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About the Program

The Ada Comstock Scholars Program is named for Ada Louise Comstock, who graduated from Smith College in 1897 and served as dean from 1912 to 1923. From 1923 to 1943, she was president of Radcliffe College. Throughout her life, Ada Comstock demonstrated her commitment to the education of women.

Ada Comstock Scholars are a remarkable and diverse group of women. They range in age from their 20s to their mid-60s; some are single, some are married. They have come to Smith from all parts of the United States, including Alaska and Hawaii, and some from as far as Asia and Africa.

Earlier in their lives, their education was interrupted. Some chose to travel, seeking adventure; others began raising children. Many decided that school seemed less important than embarking on a career and being on their own. And for all of them there came a time, often years later, when they sensed an undefined and unfulfilled potential in themselves and began to wish to complete their education.

They have chosen to pursue bachelor of arts degrees at Smith College precisely because of the Ada Comstock Scholars Program. These women may be mature but unsure, intellectually able but yearning for more depth in their chosen academic areas. In any case, they recognize the need for a flexible academic environment. Each knows that after waiting so long, she wants the best.