Local Area

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Local Area


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3 College Sophomore

Local Area: 20 minute commute to the nearest interesting city (Providence)

3 College Senior

Local Area: There is very little interaction with the locals at Bryant, the closed campus keeps the university seperate.

4 College Sophomore

Local Area: Providence is 10 mins away and the local area has stuff to do in it too. No complaints on the surrounding area.

3 College Sophomore

Local Area: Smithfield is not that great, but Providence is a blast.

5 College Junior

Local Area: Very quiet and beautiful. School is surrounded by nature.


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Student Author OverviewWhat's this?

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Smithfield, R.I., is a very small town, but the perfect location for Bryant University. A 15- to 20-minute drive to Providence, Smithfield is far away enough from the big city that it feels like a safe haven for students. There are many shopping centers located just miles from campus which cater to most students' everyday needs. These include everything from Target and Stop & Shop (a large grocery chain), Walmart and Kohl's, to liquor stores, movie theaters, nail and tanning salons, many shopping malls, and a variety of popular restaurants. There are also a few bars and clubs in the area to keep students entertained at night. Although there isn't a lot to do directly off campus, there are always events and activities going on around school, including shows, movie nights, giant Bingo games, and plenty of parties. Not only is there always something going on around campus, but Bryant is also conveniently located close to three major cities—Providence, Boston, and NYC—all of which are a bus ride away. Students looking for more excitement frequently make the 15 minute trip to Providence, which has a lot to offer college students. For example, the Providence Place Mall, which houses more than 170 stores and a variety of restaurants, can keep you busy for hours. Providence's Thayer and Wickenden streets are filled with trendy boutiques, shops, and restaurants, which are very popular with college students. Also, WaterFire, the Providence Performing Arts Center, and the Dunkin' Donuts Center offer a variety of entertainment choices. Boston (45 minutes away) and New York City (three hours by bus or train) are easily accessible for a weekend away. There are also beaches and ski areas that are close enough for day trips.

Facts & Statistics

Fun Local Trivia
  1. Smithfield is known as Apple Valley due to its abundance of apple orchards and farms.
  2. Smithfield was located within the boundaries of Providence, R.I., until 1731.
  3. There are several historical sites in Smithfield, including Georgiaville Historic District, Saint Thomas Episcopal Church and Rectory, Smith-Appleby House, Smithfield Exchange Bank, and Waterman-Winsor Farm.
Notable Natives
  • Elizabeth Buffum Chace – anti-slavery and women's rights activist
  • Don Orsillo – commentator for the Boston Red Sox on New England Sports Network (NESN)
Local Slang
  • Sub: A hot sandwich known in some other places as a hero
  • Wicked: An adjective used instead of the word "very."
Points of Interest
  • Newport
  • Providence
  • Providence Performing Arts Center
  • Providence Place Mall
  • Roger Williams Park
  • WaterFire
Shopping Centers
  • The Crossing at Smithfield
  • Emerald Square Mall
  • Lincoln Mall
  • Providence Place Mall
Movie Theaters
Cinemaworld Lincoln
622 George Washington Highway
(401) 333-8676
Movie Theaters
Providence Place Cinemas
10 Providence Place
(401) 270-4646
Major Sports Teams
  • Boston Bruins: NHL
  • Boston Celtics: NBA
  • Boston Red Sox: MLB
  • New England Patriots: NFL
Distances to Nearest Major Cities
  • Boston: : 1 hour
  • Providence, R.I.: : 25 minutes

Student Polls

Rate the local atmosphere on the following topics    Based on 61 responses

Very poor
  • Cost of living
  • Dining
  • Friendliness of locals toward students
  • Museums/cultural attractions
  • Nightlife
  • Parking
  • Parks and recreation
  • Professional sports
  • Safety
  • Scenery
  • Shopping
  • Transportation

What is the local atmosphere like at your school?    Based on 55 responses

  • 7% City living at its finest. There's always something fun and interesting going on.
  • 15% Vibrant college town. There's no big city, but there are plenty of things to do off campus.
  • 31% Small town with plenty of charm.
  • 20% In or near a big city, but there's not much to do off campus.
  • 27% Painfully remote.

What is the proximity to other universities? Is there much interaction?    Based on 55 responses

  • 31% There are nearby schools that students often interact with.
  • 55% There are nearby schools, but students do NOT interact much.
  • 15% There aren't any nearby schools.

Can you see yourself living here after graduation?    Based on 54 responses

  • 11% Totally.
  • 43% Maybe, if I could find a good job.
  • 46% No way.


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