Welcome to Bowdoin. We are so excited to welcome you Class of 2025 and incoming transfer students! We will begin adding updates to this page in May.
Before You Arrive
1. Find your Bowdoin username and password.
In May, look for your Bowdoin username and a temporary password sent to the account you provided during the application process. Use this to log in to many of Bowdoin's online tools including email and Blackboard.
2. Important housing and orientation information.
Frequently Asked Questions
A quick reference for some of the most common questions incoming students have.
Arrival day for the Class of 2024 is August 29th.
More information about the arrival day schedule is to come.
For directions and general information, you'll find help Traveling to Campus here. We are monitoring each of the resources on the list to make sure we are knowledgeable about what is no longer an option due to the virus.
Students are not allowed in the dorms before Arrival Day. If you arrive in Brunswick before arrival day you can stay in one of the several accommodation options listed below.
There are multiple hotels, motels, and bed & breakfasts in Brunswick and the mid-coast region. View some of the local accommodations.
Yes. International students will have an opportunity to gather together in some capacity to form connections with each other that will continue throughout their experience at Bowdoin. International students will have this resource regardless if they are physically on campus or not.
Further details and invitations will be sent out later after things become solidified.
The start of Bowdoin Orientation is the evening of August 29th.
We are planning a great and safe program for you! Orientation schedules will be provided to you once more details are solidified.
Three services—United Parcel Service, Federal Express, and the United States Postal Service—are available for shipping belongings to campus. The address you must use is:Student NameBowdoin College###Smith UnionBrunswick, ME 04011
Your exact Smith Union address will be given to you soon. Know that the earliest your package should arrive is August 21st. If it arrives earlier, the mail center will not accept it. All packages arriving after August 21st will be held until students pick them up.
We know you are very excited to bring your belongings to your college dorm room. However, we ask you to please remove one-time use packaging from any items before coming to campus to reduce the amount of waste that the college needs to dispose of.
Living on Campus
Students and staff rave about the food at Bowdoin College! Princeton Review has ranked Bowdoin #1 in the country. In the Princeton Review "Best 361 Colleges" Bowdoin's Dining Service has consistently been ranked #1 or #2 in past years, garnering the top spot in 2004, 2006, 2007, 2010, 2012, 2014, and 2015! Bowdoin's chefs use local ingredients whenever possible and the college tends its own organic garden near campus. Bowdoin also scored an 'A' on our sustainability practices based on environmental choices.
Students may eat in the Moulton Union and Thorne Dining Halls. First-Year students are required to have a full Meal Plan, providing 19 meals per week in addition to "Polar Points." Students also may use "Polar Points" at Jack Magee's grill, which provides short-order food. Bowdoin's Cafe and on-campus Convenience Store are two other venues where food, beverages, and necessities can be purchased. In downtown Brunswick there are a variety of reasonably-priced, quality dining establishments, including Chinese, Indian, Italian, Mexican, Thai, seafood, pizza, and fast food. Some of the tastiest food establishments downtown Brunswick accept Bowdoin OneCard as well!
For other groceries, Hannafords, our local super-market, is a 5-minute walk from campus, and Morning Glory, a natural food market, is a 10 minute walk down Maine Street. You will be able to visit these shops so long as you follow all guidelines around social distancing and public safety outlined in the Student Conduct Contract.
Life at Bowdoin
Within Brunswick, students may shop at Walmart, T.J. Maxx, and Staples. Within a 10 minute walk of campus, there are a variety of boutiques, consignment shops, gear swaps, and thrift shops.
Target, Bed Bath and Beyond, Reny's, among other stores, are in the neighboring town of Topsham, which is a short drive from campus. Topsham is a great place for all of your dorm needs.
For more extensive shopping, Freeport is a 15 minute drive from Bowdoin. Freeport is home to the L.L. Bean Flagship Store and Outlet along with many other outlets such as J. Crew, North Face, Patagonia, and Banana Republic.
The Maine Mall is a 30 minute drive from Bowdoin, located in South Portland.
Also, online shopping is always a great option. Remember, Amazon.com Prime and other online stores offer student memberships.
What you may bring:
- Twin XL size bedding
- Sheets, pillows, pillow cases, blankets, etc.
- All first years will have this size bedding regardless of if your housing location is not a traditional first year brick
- Chargers for all electric products
- Academic materials
- Pencils and pens
- Masks, gloves, and other protective/sanitary needs
- Semi-formal clothing
- Anticipate cold weather in November (think layers)
- Personal medicine
- Toothbrush, toothpaste, hair products, shower products, towel, shower shoes, etc.
- Bathroom tote to bring your toiletries back and forth to the bathroom
- Laundry materials
- Basket/bag and detergent
- Do not bring quarters for laundry, you will use your OneCard to pay for laundry
- Athletic gear
- While first years are permitted to have cars, there will be some guidelines around usage. This will be issued to you soon.
- Room Décor
- Remember, you are here for one semester. Please be sparse. You should have more opportunities next year to lavishly decorate your room
What you might bring, but won’t need:
- Gaming systems
- Extension Cords
- No larger than 4 cubic feet
- You can rent from universitylogistics.com
- Drying rack
- All buildings have a broom in the laundry room or trash room that students can use for their personal room
- Napkins or Paper towels
Remember that you do not need any of these things and will have to move them into your residence hall by yourself if you choose to bring them.
What you should not bring:
- Trash cans or trash bags
- Each room has a trash can
- Trash bags are found in the trash room of each building
- Including fish
Yes! There will be more details released around Bowdoin's expectations, guidelines and vehicular registration soon.
Bowdoin has partnered with Zipcar, North America's largest car-sharing service, to offer a cost-effective and environmentally friendly alternative to the challenges of having a car on campus. A special website allows members of the Bowdoin community and residents of the Town of Brunswick to join the Zipcar program.
Bowdoin also has a student run program called the Yellow Bike Club (YBC) which, for a small fee, provides a key to all "Yellow Bikes" on campus.
Bowdoin has a mailing center where students can send or receive mail and packages. In the future you will receive a letter from the Mail Center on campus with information about your mailing address.
Yes, the college provides a high speed network that is accessible in dorms, public areas and libraries. Wireless access points are available across almost all locations on campus. Each student is assigned an email account. This email account will be provided in your May informational packet. First-Year students should already have accessed their email accounts early in the summer prior to their arrival and check them everyday for valuable and timely information. This is the main way we communicate with students who we then expect to relay that information to parents and guardians as necessary.
If you have information technology questions before Orientation, you can consult Bowdoin's IT website.
Questions about student Health insurance can be directed to Cathy Hayes, the Student Health Insurance Coordinator, at (207) 798-4284. Bowdoin requires all students to be enrolled in a health insurance plan while attending the College. You may either choose to purchase Bowdoin's Student Accident and Sickness Insurance Plan or rely on your own coverage, if comparable. All students will be automatically enrolled in Bowdoin's plan and charged the plan's premium unless you go online to waive coverage. Details of the plan and instructions for waiving will be mailed to students. The deadline for waiving coverage in Bowdoin's Student Accident and Sickness Insurance Plan is TBD.
An optional 'Accident Only' Insurance Policy is also available to varsity athletes who have family health insurance. Please refer to the mailings you receive this summer for this option.
The College is not responsible for the loss of, theft of, or damage to personal property by fire or other causes. Students and families who wish to insure student belongings should consider insurance offered by Gallagher Koster.
There are several hair salons in Brunswick, including Pura Vida, Starz and The Looking Glass as well as the barber shop Kings and Queens on Maine Street. Mainely Hair is in Freeport, just south of Brunswick.
For products, there are local shops on Maine Street in Brunswick, Sally's Beauty Supply in the Topsham Fair Mall, not too far from the school, and several outlet stores in Freeport. Some students purchase beauty supplies online. Some good websites include www.hairsisters.com , a site for ordering hair supplies and hair extensions; and www.carolsdaughter.com has hair and body products.