Northampton, MA
Admission Difficulty
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Reviews 828 total reviews with an average rating of 3.6

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3 College Junior

Campus Strictness: Smith is very strict in some parts like housing and dining. The dining halls will only open during certain time slots and they usually close even before the supposed time. Also, during holidays and breaks, students are forced to move to very few open houses. The school does not give any grace period for you to pack stuff and book tickets. You have to leave immediately after the school ends.

Other things at Smith can be extremely lenient. For example, the noise violation in dorm rooms seems non-exist. You can find it SO HARD to sleep/study if you have bad neighbors.

The academic atmosphere is actually the most balanced one at Smith. You do get some freedom such as self-scheduled exams. But you have to follow Honor code all the time which is very good for students who seek for fair grades.

3 College Junior

Greek Life: I do not really pay attention to that. Nobody actually talks about this.

4 College Junior

Overall Experience: I really love Smith even though there are a lot of things that I do not like. However, it is sad to see the school is going down hill due to many reasons but mainly financial ones. I hope that the school will improve in the future and able to raise more fund to provide students more resources and better services.

3 College Junior

Drug Safety: I think the drug issue at Smith is fine. There are not a lot of people doing it but we do have a few.

3 College Junior

Majors: It is very hard to get an internship as a undergrad in a small college. I eventually got an internship after spending so much efforts, but it is not really related to my major.

3 College Junior

Majors: The program is average but I definitely will not do it again. My career goal is to become a data scientist/informatics. However, my biggest concern is that studying math at Smith will not get me ready to succeed in the field. I guess I will have to go to a graduate school.

1 person found this useful Report
2 College Junior

Academics: The math department at Smith is HORRIBLE! A lot of great professors have left and now we are having those temporary lecturers, who come and go often. There are not a lot of resources and projects in the department. However, Smith does offer a variety of math courses but usually the lecturers/professors of the course will make your life miserable.

Smith does have really good departments such as Computer Science, Biology, Engineering, Government, Art History and many others. But math department really needs some improvement!!!

3 College Junior

Local Atmosphere: Northampton, the town where Smith is located, is a nice town. People are generally very kind. However, there are not much to do off-campus because the town is extremely small. Also, the transportation system is not really well-developed.

1 person found this useful Report
2 College Junior

Off-Campus Housing: Not so many students are actually permitted to live off-campus (Not Allowed for Freshman). Once you become a sophomore, you can apply to live off-campus but the process will be LONG AND FRUSTRATING! However, if you are lucky enough to get the permission and able to find a house than life becomes much better.

1 person found this useful Report
3 College Junior

Diversity: Smith has been accepting more international students lately because of financial profits. It also made efforts to provide minority/international students assistance. However, the campus does have some expected "norms" that you are expected to follow. For example, liberals are always welcomed but not so much for conservatives. Gay people actually seem to have more privileges than straight people. The religion life here is kind of non-exist. As for economic background, I believe that most students come from mid-upper class.

2 College Junior

Athletics: Smith does have really good fitness facilities. It also provides students a lot of fitness classes for academic credits. However, some instructors are actually not as good as you would expect but a few of them are awesome! Team sports are not very popular but we do have them. Because the academic work load is quite crazy here so it will be very difficult to be in a sport team.

3 College Junior

Health & Safety: The campus is generally safe but people do get their stuff stolen in libraries and even dorms. The responses of campus police are usually VERY SLOW. If you really have emergency, call 911 will be a better option.

4 Recent Alumnus

Off-Campus Dining: There are tons of options a short walk from campus though it can get expensive to go out regularly.

3 Recent Alumnus

Computers: Computer labs/printing computers get pretty crowded around finals but there's normally plenty of space.

3 Recent Alumnus

Weather: Fall in New England is the best weather. The winter isn't actually so bad - it's a very short walk from the houses to academic buildings.

4 Recent Alumnus

Health & Safety: I feel extremely safe on campus. Few people think twice about walking alone at night or leaving their bedroom doors unlocked.

5 Recent Alumnus

Campus Dining: Students can go to any dining hall on campus during meals and they all have delicious options. Unfortunately only one stays open past ~7 (mostly for the athletes after evening practice).

3 Recent Alumnus

Parking: There is a chronic shortage of on campus parking. A car is probably not worth it unless you really need one to get off campus.

3 Recent Alumnus

Campus Strictness: Compared to other schools I've been to (especially ones in cities), dorm policies are quite lenient. No one is keeping track of guests or alcohol brought in (except during official house parties). You're more likely to get in trouble for after hours noise violations than anything else.

3 Recent Alumnus

Majors: The SAT is no longer required for admission nor is an interview. Smith definitely emphasizes the importance of extracurriculars and life experiences rather than just grades.

4 Recent Alumnus

Majors: Smith has an excellent opportunity for funding (otherwise unpaid) summer internships through the Praxis program.

4 Recent Alumnus

Academics: Bio is a broad major, which forces you to take courses across all parts of the subject but allows you to focus on the particular aspect that interests you during upper level classes. The professors are approachable and supportive.

4 Recent Alumnus

Academics: There are no required general education requirements, which allows students to pursue whatever interests them most.

3 Recent Alumnus

Drug Safety: The prevalence of alcohol use is completely dependent on where on campus you live. In some houses, you might feel left out if you don't drink. In others, you'll have a perfectly good time with no underclasswomen routinely drinking.

4 Recent Alumnus

Scholarships: It tends to be the biggest headache for your first-year, just trying to get all the required info together. After that I never had any trouble and my aid stayed consistent from year to year.


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Overall ExperienceWhat's This?

Dara Kagan
Croton-on-Hudson, N.Y.
Government, with a minor in the Study of Women and Gender
View all previous student authors

One thing is for sure, Smith is not for everyone. One person’s favorite part of the school could be another’s most-hated aspect. Some cannot handle the single-sex environment, while others find it to be their favorite part of Smith. Some are miserable with the social scene and feel limited in their options, while others are perfectly content. It’s a college of extremes, and when talking to Smith students, you’ll probably find that most have an ambivalent relationship with the school. However, when it comes down to it, the education received at Smith is top-notch. The small classes and wide range of academic opportunities ensure that students are engaged and challenged. Moreover, Smith is committed to providing opportunities that most students don’t get until graduate school, such as independent research with professors in their first year or writing graduate-level theses.

Smith is not a huge party school and it’s not a stereotypical college experience, but, for most Smith students, that’s exactly the way they like it. The small campus can make students feel claustrophobic at times, but there is a tremendous sense of community, and the comfort and security of the campus ensures that students have four years to discover themselves and really come into their own. Time and again, alumnae have told students they are still very close to their friends from Smith. The campus community fosters tight bonds that last far beyond graduation.

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