Fundraising and Student Group Funding

Students and student groups, including athletic teams, are not permitted to solicit alumni for monetary support. The College benefits greatly from the ongoing generosity of Bowdoin alumni, families, and friends, who provide significant monetary support for student-related programs and services on an annual basis. The Office of Development and Alumni Relations coordinates all fund-raising efforts on behalf of the College.

The use of the words “Bowdoin” or “Bowdoin College,” whether in whole or as an abbreviation, or using the name of a chartered Bowdoin organization, to promote or request fundraising activity is prohibited.

Additionally, students are not permitted to use or post to social media channels associated with Bowdoin or Bowdoin organizations to promote, request, or support fundraising efforts. Similarly, Bowdoin cannot use official channels or College resources (such as email) to advertise, promote, request, or support personal fundraising efforts through crowdfunding sites like GoFundMe, Indiegogo, or the like. 

This policy does not prohibit a student from receiving occasional financial support from their family or other outside source for specific student activities and organizations and special initiatives (such as a spring training trips or travel to conferences).

Limited Permission

In limited circumstances, student groups may request in writing permission to fundraise provided that the proceeds go to a charitable organization not associated with the College. If approved, the student group will be given written permission of the Director of Athletics or the Director of Student Activities and the David Saul Smith Union. In such circumstances, students may only solicit other students and not alumni, community members, or parents. Efforts cannot take place during trustee meetings, Homecoming, Family Weekend, or Graduation weekends. Students are not permitted to ask for donations from Brunswick area businesses.

Items normally sold in the bookstore may not be offered for sale by students or student groups without prior permission from the Bookstore Manager. Questions should be addressed to the Director of Student Activities and the David Saul Smith Union.

Students and student groups with limited permission to fundraise on behalf of charitable organizations are not permitted to use GoFundMe, Crowdfunding, CashApp, Zelle, Facebook, Venmo, or similar companies. Some of these platforms, such as Venmo, prohibit colleges and universities from having accounts. Additionally, if money is collected through one of these platforms, but is not donated, Bowdoin is unable to assist anyone who gave to recover their donation.

Supplemental and Emergency Funding

Generous contributions from alumni, parents and friends of the College allow the Office of the Dean of Students to offer limited financial support to students during the academic year. Funding can be requested for emergencies, special programs, test prep, supplies, travel and unanticipated events. These funds do not have to be repaid but the College hopes that one day when a beneficiary of this support is in a position to pay this forward, they will.

Please visit https://www.bowdoin.edu/dean-of-students/resources/emergency-funding/index.html for more information and instructions.

Institutional Funding for Student Groups

All recognized student groups are eligible to receive funding through the Student Activities Funding Committee (SAFC) and agree, by virtue of their status as chartered organizations, to comply with all College policies including fund-raising restrictions. Student organizations are prohibited from accepting financial donations from outside organizations. Members of athletic teams, including club sports, are also subject to these restrictions.

For more information contact: Nate Hintze, Director of Student Activities and the David Saul Smith Union

Student Grant Seeking 

The College recognizes that an individual student or group of students may wish to seek external grant funding.  Bowdoin maintains excellent relationships with funders in the foundation community, and to a more limited extent, among corporations with philanthropic interests.  Those relationships are the responsibility of the Director of Corporate and Foundation Relations and any outreach must be preapproved by the Director or by the Senior Vice President for Development and Alumni Relations. More information here.