Launched last year after two years of planning, the Arts Collaborative was an interdisciplinary team that worked across disciplines and borders to enhance and coordinate the vitality and visibility of the arts at Bates. Interim Center Director Georgia Nigro worked with the team last year as it planned and carried out two campus-wide roundtables about the arts, an Arts Summit with several outside consultants from liberal arts institutions, and the first-ever Arts Crawl, featuring students making art all over the campus. Of particular value to the Harward Center was the visit of consultant Amara Geffen, a sculptor from Allegheny College, during the Arts Summit. Amara’s sculptures of repurposed road signs along the Pennsylvania highways inspired us and sparked important conversations about social entrepreneurship.
Bonner Leader Program
This marks the completion of our third year of the Bonner Leader Program, part of the Princeton, NJ-based Bonner Foundation’s national network of 80 campuses dedicated to student leadership, community service, and academic engagement. Last year, 22 Bonners, first-years through seniors, took part in this four-year program, including: 6-8 hours per week of community service (this can take many forms, including academic community-engaged learning, volunteerism, and community-engaged research and/or thesis); weekly opportunities for training and reflection; and cornerstone activities such as service exchanges with other campuses and program planning.
Bates students have long been involved in policy research and volunteer advocacy work concerning public affairs. The Harward Center has worked to strengthen and deepen that commitment.
We continue to offer our Civic Forum Series, now in its sixth year, which is an annual series of panels and lectures, bringing public leaders, advocates, activists and policy experts to campus to discuss issues of importance to Bates, Maine and beyond.
In January, the Harward Center collaborated with Project Pericles to host a free day-long training session in community organizing as part of the “Debating for Democracy (D4D)” program. The training, which brings together students, staff and community members, was led by Soapbox Consulting.
Shortridge Summer Residency
The Shortridge Summer Residency is now in its fourth year. Each year, geology students have conducted thesis research on Seawall Beach and at Bates-Morse Mountain during the summer season, adding to a growing understanding of the geologic processes of the area. Overall, the summer residency has proven to offer rewarding opportunities to both students and the Phippsburg community.