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Highest total gifts received for BowdoinOne Day in the past five years, increased on-campus engagement

February 24, 2023

Carolina Weatherall
ONE DAY, FUN DAY: Alumni relations hosts the annual One Day fundraising event on and off campus, engaging with current students and alumni through a campaign focused on kindness.

The Office of Development and Alumni Relations hosted BowdoinOne Day—the College’s annual day of giving—last Thursday. The College received 2,120 donations for One Day, exceeding its goal of 2,047, which equals the number of students currently enrolled at Bowdoin. It also marks the highest total number of gifts given on One Day in the past five years.

Additionally, several anonymous donors gave $100 for each donation made to the College, unlocking another $212,000.

After facing challenges with engaging the College community due to gathering restrictions during the Covid-19 pandemic, Alumni Relations tried giving One Day a new spin, which proved successful.

“Last year, we framed BowdoinOne Day around kindness for the first time and activated campus in ways we never had before.… It was the first time we had that much energy on campus, and it was so exciting that we decided to try it again this year,” Executive Director of Annual Giving Christi Lumiere wrote in an email to the Orient.

One Day 2023 was the day before National Random Acts of Kindness Day, and it once again focused on spreading kindness across campus and beyond.

On campus, over 30 partners put on various events throughout the day. This included free hot tea and coffee at The Café sponsored by Senior Vice President and Dean for Student Affairs Janet Lohmann in the morning and trivia night hosted by Executive Director of Safety and Security Randy Nichols.

“The day on campus was a lot of fun and alumni, family and friends enjoyed watching from afar,” Lumiere wrote.

Community members unable to visit Brunswick followed along with One Day celebrations on social media guided by Lance Conrad ’91 and the polar bear mascot.

Additionally, One Day’s web presence received a makeover, with a new fundraising platform that made giving more interactive. The website was updated throughout the day so people could follow along with activity from each class of alumni.

Beyond supporting the College monetarily, members of the Bowdoin community far and wide were able to both share words of encouragement with current students and give thanks to those who helped them during their own Bowdoin careers on the online Wall of Kindness.

“It’s not only a time for alumni, families and friends to make gifts to Bowdoin’s annual funds, but also a time to reflect on what makes this place so special,” Lumiere wrote.

The funds from annual gifts are key to the operation and needs of all aspects of the College, including financial aid, academic departments, student activities and athletic teams. Though the total amount of money given to the College is important, Lumiere noted that engagement is paramount to ensuring the continued support of the Annual Funds.

“The goal is about participation, not about total money raised, and it fosters a sense of community among all the people who care deeply about the College,” Lumiere wrote.

With increased optimism stemming from this year’s high participation, Alumni Relations is excited to continue making One Day an engaging tradition for students on campus while also fostering the Bowdoin community remotely.

“From the enthusiasm of alumni, families and friends, to the incredible generosity of those who make gifts to the annual funds, to the exciting energy on campus, it all serves as a reminder of how special our community is,” Lumiere wrote.


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