Published May 05, 2021 by Bowdoin News

Common Good Project Teams to Continue Bowdoin’s Commitment, Tackle Opportunities Year-Round

The Joseph McKeen Center for the Common Good is discontinuing its annual Common Good Day (CGD) and has announced plans for a new program that will help bring the intention behind CGD to the next level.
McKeen Center exterior

Beginning this fall, a new program called Common Good Project Teams (CGPT) will continue where CGD left off, providing community partners with volunteers to help tackle projects that aren't easily addressed amid their day-to-day operations and limited resources. 

Instead of a single day in the fall, the McKeen Center will be working with its partners on a timeframe that is responsive to their organizational needs. 

CGD began in 1998, ten years before the McKeen Center opened its doors. Since then, the Center has made great strides in providing opportunities for students to discover the ways in which their talents, passions, and academic pursuits can be used for the benefit of society through public engagement. 

While CGD has grown to serve more than fifty local organizations on one celebratory day each September, the Center has also developed many other programs to support a wide variety of commitment levels with local nonprofits, schools, and government organizations all year long.

The McKeen Center currently celebrates Bowdoin's commitment to the common good at several junctures throughout the year, including fall and winter volunteer fairs to connect students with opportunities and a spring symposium that spotlights scores of initiatives throughout the College.

“We now understand the McKeen Center's mission in more dynamic terms, designing programs to deepen students' community impact, the relationships they build in the community, and the development of critical self-awareness in our pursuit of the common good,” said McKeen Center Director Sarah Seames.

“In light of this evolution, it makes sense to transition CGD away from its slightly frenetic single-afternoon format to a year-round program that instead will offer more opportunities with greater flexibility for students and local organizations.”

CGPT will continue the work of matching groups of volunteers with particular projects, help with logistics, and offer opportunities for students to reflect on their service.

But now, hosts will be able to choose when their projects are completed, and each volunteer group will receive personalized support from the McKeen Center.

Project proposals will be invited in summer 2021 and the first CGPTs will be sent out in September.