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April 16, 2014, 11:50 pm
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On This Day

1950 — The first live WBOA radio broadcast from the Moulton Union studios is heard on WGAN radio in Portland. The one-act play, A Pot O’ Broth, by William Butler Yeats, is the first broadcast.


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Daily Archives

April 2014
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Two Seniors Win Watson Travel Grants

2014 Watson fellows Alex Marecki ’14 and Rodrigo Bijou ’14

2014 Watson fellows Alex Marecki ’14 and Rodrigo Bijou ’14

A humanitarian soccer player and an advocate for greater digital privacy have each won a one-year grant from the Thomas J. Watson Foundation to travel the world.

While the two seniors, Alexander Marecki and Rodrigo Bijou, share a strong sense of purpose and a deep curiosity, they have strikingly different agendas for next year. Marecki, a lifelong soccer player, plans to volunteer with nonprofits, from Scotland to Ghana, which help disadvantaged children through soccer. Bijou will investigate hacker communities in South America and Europe.

Each year, the Watson fellowship awards $28,000 to 40 or so graduating seniors, with the stipulation that they don’t return to the United States for 12 months. Cindy Stocks, Bowdoin’s director of student fellowships and research, said the fellowship supports students who have particular passions and specific aims. A compelling Watson project is one whose goals can’t be accomplished by any other means, such as graduate school or the Peace Corps. “Alex and Rodrigo proposed fascinating projects that couldn’t be achieved without the support of a Watson Fellowship,” Stocks said. Read more about the two seniors’ plans.

Kolster Takes Camera to the Savannah River (Augusta Chronicle)

As part of his Guggenheim-funded project ‘Take Me to the River,’ Associate Professor of Art Michael Kolster spent a month this spring photographing the Savannah River in the southeastern U.S., where his old-fashioned camera setup caught the eye of an editor at The Augusta Chronicle (of Augusta, Georgia).

Overlooking the Savannah River and I-20 Bridge, Aiken County, SC Michael Kolster, 2014, ambrotype, 7 3/8 x 9 3/16 inches

Overlooking the Savannah River and I-20 Bridge, Aiken County, SC
Michael Kolster, 2014, ambrotype, 7 3/8 x 9 3/16 inches

Starting in 2011, with Maine’s very own Androscoggin River as his first subject, Kolster has been using a 19th-century wet-plate photography technique to explore the stories of American rivers that were hit with pollution at the onset of the Industrial Revolution – rivers that went on to experience an age of recovery after the 1972 Clean Water Act.

“As they shed their role as depositories of waste and become cleaner, they are also undergoing large shifts in how we view them,” Kolster said in the story. “I use an older, antiquated photographic process to consider how the past and present uses of these places intermingle to affect their appearance.”

See more photographs and learn more about the project on Kolster’s website.

Alexa Staley ’11 Shares Her ‘Passion for Understanding’


Alexa Staley512

Alexa Staley ’11, interviewed in the documentary, “LIGO, A Passion for Understanding.”

Alexa Staley ’11, currently a graduate student at Columbia, is featured in the documentary, “LIGO, A Passion for Understanding,” which shares the work of the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-wave Observatory and those who help support it. Staley, daughter of Bowdoin College Trustee Jes Staley ’79, thought perhaps she’d be an economics major when she first came to the College, but after encountering Einstein’s General Theory of Relativity in a course taught by Professor of Physics and Astronomy Thomas Baumgarte, Staley says she was hooked. Staley speaks of her work in experimental physics about 7:00 into the film.

Stop the Presses: Four Bowdoin Alumni Awarded Pulitzer Honors



Breaking news, rolled into a correction: As the Bowdoin Daily Sun first told you Tuesday morning, a number of alumni have earned Pulitzer honors, but sources tell us there are more than first reported.

Boston Globe reporter Joshua Miller ’08, and Globe editors Cynthia Needham ’99 and Scott Allen ’83 are part of the team awarded a Pulitzer in the Breaking News Reporting category for its coverage of the Boston Marathon bombings and the ensuing manhunt. Miller and Allen both reported for the Bowdoin Orient.

Mary Helen Miller ’09 — who was the Orient‘s opinion editor in her first year, features editor the year after, managing editor during her junior year, and co-editor-in-chief as a senior — was nominated as part of a team from the Chattanooga Times Free Press as finalists for their work on “Speak No Evil,” a series exploring the “no-snitch” culture that helps perpetuate a cycle of violence in one of the most dangerous cities in the South.



Bowdoin College President to Step Down in 2015


Bowdoin College President Barry Mills announced Monday that he will step down in June 2015 at the conclusion of his 14th year as head of Maine’s oldest college.

“Anyone who knows me knows how much I love leading Bowdoin, and Karen and I and our boys are proud citizens of Brunswick,” wrote Mills in an email message to Bowdoin students, faculty, and staff. “It is the honor of a lifetime to serve as president of this fantastic College, which is as strong today as in any period during its proud history. In fact, it is because of this strength and because of my affection for the College that I choose to step down next year. Transitions are inevitable, and after what will be 14 tremendous years as president, I believe it is time for me to make way for new leadership to propel Bowdoin into its next period of greatness.”

Mills, 63, said he does not intend to retire and will seek another “professional challenge.” He noted that he has “reinvented” himself several times during his career and is “eager to see what comes next.” In his message to the Bowdoin community, Mills said his announcement would do nothing to slow progress at the liberal arts college. “There will be plenty of time later to look back on our time together, but not now,” wrote Mills. “For now, it must be full speed ahead to preserve access and opportunity, and to strive constantly for the excellence that sets Bowdoin apart.”

In The News
U.S. Senator Angus King H’07 and U.S. Rep. Michael Michaud released statements about President Mills’ announcement. Read coverage in the Bangor Daily News.

In a separate message to students, faculty, and staff, the chair of Bowdoin’s Board of Trustees, Deborah Jensen Barker, praised Mills for his exceptional contributions and announced the formation of a search committee to name his successor. Barker said the committee will be named in May and will include representatives from Bowdoin’s faculty, staff, alumni, and student body. “Barry’s shoes will be tremendously difficult to fill,” said Barker, “but with thanks to his leadership, our College has never been in a stronger position. We will take on this task with gratitude for his remarkable service and with confidence in our ability to identify the very best candidate to serve as Bowdoin’s 15th president.”

A native of Rhode Island, Mills graduated in 1968 from Pilgrim High School in Warwick, RI. He was a Dean’s List student at Bowdoin, where he graduated cum laude in 1972 with a double major in biochemistry and government. He earned his doctorate in biology in 1976 at Syracuse University and his law degree at the Columbia University School of Law in 1979, where he was a Harlan Fiske Stone Scholar. Prior to becoming Bowdoin’s 14th president in 2001, he served as deputy presiding partner of Debevoise & Plimpton in New York City, one of the nation’s preeminent international law firms. His wife, Karen Gordon Mills, served in President Barack Obama’s cabinet as the administrator of the U.S. Small Business Administration from 2009 until August 2013. She is currently a Senior Fellow at the Harvard Business School and at the Harvard Kennedy School, Beginning in July 2014, she will be a member of the Harvard Corporation, known formally as the President and Fellows of Harvard College — Harvard’s principal fiduciary governing board. The couple has three sons, William, Henry, and George, all of whom are graduates of Brunswick High School.

For additional biographical information, and downloadable photos of Barry and Karen Mills, visit the Bowdoin College website.

25 Pieces of Wisdom for Beginning Entrepreneurs (Business Insider)



The grocery list for a successful start-up is not unfamiliar. You’re going to need money, drive, expertise, patience and nerves of steel. As you collect these items, check out what 25 established entrepreneurs wish they had known from the start.



How Famous Artists and Scholars Lived (Twisted Sifter)

Ludwig van Beethoven I Antique Portrait GalleryLast year, Mason Currey published his book, Daily Rituals: How Artists Work, which took an in-depth look at the daily routines of 161 of history’s most influential people. Twisted Sifter provides a preview of 16 of Currey’s featured artists, with info-graphics to represent how each person broke down their daily routines. 

Students Show Off International Talents

At the International Club’s 2014 annual talent show, students and faculty performed acts representing cultures all over the world, including France, Cambodia, Vietnam, Spain, China and the United States.

Each year, Bowdoin’s student-run International Club hosts a show for students, staff and faculty to play music, dance, sing or, as the case may be, perform card tricks. The club also orders takeout from local ethnic restaurants, treating the show’s attendees to a feast of noodles, curries and spicy stir-fries.

The Saturday evening show included the following performers: Phoebe Zhang ’16 (piano); Max Miao ’17 (xiao); Postdoctoral Fellow in Mathematics Justin Marks (vocals); Alexis Little ’14 (piano and vocal); Justin Hung ’15 (guitar); Violet Ranson ’16 (poetry); Lucy Luo ’16 and Richard Guo ’17 (magic card performance); Viet Nguyen ’14 (piano and vocal); Amalie MacGowan ’15 (vocal); June Guo ’16 and June Woo ’16 (dance); Chandy Eng and Sivgech Chheng (dance and vocal); and Adjunct Lecturer in French Erin Curren (dance). Read the full story.

A Non-Economic Measure of Well-Being (Economist)

Graphs charts statistical models Here’s another acronym for you: SPI, or Social Progress Index. Heard of it? Probably not, since it’s a newly developed indicator that is especially designed to be a non-economic measure of well-being. SPI tracks 132 countries across 54 indicators that look at social, health and environmental factors. When SPI is then situated with GDP, we can see how countries do in social inclusiveness compared to economic strength — typically correlated but not always. Just one example is Brazil and Kuwait, which rank about the same in terms of social progress, despite the Gulf country having four times the GDP per person. See GDP vs. SPI graphed and how different countries fall onto the graph on the Economist. 

Monday Scoreboard


Women’s Lacrosse —  The women’s lacrosse team celebrated Senior Day with a resounding 17-2 non-conference win over Wheaton Sunday.

Men’s Tennis —  The men’s tennis team couldn’t overcome a 3-0 deficit after doubles play in an eventual 7-2 loss to Amherst Sunday at Maine Pines Tennis Club.

Women’s Tennis —  The women’s tennis team came within a single match of upsetting second-ranked Emory Sunday afternoon, falling 5-4 to the Eagles in a non-conference match at Maine Pines Tennis Club.

Softball —  The softball team dropped a pair of low-scoring games to defending national champion Tufts Sunday afternoon.

Rowing — The Bowdoin crew shone in the Knechy Cup finals on Mercer Lake in West Windsor, N.J. on Sunday. The First Men and First Women took gold, the Second Women were silver, and the Novice Women won the bronze.  Complete results here.

Sailing — The Bowdoin sailing team competed in a pair of regattas this weekend as their season comes to its homestretch. A complete report from Coach Pizzo here.