For more information, contact Caroline Bartlett '14, Zoe Karp '14, and Ellery Maya-Altshuler '15.
Tedford Housing Volunteers
Volunteers help with general shelter needs at both the adult and family shelter (e.g. minor maintenance work, serving dinners) and organize special events (such as birthday/holiday parties and soccer tournaments for children living in the family shelter). For more information, contact Caroline Moore '14.
Volunteer Lawyers Project
Student volunteers work with the Volunteer Lawyers Project in Portland to provide legal options to low-income Maine residents, helping them to navigate the civil justice system. Responsibilities include conducting client intakes over the phone and meeting with the VLP staff to assess callers' legal needs. For more information, contact Diana Lee '14 and Monica Bouyea '14 or visit the Volunteer Lawyers Project website.
Each group in the Bowdoin Volunteer Corps is initiated and led by students. Generally, these leaders have previously been volunteers with the BVC group or community organization. Advised by the McKeen Center for the Common Good, group leaders take part in a leadership retreat at the beginning of the year to explore ways to more effectively run volunteer programs, manage student volunteers, and meet community needs. The BVC McKeen Fellows and McKeen Center staff also meet with organization leaders throughout the year to provide support in their work.
If you're interested in starting your own student-run service group or would like more information on the BVC, please contact the BVC McKeen Fellows Robbie Harrison '14 or Sam Burnim '14.