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Features

A look back on the College’s testing program

Last March, during its 218th academic year, the College sent the student body home for the first time in institutional history. In the midst of every major world event from 1794 to present day, Bowdoin felt that it had the ability to maintain the safety of its students, faculty, staff and surrounding community.

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Beneath the emotionless waiting room

Content warning: This article contains descriptions of substance use disorder and violence. I remember staring at the ceiling of some waiting room of some hospital that I can’t remember the name of. I had spent the previous night riding with my uncle down from Cleveland, Ohio to Johnson City, Tennessee.

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Pinky D’s: Behind the iconic Friday night poutine truck

The Pinky D’s food truck, a mishmash of black and white checkers complemented by pink racing stripes, is nearly as colorful as the meal served out of it: poutine. The dish, a staple in Canada, is made of thick-cut fries topped with piping hot gravy and cheese curds, making it the perfect late night snack for hungry Bowdoin students.

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Professor Takematsu researches the science of sunlight

Assistant Professor of Chemistry and Biochemistry Kana Takematsu follows the sunlight and wants Bowdoin students to do the same. “I’ve always been interested in light,” Takematsu said. Back in her grad school days at the California Institute of Technology, a guest lecturer in geology took Takematsu’s inorganic chemistry seminar on a field trip to a natural science museum.

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International Students

International students reflect on a tumultuous and frustrating year

Following a programming series for ‘international students week,’ the International Student Alliance (ISA) organized a celebration reflecting on a bittersweet year, which took place at 30 College on Thursday afternoon. While the celebration was an uplifting and recreational event, many international students also voiced frustrations and concerns in response to the uncertainties that lie ahead.

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Under pressure: the unseen burden of expectations

I think often of my walk back home from my bus stop after school when I was younger. I was often shaking in fear, with my eyes stinging with tears at the thought of what I might come home to—either an empty, quiet trailer to finish my homework, or an angry, drunken mother who would take her frustrations out on me and disrupt the rest of the evening.

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Mr. Tuna: Brunswick’s new mobile sushi staple

Drawing in hungry Bowdoin students with fresh and mouthwatering sushi rolls, the Mr. Tuna food truck has quickly become a staple of the Bowdoin foodie’s diet. The truck offers an array of sushi roll options of every style and flavor, satisfying customers no matter their personal taste.

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Brunswick

Restoring the Lemont Block

The Lemont Block, a four-story historic brick building on the corner of Maine Street and Pleasant Street that has been an iconic part of the Brunswick skyline for over 150 years, is about to have a new chapter added to its storied history.

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International Students

‘This International Life’: Professor Devgan talks about lived experiences as an international student

As part of programming for International Week, which celebrates international students and occurs in the last week of every April, Bowdoin’s International Student Association (ISA) hosted a talk led by Visiting Assistant Professor of Sociology Shruti Devgan “This International Life.” Devgan, a former international student and current international scholar herself, shared her own experiences with these identities as well as her perspective on how recent events have challenged and complicated the experience of international students in the United States.

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Sazón y Corazón

Where a poor man can eat like a king

A family friend of mine once said: “Peru is the only country in South America where a poor man can eat like a king.” This exchange came in Lima during a night out at a Madam Tusan chifa restaurant where I had Cru Yok pork with vegetables and pineapples, roasted duck and a side of Min Pao.

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Breaking the silence

Content warning: This article contains descriptions of child sexual abuse and of mental health difficulties following such experiences. Sometimes, when my mother was gone, her boyfriend would come into my room. He would always knock on my bedroom door the same way, a sound that still creeps into my thoughts from time to time to this day.

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Pandemic Picks

Pandemic Picks: Let’s hit the road

  This week, I find myself once again unable to justify recommending a book. While this could be due to both my overall diminishing creativity as the semester comes to a close and the fact that my mind is focused on finding a job in one of the worst economies in recent memory, I’m inclined to believe that a book recommendation just isn’t what everyone needs right now.

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Vacuoles of Knowledge

How (not) to be a god

The year: probably somewhere around 560 BCE. The place: Mount Etna. The star of this story: Empedocles, Greek philosopher and self-proclaimed god. Now, just for a little background on the god situation, this kind of claim was not new for Empedocles.

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The wave that carries me away

Content warning: This article contains descriptions of alcoholism, domestic violence and verbal abuse.  I will never forget the thumping. I find myself on the ground, my head spinning so haphazardly that I can’t stand up. I lay on the floor of my kitchen and stare at the ceiling above me; it falls in and out of focus.

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Anti-Racism

Xing ’23 and Asian Students Alliance shed light on racism with group photo project

Five years ago, the Asian Students Alliance (ASA) and South Asian Students Association (SASA) created #ThisIs2016, which took the internet by storm. After remembering the series five years since its conception, Cheng Xing ’23 proposed the ASA’s Affinity Group Photo Project, an iteration of #ThisIs2016, in hopes of providing a platform for members of Bowdoin affinity groups to express themselves on campus.

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Sazón y Corazón

Latin-QUE? The Complexity of the “X”

Identity is extremely complicated, particularly for people of Latin American origin here in the United States. Numerous ethnic classifications for people like this exist here, but the two most commonly used terms are “Hispanic” and “Latino/a.” Although sometimes used interchangeably, these two terms differ greatly in meaning and origin.

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Campus

‘A living autobiography’: Bowdoin Moments seeks to capture the Bowdoin experience

The Bowdoin experience can now be inscribed onto a digital space, dedicated to documenting memories and celebrating Bowdoin’s unique community. Created by Max Freeman ’22 and Camilo Pareja ’22, Bowdoin Moments is an online platform where anyone with Bowdoin memories—whether they be students, faculty, staff members, alumni and visitors—is invited to share their stories in geospatial tags accompanied with a few sentences of reflections.

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Pandemic Picks

Pandemic Picks: Returning myths to their gay glory

I will never forgive people who make fun of other people for reading shitty, gay fan-fiction. In a country where people still ban books because of the sexual and romantic identities included in the pages or where a movie about gay characters can’t include a single fricking accurate sex scene, you’re just a downright terrible person if you hate on queer people for looking towards obscure Tumblr posts or websites for some form of media representation.

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Brunswick

Bay Bowls: Brunswick’s new spot for a technicolor refreshment

During the College’s two-day break, many Bowdoin students living on campus found a moment of refreshment while enjoying free smoothie bowls sponsored by the Bowdoin Student Government (BSG). More than 1,000 students picked up a bowl from the newly-opened Bay Bowls on March 21 and 22, and the store’s owners are excited to continue serving the Brunswick community.

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Sazón y Corazón

My favorite happy neighborhood

Google often artistically alters its logo to commemorate notable events, holidays or historical figures. Known as a Google Doodle, it often contains interesting information about what’s being commemorated, and I enjoy reading about the different people and occasions being recognized.

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Class of 2023 council launches friend-matching program

Making friends is no simple task, with or without a pandemic. The return to campus earlier this month marked the first time the majority of students could see long-missed friends in nearly a year. The 2023 Class Council is helping their classmates foster new connections through a “friend-matching” program.

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Social Media

Meet “Janie at Bowdoin,” the TikTok star of campus staff

As students geared up for a return to campus unlike any other, one Bowdoin staff member found herself at the center of unexpected Internet stardom. With thousands of views across more than 20 videos and features on multiple local news networks, Director of Content Janie Porche became a community favorite through her popular TikTok account: @Janie_at_bowdoin.

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Brunswick

Giltner ’23 worked to bring historic rocket launch

For James Giltner ’23, what started out as a search for how to fill his semester away from Bowdoin turned into a groundbreaking learning experience—one that culminated in a historic rocket launch. Last fall, Giltner worked full-time at bluShift, a Brunswick-based company that launched a rocket from the Loring Commerce Center in Limestone, Maine, on January 31.

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Sazón y Corazón

The reggaeton revolution

Every December, music streaming service Spotify releases their annual “Wrapped” review, which examines the most popular music of the year for both individual users and the platform as a whole. Across social media, Spotify users shared their most beloved artists, songs and genres, as well as the occasional “top 0.5 percent of listeners” badge.

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Talk of the Quad

Why I miss the noise in my mind

During my first year on Bowdoin’s campus, thousands of questions would swim through my head on any given day. Some of them would be necessary (Thorne or Moulton today?), others slightly less so (What would my psychology professor look like without his famed beard?).

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Talk of the Quad

Distance in the age of surreality

I was taught to appreciate distance on a small playground during a rainy day. Having attended a boarding school in suburban China since I was 12, I remember the compulsory military training that first confounded my idea of an inseparable family life, forever based in unconditional love, connectedness and rationality.

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Sazón y Corazón

The rats are at it again

The world held its breath this last week as the American election dominated headlines, news and the thoughts of millions of people. Democracy won once again in the United States as Joe Biden defeated Donald Trump in one of the most polarized elections in American history.

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Mindfulness Over Matter builds dynamic meditation community

As anxiety over the elections runs high in the student body, Mindfulness Over Matter, a student-run meditation group, encourages students to find the time in their busy schedules to pause and practice mindfulness. Through a variety of meditation sessions—available four times each week—as well as meditation tips and facts that they share with the Bowdoin community on their Instagram page, the club hopes to emphasize the restorative and healing properties of meditation.

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According to J

To the Counseling Center, I appreciate you

For this piece, I’m writing solo and without my dearest writer-in-crime. And unfortunately, because of that, this piece will be undoubtedly less funny. Feel free to stop reading now. Our articles in the past have discussed student life on campus and things we yearn to see change in our interactions with students and professors regarding race.

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Elections 2020

Campaigns and elections class anticipates Election Day

For most Bowdoin students and faculty, the past week has been a time for brief conversations and announcements about how class structures and schedules may be impacted by the results—or lack thereof—of next week’s elections. But for Professor of Government Michael Franz and the 75 students in the two sections of his Campaigns and Elections class, next week will provide the culmination of two months of analyzing political data and studying election history.

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Talk of the Quad

Upside down again

It’s a Sunday afternoon in October. I’m sitting on my couch underneath my new plush blanket covered in cartoons of ghosts and of the word “boo.” There’s a candle burning on my desk. Outside, the leaves are swirling down from the trees, like a typical Maine autumn day.

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Page Two October 23

In a surprise email, the long awaited decision of Bowdoin’s plan for the spring semester has finally been released. And we won’t sugar coat it—things look pretty bleak for our first years. It was decided that, after being used as guinea pigs to see if everyone got COVID-19 while back on campus, the first years have served their purpose and are to  be shipped home in November, not to return until next year.

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Elections 2020

Bowdoin Democrats make their case to Mainers ahead of elections

While the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic will certainly make this election unlike any other, the Bowdoin Democrats (Bowdoin Dems) are still offering interested students multiple opportunities each week to participate in Democratic organizing. Between thrice-weekly phone banks, twice-weekly group walks to the polls in Brunswick and in-person canvassing, Bowdoin Dems’ eight-person officer team has created ways for students, both remote and on-campus, to get involved as Election Day quickly approaches.

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Sazón y Corazón

My first love, fútbol

I had never witnessed a more beautiful scene in my life. The red and white shades colored every shop and restaurant around me. The coastal night sky boomed with fireworks as the moonlight shone on the pristine waters of Larcomar, a shopping centre in the district of Miraflores, Peru.

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Academic

Baldwin Center charts path forward in supporting student academic endeavors

It is officially fall in Brunswick: cooling temperatures, changing leaves and the beginning of essay-writing season. For first years, it means getting back their first college papers and potentially facing the disappointment of lower-than-expected grades. “I was really struggling to get a strong cohesive idea throughout my paper,” said Ian Pratt ’24 of his first paper on Plato for his first-year writing seminar, “Human Being and Citizen.” That’s when Pratt decided to make an appointment with a writing assistant through the Baldwin Center for Learning and Teaching (BCLT).

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According to J

To the Bowdoin intellectuals

With pictures of professors passionately lecturing and students of various backgrounds having engaging conversations plastered on Bowdoin’s website, one is bound to make assumptions about the academic culture of the College. It’s a picturesque bastion of liberal arts education, a breeding ground for new ideas and radical thought, a nursery for critical thinking and passionate debate.

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PAGE TWO: Security Report September 25

Thursday, September 17 Several students on campus reported being approached by a man offering to sell illicit drugs. Security identified a possible suspect who was later identified as an 18-year-old Brunswick resident. The Brunswick police located the suspect and issued a criminal trespass order barring him from all College properties.

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Sazón y Corazón

The day I stared at the putrid face of racism

One of the most beautiful jerseys added to my collection over the summer became a canary yellow “19/20 Brazil” jersey stamped with a green print reading Black Lives Matter on the back. My body proudly displayed this jersey on August 16, a cloudy afternoon somehow perfect enough to go walking and hunting for Eevees on Pokemon Go.

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Talk of the Quad

A confession of a third culture kid

During the first month at Bowdoin, the most common question everybody asked me was “Where are you from?” I think I just gave up at a certain point (maybe starting this semester) and gave them what they wanted to hear—“I’m Chinese American.” To be honest, I don’t even think I answered their question, but it was enough.

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Sazón y Corazón

Why my dad didn’t say he loved me, and why that’s OK

Like many other Bowdoin students, the second half of my spring semester became an unusual mix of awkward online classes, dreading trying to find a summer job and fear of the coronavirus reaching the doorstep. Unfortunately, COVID-19 decided to visit my household, and thus for a major part of it, I stayed locked inside my tiny room binging on “Rick and Morty” and fried plantains.

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Mental Health

Counseling Services and students prioritize mental health during remote semester

In an effort to address significant barriers to community-building this semester, Counseling Services has made major changes to their programming. In an email to the Orient, Interim Director of the Counseling and Wellness Services Roland Mendiola discussed the multitude of resources Counseling Services will offer this semester, including mental health classes, workshops, presentations and consults, along with the online counseling and psychiatric sessions that Counseling Services has offered previously.

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Photo Essay

Photo essay: “no justice, no peace”

Over the past three weeks since George Floyd’s death at the hands of the Minneapolis police on Monday, May 25, Americans across the country have taken to the streets in protest. These mass demonstrations focus not only on justice for Floyd, Breonna Taylor and others who were slain by police violence, but also on calling for an uncompromising reexamination of institutional racism in our nation.

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Dear America

The case for saying it as it is

The summer of 2012 was an extraordinary one for me. The birch trees of Northern California stood out against the fiery sunsets. The kids in my host family and I shared “High School Musical” references while “Call Me Maybe” by Carly Rae Jepsen played in the background.

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Talk of the Quad

Studying abroad in the 50th state

From early January to mid-March of this year, I spent much of my free time swimming, surfing, sunbathing and hiking around the beautiful island of Oahu. Studying at the University of Hawai’i at Manoa, I spent most of my time in the classroom learning about Hawaiian history and culture, the U.S.-militarized Pacific and American imperialism.

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Page 2 Online

press F to pay respects

I was a yearbook writer in high school. Yes, no need to comment, I know that is literally the most useless job in history. My memory of it is punishment enough, thank you. It kinda pains me to think about all of the hours I spent fixing comma splices in copies about homecoming dances and sophomore cheer seasons, but I guess the Orient has some sense of humor and considered that the same thing as writing jokes because I was literally hired as the comedy writer this year due to my experience in yearbook.

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Talk of the Quad

Still moving forward

I sing and play my music loudly to mask the ominous rattling coming from the engine of my 2003 Jeep Liberty. On my drive, I pass all of the major landmarks of my hometown. The pizza shop I used to work at, the only grocery store in town, the donut shop, the ice cream place, my high school, the bank, the car repair place and the tobacco fields.

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