Overall Rating Silver - expired
Overall Score 57.92
Liaison Keisha Payson
Submission Date Feb. 25, 2016
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.0

Bowdoin College
PA-8: Affordability and Access

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 3.29 / 4.00 Keisha Payson
Sustainability Coordinator
Sustainable Bowdoin
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Does the institution have policies and programs in place to make it accessible and affordable to low-income students?:

A brief description of any policies and programs to minimize the cost of attendance for low-income students:

Bowdoin is
- Need blind, and
- Meets 100% of the student’s demonstrated financial need, and
- Our financial aid packages do not include loans.

A brief description of any programs to equip the institution’s faculty and staff to better serve students from low-income backgrounds:

The Roberts Fund, administered through the Office of Student Fellowships and Research, offers monthly "mini grants" to students with low-income backgrounds (students on financial aid). These funds range between $200 and $800 and are intended for students interested in engaging in more in-depth research with their advisers/professors.

A brief description of any programs to prepare students from low-income backgrounds for higher education:

The Upward Bound program at Bowdoin College is designed to help low income Maine high school students apply for and be successful in higher education. Through Upward Bound the College partners with 11 target high schools in Maine serving 107 low income and first generation college bound students. The program provides free ongoing academic year outreach and a free fully residential 6-week summer academic experience. The Financial Aid office partners with 4 area high schools to offer individual and group sessions to at-risk students/families. The Bowdoin Admissions Office invites students from under-served areas to campus to build aspirations. Brunswick HS brings at risk 10th graders to campus for sessions (admission, aid, academic). We also host METCO students and Codman HS students from Boston.

A brief description of the institution's scholarships for low-income students:

For all students we meet their financial need with a small work award ($1,900) and the remainder in grant assistance. We also allow students to use outside awards to reduce their summer ($2,300) and school year ($1,900) work expectations. In some cases, we can even let students use their outside awards to reduce their parent contribution.

The Office of Special Academic Programs administers between 8 and 15 Chamberlain Scholarships annually for students of low income and diverse background. These full scholarships also carry with them two $1,500 stipends to encourage unpaid summer internships, travel abroad, and/or research. Chamberlain scholars receive a faculty mentor through the duration of their college tenure.

A brief description of any programs to guide parents of low-income students through the higher education experience:

Bowdoin's Financial Aid officers speak at 15-20 area High School Financial Aid Nights each year. Aid sessions are offered on campus to all admitted students and parents. Individual telephone counseling on how to afford college occurs throughout the year.

A brief description of any targeted outreach to recruit students from low-income backgrounds:

Explorer Weekend (2) – Bowdoin invites prospective students to campus to who would otherwise not be able to visit the campus and provides them with a full program of events to experience college life.

Bowdoin Experience – Bowdoin invites admitted students who otherwise would not be able to visit the College to experience Bowdoin campus life before making their final college choice.

Maine Day - Admission and Financial aid invite students and their parents to visit the College and experience the life of a college student. Special presentations and programs are available.

A brief description of other admissions policies or programs to make the institution accessible and affordable to low-income students:

Locally we participate in as many as 25 financial aid presentations for students and parents. Generally, these occur at local high schools and involve students and parents. While many of these students will not attend Bowdoin, the effort helps Maine students to achieve their college aspirations.

A brief description of other financial aid policies or programs to make the institution accessible and affordable to low-income students:

The Financial Aid Office offers no-interest short term loans to low income students to manage cash flow and for emergencies. Aid can be reviewed each semester if family financial circumstances (medical, unemployment , etc.) change mid-year. Over $400,000 in grant aid is available each year to Bowdoin graduates attending professional schools or graduate programs. Aid travels with the student who studies overseas, so all have access to this experience.

A brief description of other policies and programs to make the institution accessible and affordable to low-income students not covered above:

Bowdoin has an extensive recruitment plan that extends throughout the world. While most of our recruitment efforts occur in the continental U.S., travel outside of the U.S. is a part of our annual efforts. With approximately 7,000 admission applicants for 500 seats in the freshman class, Bowdoin looks to attract students who would be a good match for our learning environment, regardless of their ability to pay our fees.

Does the institution have policies and programs in place to support non-traditional students?:

A brief description of any scholarships provided specifically for part-time students:

A brief description of any onsite child care facilities, partnerships with local facilities, and/or subsidies or financial support to help meet the child care needs of students:

A brief description of other policies and programs to support non-traditional students:

Does the institution wish to pursue Part 2 of this credit (accessibility and affordability indicators)?:

Indicators that the institution is accessible and affordable to low-income students::
Percentage (0-100)
The percentage of entering students that are low-income 14
The graduation/success rate for low-income students 90
The percentage of student financial need met, on average 100
The percentage of students graduating with no interest-bearing student loan debt 75

The percentage of students that participate in or directly benefit from the institution’s policies and programs to support low-income and non-traditional students:

The website URL where information about the institution's affordability and access programs is available:

The information presented here is self-reported. While AASHE staff review portions of all STARS reports and institutions are welcome to seek additional forms of review, the data in STARS reports are not verified by AASHE. If you believe any of this information is erroneous or inconsistent with credit criteria, please review the process for inquiring about the information reported by an institution or simply email your inquiry to stars@aashe.org.