Location: Bowdoin / Sustainability / Activity / 2012 / 50 Sustainable Things

50 Sustainable Things To Do Before You Graduate

Story posted August 30, 2012

Welcome Bowdoin Class of 2016! Even though Orientation keeps first years in a constant rush of meetings and presentations and special luncheons, believe it or not, soon enough, things slow down and free time enters into the student vocabulary. Therefore, Bowdoin Student Government and Residential Life created the “50 Things To Do Before You Graduate” list. This well-known list includes Bowdoin staples, such as eating at a professor’s house and doing some late-night snacking at the Brunswick Diner. But you probably didn’t know that there’s also a “50 Sustainable Things To Do Before You Graduate” list. That’s right. There are now 100 things to do (or at least attempt) at Bowdoin before you collect your diploma.

Cory Elowe ’11 developed the list as a senior project two years ago as an effort to introduce students to a wide array of activities that involve the environment. “I realized that just during my four years at Bowdoin there was an incredible expansion in the amount of opportunities in the Brunswick area…that encouraged sustainable exploration of the community,” Elowe said. In order to develop the list and spread the word on his favorite activities, Elowe consulted with friends and faculty. “When I sat down to make the list, I had a number of activities in mind, but I was also excited to reach out to other people so that I could pass on a more comprehensive and diverse list.”

Elowe’s list contains some of the old “50 Things” and many new items. You may recognize some of the old favorite activities—hiking at Morse Mountain or at the Coastal Studies Center, for example. But Elowe added some twists to his list as well. Number 13 on the list suggests polar bearing, but in late October when the bioluminescent phytoplankton bloom.

Other items on the list include dining trayless for a week, making recycled costumes and marching in Brunswick’s Halloween parade, volunteering at the Bowdoin Organic Garden, and weatherizing homes with Habitat for Humanity (contact Jane Carpenter at jfcarpen, president of Bowdoin Habitat for Humanity, for more info on this). Elowe hopes that first years and upperclassmen alike will hang up both lists and start marking off completed items.

It may be difficult to accomplish all fifty things, but the list’s real goal is to inspire more Bowdoin students to connect with the greater Brunswick community, the Maine environment, and fellow Bowdoin students. As for Elowe himself? “I've completed 36 of the activities on the list and have one incomplete,” he said. “I've picked apples, but need to learn how to bake an apple pie.”

The list will be passed out during Greenstock on Saturday, September 8th on the Main Quad. Also, you can click here for an electronic copy.

"My hope was that when first-years began at Bowdoin they would tape both the original and the new '50 things' lists to their walls...So the next time they found the time they could look at both lists and challenge themselves to exploring something new that would help them make the most of their time in the Brunswick area." -Cory Elowe '11