Service News

The McKeen Center's Service Newsletter is regularly updated with information and updates regarding volunteer opportunities, events, educational and professional resources, and other opportunities to participate in community engagement and public service within the Bowdoin community, Greater Brunswick area, and beyond.

 Bowdoin Opportunities

Are You Registered To Vote?
Bowdoin Votes Tabling
Tuesday 9/26 and Friday 9/29
Smith Union

Join Bowdoin Votes volunteers to register to vote and learn more about what's on the ballot! PLEASE NOTE that even if you registered to vote in Brunswick last year, you need to register again because you changed addresses! You can learn much more on the Bowdoin Votes website

Apply to Be an America Reads or America Counts Tutor!
DEADLINE EXTENDED: Apply by Sunday, 10/1

Do you miss elementary school? Are you interested in working with younger students? America Reads and Counts is accepting applications for Fall 2023!  The ARAC program places Bowdoin students eligible for Federal Work Study* in local elementary and middle schools where they are paid as reading or math tutors in one-on-one, small group, or classroom settings. Contact Tom Ancona ( any questions. Be sure to check out the Workday listings for the America Reads and America Counts opportunities!

  • Students can reach out to Financial Aid to see if they are Federal Work Study eligible

Cases For and Against the Establishment of Pine Tree Power
Thursday, 9/21, 4:30 - 5:45 PM
Hubbard 213 - The Pickering Room

There are two Pine Tree Power referendums on the ballot in Maine this November! Dr. Richard Silkman is a Ph.D economist and nationally recognized expert in the regulation of public utilities, the development of competitive energy markets and the development, licensing and operation of power plants, including hydroelectric generating stations. Join Dr. Silkman for a talk and Q&A to learn more about the cases for and against the establishment of Pine Tree Power this fall. Learn more and register on Campus Groups.

Multilingual Mainers Lunchtime Language Reading Program
Flexible Scheduling
Kate Furbish Elementary School

We are looking forward to starting our lunchtime language reading program with PreK-2nd grade students at Kate Furbish Elementary School (1/2 mile from Bowdoin). Please use this form to sign up for one or more 25-minute block reading a picture book in a language other than English to groups of 8-10 children. This program is about exposure to languages other than English; you do not have to be a near-native or native speaker of the language. We will have an orientation session for new volunteers and picture books from your languages arranged in a glass case outside of the cafeteria and can purchase new titles as needed for the school. We will begin visits to the school starting the week of September 18. 

If you are unavailable during these time slots, but interested in being a language mentor for students with home languages other than English, please reach out to Margaret Boyle. Explore more about the program on our website, and look for additional information about orientation to the program and celebrations from our student coordinators as the semester progresses.

U.S. Treasury International Affairs Junior Fellowship Info Session
Tuesday, 9/26, 2023 8:00 PM 

The U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Office of International Affairs is now accepting applications for its 2024-2026 cohort of Junior Fellows. The Junior Fellowship program is a highly selective, fixed two-year program for new college graduates to work shaping international economic policy for the United States. 

To learn more about the Junior Fellowship program from current Junior Fellows, register for this information session! Link to the event on Handshake.

McKeen Center x CXD: Social Impact Dinner
Thursday, 9/28, 6:00 – 7:30 PM
Main Lounge, Moulton Union

 The Common Good beyond Bowdoin—what does it look like in action? The Common Good is everywhere- in all career sectors! Join CXD, the McKeen Center, alums and community professionals for conversations over dinner about how their current and past work has a positive social impact on communities. Registration on Handshake is required as seating is limited. Questions? Contact Meg Springer, Senior Associate Director, CXD.

Sustainable Bowdoin Fair
Friday, 9/29, 1:00 - 3:00 PM
Coe Quad

Connect with Bowdoin clubs, departments, and student groups and local organizations to learn how you can be involved with sustainability initiatives at Bowdoin and beyond! We’ll have bike tune-up information, solar oven cookies, and sustainable giveaways! Learn more on Campus Groups.

Truman Scholarship Drop-in Hours
Friday, 9/29, 10:00 to noon
Thursday, 10/5, 4:00 to 5:00 p.m.
Center for Cocurricular Opportunities (110 Moulton Union)

The Truman scholarship provides $30K towards graduate or professional school plus a whole lot more (e.g., leadership training, funded internships) and is annually awarded to 60 juniors from across the United States (including Bowdoin’s Praise Hall ’20 and Mo Nur ’19). To be eligible, you must be a junior committed to making a difference through a career in public service, possess exceptional leadership potential, and be a US citizen or expecting your citizenship by the date of the award. Since the award includes funding for study after Bowdoin, you must be interested in attending graduate or professional school and have a strong GPA. Although students can only apply in the fall of their junior year, all class years are welcomed to join one of our drop-in hours to learn more. The initial Bowdoin deadline is November 6.

Grief Support Group
Every Other Monday, 10/2 through 12/11
4:30 - 5:30 PM
Banister 204

Join students and staff in a group dedicated to providing a safe, informal environment for anyone experiencing grief and loss in any of its many forms. Snacks will be provided. Please note that this location is up a short flight of stairs; if this is not accessible for you, please contact Sarah Seames, and the group can move to a space on the first floor. You can register here on Campus Groups.

Voter Forum on Pine Tree Power Referendums
Monday, 10/16, 7:00 – 9:00 PM
Kresge Auditorium

 This forum will provide voters with a debate between advocates and opponents of the Pine Tree Power Referendum, to be voted on by Mainers in November 2023. The Pine Tree Power Initiative asks whether the voters support the creation of a non-profit electricity transmission and distribution utility to replace the privately owned for-profit Central Maine Power and Versant. Also to be voted on is a related referendum (Question #1) that affects the financing of Pine Tree Power. An advocate and an opponent of Pine Tree Power will appear at the forum and answer questions from the moderators, Tux Turkel (formerly of The Portland Press Herald) and Lori Valigra (Bangor Daily News), about the referendum proposal. Audience members will also be allowed to question the panelists. The goal of the forum is to provide voters with detailed information about the referendum issues. Learn more and register here.

Join the Solution Exhibition Organization Team!

Are you interested in social entrepreneurship and social innovation? Would you like to learn more about different organizations that are solving social and environmental issues around the world? Would like to inspire the Bowdoin Community to take action for a more inclusive and greener future? If so, this might be for you! The Solutions Exhibition is an event initiated by Snowball Effect, a non-profit with the mission to spread impact proven and replicable initiatives around the world. It is an immersive event where participants discover impact-proven and replicable initiatives from all over the world. Learn more about The Solutions Exhibition and how to get involved here at Bowdoin at this link, and apply now to help organize and facilitate a Solution Exhibition at Bowdoin! 

Community Opportunities

Midcoast Literacy: Elder Memoir Volunteers Needed
Volunteer Training Provided On-Campus September 24 and 30

Work with a local senior citizen in the Brunswick-Topsham area to help them create a personal legacy document of their life experiences. Volunteers meet in-person with a senior once-a-week for 8 weeks to help them recall memories, and assist with writing and formatting the document in digital format. You can help people in our community create a lasting memoir to share with their families. Partnerships start this fall/winter: specific volunteer days/hours are flexible. Sign-up now; volunteer training will be provided on-campus September 24 and 30. For more information, e-mail

Tedford Housing Seeking Volunteers
Ongoing, Flexible

On a weekly basis, Tedford Housing volunteers engage with children living in the family shelter of Tedford Housing. We hope to inspire creativity, build self-confidence, and cultivate relationships with the children through intentional arts and crafts activities and games. Reach out to Aden Ho to learn more.

Midcoast Literacy: Volunteer Conversation Partners Needed
October 18, 3:45 - 5:00 PM
Brunswick Welcome Center

Volunteer as an English conversation partner at Midcoast Literacy’s monthly Conversation Café program at the Brunswick Welcome Center. Volunteers are paired with recent immigrants to help them practice short, casual conversations in English. Volunteer for one date or more – no long-term commitment. To join our list of volunteers, e-mail


Volunteer Training: Resources for Young Children
Sunday, 10/1, 1:00 – 2:15 PM
Augusta Multicultural Center (70 State St., Augusta)

As part of Capital New Mainers Project’s ongoing volunteer training program, we are hosting "Resources for Young Children" with Melinda Corey of Help Me Grow Maine. Melinda will join us in person to help us all learn more about the wide variety of resources available to refugee families with young children. As always, volunteers will have an opportunity to meet other FMT members, ask questions, and offer each other support and suggestions. New volunteers are welcome! Contact Chris at to learn more and RSVP.

Habitat for Humanity 7 Rivers Maine ReStore

The ReStore is a retail outlet that accepts and sells to the public donations of building supplies, furniture, appliances, and fixtures. Proceeds from the ReStore support our affordable housing programs. In addition to selling affordable home improvement products to the public, the resale of unwanted building materials, appliances, furniture, and other items prevents tons of waste from ending up in landfills each year.

The ReStore runs on volunteers and we need your help! If you love prowling the aisles at the hardware store, enjoy fixing things, or just want to help recycle building materials while supporting Habitat’s housing programs, consider joining the ReStore team. Volunteers help in all areas of the ReStore with sales, displays, and processing donations. Volunteer once a week or once a month! Open Tues - Sat, 10:00am - 5:00 pm. Click here to apply or contact Debbie at 207-504-9334 or

Seeding Community: A 3-Part Discussion Project
9/28, 10/5, and 10/12, 5:30 - 7:00 PM
Curtis Memorial Library

As part of Harvest Week 2023, Mid Coast Hunger Prevention Program is offering a FREE 3-part community discussion series in partnership with the Maine Humanities Council. Participants will explore the deep interconnections between community, our food system, and food security through the lens of The Seedkeeper by Diane Wilson. Selected texts are provided at no cost. Advance registration is required; learn more and sign up here.

Sacred Ground: A Film-Based Dialogue Series on Race
Ongoing as of September 11

The Sacred Ground program offers discussion groups led by trained facilitators in order to make this conversation safe and more impactful. Because the program lasts for eleven sessions, the groups are able to form deep connections that allow people to be comfortable exploring these difficult concepts. Groups consists of 6-9 participants and two trained facilitators and meet every three weeks at St. Paul's Episcopal Church, though the curriculum is not tied to any specific faith or religion. Learn more and register here.

Fun After School With Jewish Kids
Beth Israel Congregation (12 minutes from campus)
Thursday afternoons, times flexible

Our local synagogue is seeking Bowdoin students to work with youth ages 5-12 in their weekly religious school. Teaching Assistants will facilitate short activities of their choosing (eg team-building exercises, group singing, arts and crafts), in collaboration with a great team of educators.  This is a fun way to support identity development among a minority religious group in our area. To chat about possibilities for the fall contact Rabbi Lisa Vinikoor at

Please see Service News newsletter for the most up-to-date opportunities! Emailed weekly. 

Email Avery Friend to set up individual or group meetings with any of the McKeen Center staff to learn more about ongoing events and programs, seek resources, discuss ideas, and have questions answered. Please also email Avery with any items that you would like to see included in Service News.