College gives every student free MacBook Pro, iPad mini and Apple Pencil


If you're in college, maybe it's time to transfer?
If you're in college, maybe it's time to transfer?
Photo: Bowdoin College

In 2020, Bowdoin College in Maine launched a $1.7 million program to give students iPads and accessories. It was a response to the COVID-19 pandemic. On Tuesday, the school said it would expand what it calls its Digital Excellence Commitment. Now it will provide every student with a MacBook Pro, an iPad and an Apple Pencil.

Bowdoin College covers Apple gear costs

Bowdoin, a liberal arts college in Brunswick, Maine, with about 1,800 students, said it will cover the costs for its Digital Excellence Commitment.

Every first-year student gets a 13-inch MacBook Pro plus an iPad mini with an Apple Pencil. Students also will gain access to software used in courses starting in fall 2022.

And the program’s not just for new students. Returning students will continue to use the iPad Pro and Apple Pencil they received previously, and the college will give them a 13-inch MacBook Pro and software, as well.

Should students want to keep their Apple gear after graduation, they will be charged $1. And their MacBooks and iPads will come with four years of AppleCare+ insurance coverage.

‘The power of a common technology platform’

“During the pandemic we witnessed firsthand the power of a common technology platform for teaching and learning, along with the substantial and differential benefits that come with the combination of a MacBook Pro and an iPad with an Apple Pencil,” said Bowdoin College President Clayton Rose.

Rose added the additional commitment will “level the playing field so that every student has the opportunity to fully benefit from the technology that plays an essential and growing role in the learning experience at Bowdoin. Our central mission is to deliver an exceptional liberal arts education along with the knowledge and skills students need to lead in our increasingly digital world.”

The college said it added the MacBook Pro because it found notebooks are still required for aspects of academic work, including “discipline-specific software and other needs.”

Susan Prescott, Apple VP of education and enterprise product marketing, called the expansion “a testament to the College’s forward thinking and the results already seen from providing its students with powerful Apple products.”


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