Northampton, MA
Smith College


84 Ratings

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Recent Reviews

Paige
Is the stereotype of students at your school accurate?

yes. brainy lesbians and all the misfits from high school combined.

Is the stereotype of students at your school accurate?

yes. brainy lesbians and all the misfits from high school combined.

What is the stereotype of students at your school? Is this stereotype accurate?

Most people at Smith are very studious and can be intense--they are always stressed. There are lots of hipsters, lesbians, hipster lesbians, and quiet science girls who live on Green Street. People here are not very friendly and many lack social skills.

Eve
What is your overall opinion of this school?

The best thing about Smith is that everyone can feel free to be WHOMEVER they want to be. There are so many opportunities ava...

What is your overall opinion of this school?

The best thing about Smith is that everyone can feel free to be WHOMEVER they want to be. There are so many opportunities available for us to explore who we are, and everyone in our community is so supportive of each person finding their individual path. That is the best aspect of it, I think, for students. When I tell people I go to Smith they are generally impressed. Not only are our academics excellent, but the fact that Smith is a women's college also impresses on people how seriously you take your education. The town of Northampton is wonderful. It is cute, and very welcoming. The variety of restaurants for such a small town is astounding. My complaint about Smith is the liberal bias. I wish that Republicans, and conservative people had more of a presence on campus so we could have substantial debates. The other issue is that we are not trained to interact with men. There just arent' that many men around, I have had to make a special effort to take classes at Amherst and UMass (another perk!) to make sure that I am getting a well-rounded social experience as well. I will say that there is so much value in a women's college - particularly because at co-ed schools leadership roles are male-dominated. At Smith everyone can be, and in fact IS a leader on campus.

Describe how your school looks to someone who's never seen it.

I think because of Smith's housing system and the variety of architecture styles, Smith maintains an academic feel while also feeling very cozy. The campus is technically an arboretum so there are winding paths and labels on the trees so you could learn some plant names on the way to class. Most of the academic buildings look gorgeous and are most of the time covered in ivy. We also have a few modern buildings, like our campus center and the new engineering building. Both are really nice, with large windows to get maximum natural light.

What's the dating scene like?

Well if you like dating women/genderqueer people. GREAT. If you like dating men, not the best. I mean a lot of girls will have boyfriends but they wouldn't really ever meet them at Smith and interactions among the 5 Colleges are kind of limited.

Tell us about the sports scene on campus.

I'm on the crew team(hence the oar pun) and I can't tell you how much I love it. I've got this feeling a lot at Smith but it seems that sports teams are always near and dear to the athletes hearts. They are also some of the most academically excellent students at Smith. The one bad thing about sports at Smith (that many students are working to change) is that sporting events aren't commonly attended. Friends of the players might go but in general it's not a trendy kind of event.

Where is the best place to get work done on campus?

It really depends on the individual. I really like to work in the Campus Center Cafe because the tables are great and you're really close to delicious food! I also really like working in the library. We have two rooms in the library which are absolutely gorgeous and if you get on Facebook there you will feel guilty because everyone is working so hard, and you're in a beautiful academic environment. In general the library is the best place to work just because you feed off the people around you. Even though it's not the most beautiful library, we've done well with what we have. Another place is in your house! I have lived in two houses and people are always studying either in the designated study or in the dining hall! After hours, it turned into a study center which we lovingly called "Camp Sunshine". We would be able to be silly together and be close enough to our beds that it was convenient. But we also helped each other work giving each other incentives for focusing and saying "here paint your nails, but you can't do the other hand until you finish 2 pages of your paper" . There really is a sense of camaraderie in the study spaces at Smith, but if you want to be alone, there are carrels in the library and little spots to study all over campus!

What are your classes like?

I enjoy my classes. Because of the open curriculum, I have always taken any class that interested me. I have never been in a class that has more than 35 people, and the professors really expect you to engage both within class and outside of class. The students that I have encountered in my 3.5 years here are all extremely hard-working, our main characteristic I think. Every professor I have had has genuinely cared what we thought about an issue and has addressed us as peers. The work is often daunting but there are so many resources that if you want to do well, you definitely can. I have liked how challenging my classes have been without being intimidating.

What are the most popular student activities/groups?

I think one of the biggest groups on campus is the Smith Democrats. We have an excellent group and have a couple of students on the executive board of both the College Democrats of Massachusetts and the College Democrats of America! Sports are a great way to get involved and those teams tend to be pretty tightly knit. For example, I'm on the crew team and there are 60 people on the team but that is still how I met my closest friends. Smithies are very involved. We take our academics seriously and we take our extracurriculars seriously. There is always something to do, an event, a party, a lecture. A lot of people do spend Friday night getting take out and watching a movie, or catching up on some homework. But that doesnt' matter when you are surrounded by people you really like in your houses. My group of friends my from house first-year are still some of my closest friends. People do party here! We have parties nearly every weekend, and there are plenty of opportunities to go off campus and meet new people, if you choose to do so. Northampton is also a fun place. I volunteer at the Academy of Music, a local theater so I sometimes will spend my nights ushering and handing out programs then seeing a free show! There are so many ways to get involved here and so much going on that most students complain more about being overwhelmed with all the possibilities rather than being bored.

Describe the students at your school.

Smith students are for the most part liberal, and extremely "LGBTQIA" friendly. That's the biggest issue on our campus, it is a safe haven for people questioning their identity so anti-gay marriage supporters might feel uncomfortable. I think what's great about Smith is that we are all different. There aren't a whole lot of pressures on students to dress or act a certain way. Whether you want to wear Prada or sweatpants to class you will be treated the same. Furthermore, the housing system ensures that you are meeting all kinds of people and becoming friends with them because you live with them. As with anywhere though, people who are similar tend to hang out with each other. Financial backgrounds are very widely ranged and we are working on addressing issues of awareness around class equity. Overall we are incredibly diverse. We are also more focused on our own personal development than a lot of other schools I think. Though we have an excellent Career Development Office, students really feel free to pursue their passions, not just what will make them the most money.

What are the academics like at your school?

Professors at Smith are the most intelligent, most helpful people I've ever meant. As long as you make an effort in their class, they will do everything in their power to help you. Because of this, students work very very hard and spend a lot of time studying, even on the weekends. Something unique about Smith is that we don't have distribution requirements. My entire time at Smith I have felt free to take whatever class I was interested in. Learning is definitely for the sake of learning, but for some, grades. My major is Chinese, but I'm also getting a Five College Certificate in International Relations. We also have new "concentrations" which are excellent programs focused on very specific subjects. They include an aspect of experiential learning which makes them incredibly unique. The number is also increasing rapidly!

What is the stereotype of students at your school? Is this stereotype accurate?

I think the general stereotype of students is that they are really open about sexuality and that many students are queer. This stereotype is more or less accurate. Not all Smithies are gay though! However, all students are "expected" to be supportive of a variety of sexualities. Furthermore, no matter what the gender, sexuality, or identity, our students are intelligent and conscientious students.

Siobhan
Here's your chance: Say anything about your college!

Smith is part of the five-college exchange, making for a huge variety of class and degree options for a small liberal arts sc...

Here's your chance: Say anything about your college!

Smith is part of the five-college exchange, making for a huge variety of class and degree options for a small liberal arts school. The all-female (excepting trans students), generally very liberal student body makes for a great campus culture if you're a cumudgeonly progressive like me. The science and research angle is very strong for liberal arts, and all the academics are rigorous and demanding.

What should every freshman at your school know before they start?

There's nothing you need for collegiate success that you don't already have. Imagination, cleverness, and determination are in equal measure what will propell you through your studies. Don't allow yourself to be distracted. Don't turn grudges into excuses. Make time for friends and fun, of course, or risk sanity entirely, but remember that the education comes first. School is there for you. All those resources, all those books and specimens, ideas and arguments, lectures and libraries are yours. There's no room for timidity. You know exactly what you want to do, what you want to make of yourself and the world, and you have all the tools you need. You live in a world where women in the sciences are trivialized and where righteous indignation is spun into pettiness by the powers that be, but you're up to it. Every paper, lab, and discussion brings you closer to the scientist--and the person--you know you can be. Don't let a moment pass you by.

What do you consider the worst thing about your school? Why?

Smith has a bit of a cheerleader attitude about itself, mostly in a top-down way. I loved the place and the people and did not need to be told how much I did, and I was rather annoyed by how much hand-holding they seemed to think we needed to make friends and study and do other ordinary things. And it was all the more irritating when the administration did screw up in a big way.

Bethany
Describe your favorite campus traditions.

Their government and psychology departments, study abroad, financial aid and great dorms.

Describe your favorite campus traditions.

Their government and psychology departments, study abroad, financial aid and great dorms.

What's unique about your campus?

The academic opportunities and study abroad options.

What should every freshman at your school know before they start?

I would tell myself not to be so afraid, so affected by the culture shock, so homesick. I would give myself academic advice (Smith has an "open curriculum," which is great, but it makes course selection a bit overwhelming), and I'd remind myself to audition for a play. I would tell myself that time moves quickly, so go to the art museum, the hill of daffodils (before it's removed during construction), the botanical gardens, the archives. Find the secret staircase in Sessions House and move out of Capen House after your first year. Be active in Italian Club (model in their fashion show) and stay one year over January to learn Yiddish. Don't take the LSAT without studying and don't wait until senior year to take math and science. Finally, I'd tell myself to get enough sleep, leave room for a social life and not to worry because it'll all be okay.

Madeleine
Describe how your school looks to someone who's never seen it.

Smith is a liberal, accepting, diverse, wonderful, beautiful (campus-wise) enriching, interesting place with pretty good food...

Describe how your school looks to someone who's never seen it.

Smith is a liberal, accepting, diverse, wonderful, beautiful (campus-wise) enriching, interesting place with pretty good food and pretty awesome professors.

What's the one thing you wish someone had told you about freshman year?

Finding guy friends is harder than I anticipated, because you really only see guys at parties and they aren't looking for conversation. They're pretty strick about underage drinking--Smith is not a party school (although there definitely are parties.)

What should every freshman at your school know before they start?

I wish I had known how much easier procrastination becomes in college than it was in highschool. I would tell myself to stay more focused and really schedule out each day when the assignments start pouring in, because when I do that it's so much easier to stay on top of things. I would tell myself to pack less--you really don't need all that stuff. I would remind myself that it's okay to be lonely sometimes, and talking to your friends about your experiences (and realizing they're lonely sometimes too) really helps. I didn't figure that out for a while. I wish I could have told myself to breath more. The year is almost over and I survived, but I think I could have done it with less stress if I had planned my academics, taken time to meditate or something, and eaten a little healthier--more salad, fewer tater tots--because you don't need any more stress than college already is.

Rachel
What should every freshman at your school know before they start?

Just relax, stick it out. Making decisions can be difficult but remember you can always change your mind, nothings set in sto...

What should every freshman at your school know before they start?

Just relax, stick it out. Making decisions can be difficult but remember you can always change your mind, nothings set in stone.

What do you consider the worst thing about your school? Why?

The worst thing about my school would have to be its lack of men. Being around all women is very freeing and even relaxing, but I miss their input on certain subject and arguing.

What do you brag about most when you tell your friends about your school?

I tend to brag mostly about my schools housing situation. At Smith we don’t live in Dorms; we live in House’s. Your house becomes your Home within a week, and your housemates become lifelong friends. At Smith you’re not just through into a huge school and pushed aside, instead your matched fairly well with your roommate and you go through several bonding sessions with the whole house to establish fundamental relations.

Indigo
What should every freshman at your school know before they start?

I have learned more about myself, my temperment, and my personal and academic interests. I have developed a sense of independence and have found the strength to keep going even when things do work out the way I had originally planned.

Cleo
What kind of person should not attend this school?

You should not attend Smith College if you are not a critical thinker. Students and professors will continue to challenge yo...

What kind of person should not attend this school?

You should not attend Smith College if you are not a critical thinker. Students and professors will continue to challenge you and your opinion. You also cannot be close-minded when coming to Smith. There are many activists, many liberals, many different people here. If you are close-minded, you will find it difficult to relate to the student body, to get involved, to make friends, and to understand the people around you. Also, most important, do NOT attend Smith College if you have homophobia or have an issue with those who aren't heterosexual.

What's unique about your campus?

The best thing about my school is the community of intelligent and empowering women. Being surrounded by such women brings out the best in you. Your way of thinking will continuously be challenged throughout your being here. You will evolve into an overall better version of yourself. The women that you befriend here will mold you into a more confident, more open-minded, more intelligent, more aware version of yourself.

What should every freshman at your school know before they start?

I have only been in college for one semester and already I have changed so much. Before college, I procrastinated with every thing, forgot about assignments, I was unorganized, and a bit shy. Now I have learned to budget my time. I turn in all assignments on time if not early. Forgetting assignments is not an option in college. I write everything down and leave reminders for myself everywhere. I am much more responsible and reliable because of this and much more confident. Also, my college experience has given me a strong sense of accomplishment. I am going to a prestigious school filled with intelligent people who challenge me every day. Most of my professors have a Ph. D. I am learning Arabic, which is one of the hardest languages to learn. I am proud of myself. I am doing something no one in my family has done before. I am a first generation college student. I am also going to be the first graduate in my family. I am going to be the first person in my family to have a yearly salary versus hourly. College is molding me into a strong, intelligent, capable woman.

Mayli-Anne
Describe your favorite campus traditions.

Smith College is Mecca for women who love to learn and want to make things better within their communities, states, or countr...

Describe your favorite campus traditions.

Smith College is Mecca for women who love to learn and want to make things better within their communities, states, or country. It only makes sense then, that they are known everywhere for their social work degree program.

What should every freshman at your school know before they start?

My name is Mayli-Anne Waterbury and I am a robust 66 year old woman looking for scholarship aid so that I can attend Smith College in Massachusetts. A lifelong dream was to finish my college education. My goal isn?t just about me; I am looking for a way out of the self-absorption retirees can slide into-I understand at a deep level that the solution to getting out of ?me? is to become pro-active in the welfare of others. I need to be armed with all the clout I can muster to be taken seriously in a world that needs all the help it can get. I love to write. I have been published several times in self-help books and on the Op-Ed pages of state and local newspapers. I am looking to make my major English/American Studies at Smith. Later, I hope to write books, articles, and continuing with serious volunteering. Presently, I am enrolled as a part time student at the University of Rhode Island and donate my time for transparently-decent candidates seeking political office. I hope you will consider my request for the scholarship.

What kind of person should not attend this school?

I would never assume to make a judgement like that; who am I to say someone doesn't "belong" somewhere?

Dennis
What should every freshman at your school know before they start?

I am a firm proponent of universal success where every individual has an aptitude for a skill. A collegiate education will en...

What should every freshman at your school know before they start?

I am a firm proponent of universal success where every individual has an aptitude for a skill. A collegiate education will enhance and refine whatever ability that may be. But college isn?t all about the formal learning that takes place within the institutions; the experiences that colleges are able to extend to their students have a greater impact on their success than any mathematics course would. Being able to develop an ideal self based off of the experiences one has encountered is the most critical difference between a successful individual and a failure. I attended college for academic purposes like most prospective students do but in my brief time at Valencia Community College, I have gain some invaluable experiences that will mold me into a man ready to illuminate my community. As a product of the Bridges to Success Program, I have been engraved with the determination to lead others in a positive direction. Soon I attained membership of Phi Theta Kappa and Presidency of I.M.A.G.E.S. (Influential Men Applying Gifts and Employing Strategies); our goal is to promote academic achievement and community service. My college experience has gave me power to enlighten my community.

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  • Tuition & Fees
  • $47,904
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  • 37%

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