Connections - a campaign for Bridgewater College

Ensuring OUR FUTURE

We’ve reimagined our academic and student life curricula to meet the changing needs of our students, expanded engaged learning experiences and created innovative, collaborative living and learning spaces.

Well-Positioned to Change Lives

Grow our current-use scholarships so we can extend the promise of a Bridgewater education to more families—an investment with an immediate and lifechanging impact.

Role Models for Learning

Strengthen teaching and learning by supporting faculty development and nurturing the already powerful connections between Bridgewater professors and students.

Importance of Place

Create environments for learning and community-building that encourage students to collaborate more effectively and bring out the best in themselves and others.

Well-Positioned to Change Lives

Goal: Raise $10 million toward current scholarship support, to be spent over 10 years.

Like our donors, we’re resourceful, prudent financial stewards. We evaluate every investment we make through one lens: Will this make our students more successful? Having achieved a level of financial stability enjoyed by few of our peers, we know one of the most important investments we can make together in the next five to even years is to fund current-use scholarships, where every dollar raised directly and immediately supports students. Too many families today believe higher education is beyond their means.
MiKayla Higgins

Mikayla Higgins ’25 was just settling in for her first week at BC when she got news of a tragedy back home. Already a first-generation college student
on scholarship and financial aid, the biology major wasn’t sure she could financially continue her education. In stepped the Office of Financial Aid
and our donors, who made it possible for Mikayla to stay in college. “I am thankful for the scholarships I’ve gotten, and that I’m continuing to get, through Bridgewater and donors.” This current scholarship support enables Mikayla to continue toward her goal of becoming a wildlife conservationist.

Opening Doors

Bridgewater College offers a challenging academic experience while ensuring access for students from all backgrounds.
Student snapshot:

99%

receive
financial aid

31%

racial-ethnic
minorities

29%

first-generation college students

31%

eligible for a 
pell grant

Where you can have an impact:

Every dollar raised for current scholarships directly supports students. This funding is critical at a time when too many families believe higher education is beyond their means.

What this will do

Increasing our fund for current scholarships will have an immediate impact by opening the door to the Bridgewater experience for so many deserving students and their families.

Dr. Steve Baron, Harry G.M. Jopson Professor of Biology

Dr. Steve Baron, Harry G.M. Jopson Professor of Biology, exemplifies the teacher/scholar model that is a cornerstone of the Bridgewater experience.

For nearly 30 years, Dr. Baron has been actively engaging students in his own research projects on biodegradable plastics, as well as mentoring them on projects of their own design.

He is known for working with multiple students on research projects each semester in addition to teaching his regular course load. To date, he’s mentored 109 students—and counting. The laboratory is an extension of his classroom, and he uses research as a teaching tool. Research, whether part of class work or through an independent study project, makes room for different approaches to teaching and allows for various learning styles.

Although always available for guidance, he encourages students to think critically and to find answers to their questions before asking for help.

Dr. Baron has often witnessed students who have had difficulty in a traditional classroom blossom in the lab.

“I love finding a spark of learning in every student,” he said.

Muhammad Khan ’19, a biology major at Bridgewater and Ph.D. student at the University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Public Health, credits his honors project research work with Dr. Baron for providing the foundation he needed to succeed at the next level. Khan, a first-generation college student, works in an infectious disease laboratory currently developing alternative methods for COVID-19 vaccine distribution that can be used in countries with limited access to traditional vaccines.

“If it wasn’t for Dr. Baron and the entire Department of Biology at Bridgewater, I wouldn’t be able to do the research I’m doing now,” Khan said. “I’m so thankful to them.”

Role Models for Learning

Goal: Raise $10 million for teaching and learning endowed funds. 

Our faculty are true teacher-scholars and mentors to their
students. They help turn goals and dreams into real-life
possibilities, using their networks to connect students to
academic and professional opportunities. And our faculty
exemplify the power of curiosity and lifelong learning, continually reaching beyond the classroom and further into their own fields to expand and test what they know.

By investing in our faculty, you ensure that we continue to recruit and retain the transformative teachers at the heart of a Bridgewater education.

52

regular
research projects

39

honors
research projects

18

summer
research projects

31%

eligible for a 
pell grant

Where you can have an impact:

  • Endowing and naming a School
  • Endowing a Chair
  • Faculty development
  • Classroom equipment improvements
  • Endowing one of our three engaged learning programs:
    • The Research Experience at Bridgewater
    • Globalization Fund
    • Internship Program

Importance of Place

Goal: Raise $15 million for critical capital projects.

Recognizing the importance of spaces to foster engaged learning and interaction, the Connections Campaign focuses on improving facilities across campus to help collaboration flourish. In addition to the renovation of the old Alumni Gym into the Center for Career Development, Bowman Hall will be reengineered to create dynamic engaged learning spaces, and the renovation of Rebecca Quad and the Eagles Nest will extend learning, problem solving and perspective sharing to the outdoors.

Alumni Gym Exterior Rendering

AN EYE ON THE FUTURE

We’re not content to stand still. Our John Kenny Forrer Learning Commons, which opened in 2020, is now a hub of academic inquiry and serves as the gold standard for moving our campus facilities forward. It’s an example of how your gift can literally reshape our campus and the Bridgewater experience by creating spaces where collaboration and idea-sharing flourish.

Bridgewater College Campus

Future Alumni Gym Renovation

When students think about Bridgewater, we want them to think about the connections to great mentors, inspiring classmates and life-changing experiences we offer – not a price tag that makes us seem out of reach.”

– President David Bushman

President David Bushman
Drone photo of Bridgewater College
Future Alumni Gym Renovation
Student Life Suite and student gathering spaces

• New location opened in 2017

Nininger Hall

• Renovated in 2014