The Bowdoin Office of Student Aid has announced that it will waive the summer work expectation component of student financial aid packages as a result of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. In an email sent to all students who receive financial aid, Micheal Bartini, director of financial aid, cited an effort to relieve financial pressure in what he called a time with a “unique combination of stresses related to COVID-19.” Bartini clarified that the work expectation would be replaced with an additional grant, and that this change was only applicable to the 2020-2021 academic year.
Like many visual art students, Maddie Squibb ’20 went into the semester choosing between a couple of courses. “Printmaking II or an advanced painting independent study?” she wondered. “And then I got the email about the Kaempfer Fund running out and it made me think, ‘Oh, I guess I won’t pursue an independent study,’” said Squibb, who is a visual arts minor.
The College has created an online form for students to apply for emergency financial aid, Dean of Students Janet Lohmann announced in an email to the student body last Friday. The fund—which will cover the costs of “emergencies, special programs, test prep, supplies, travel and unanticipated events,” according to the website—is composed of donations from the Bowdoin community.
For most students, it doesn’t. For some, they save money. Students receiving financial aid see no change to their packages if they opt to live off campus, regardless of the cost of the off-campus house. “We do financial aid the same way because irrespective of where you live, you’re going to pay,” said Michael Bartini, the director of student aid.
A greater percentage of students in the Class of 2021 are receiving financial aid than in any class before, reflecting in part a change in the Office of Admissions’ high school recruitment and application fee policies.