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“I was drawn to hip hop first and foremost because the music excited me, but I was also drawn to the culture. Growing up as a Soviet girl in the Bronx during the Cold War…I was very much on the outside, on the margins of society—and so were the kids who were building hip hop.”

Smith alumna Stacy (Anastasia) Guerasseva ’97, author of the critically acclaimed business biography DEF JAM, INC., former editor in chief of Russell Simmons’ Oneworld magazine and a contributor at VIBE and Interview magazines, describing the success story behind Def Jam Records, on February 28.

“The media here had really lost interest in the earthquake….The United States in general was losing interest. When we started contacting the media outlets, it was a really hard sell.”

S. Asif Alam, president of the Association of Pakistani Professionals and a member of SAQUAKE.ORG (an alliance involved in earthquake relief efforts), spoke as a member of a panel on “Faultlines: Understanding the 2005 Earthquake in South Asia,” on February 13.

“If you as an individual investor decide to divest from, or not buy at all, a company’s stock [because of social or ethical issues], there is no stock market effect. The most important thing individuals can do is to write a letter, write the company, write the newspaper. Do something! Just don’t think that by not investing you are sending a clear message.”

Smith alumna and financier Cornelia Mendenhall Small ’66, chair of the board of trustee’s investment committee, discussed how individual investors can use their investments to speak for their principles as a member of a panel on “Socially Responsible Money: Why It Matters,” on March 2.

“College is expensive and colleges should not close the doors to recruiters if it means more students can afford going to that school. I was proud that there was a Marine Corps recruiter on campus a few weeks ago. It is good to remind Smithies that there is a war going on and that we should support our troops even if we may not agree with the reasoning behind the war.”

Air Force ROTC student Molly Miller ’07 was quoted in an article written by Olivia Carrano for the Smith College Sophian, “Military Recruiters Force College Gates Open After Court Ruling,” in the March 16 issue.

“Having written one good poem, I never assume I’ll write another.”

Gary Snyder, essayist, environmental activist, Buddhist and winner of the 1975 Pulitzer Prize for Poetry, gave a public reading of his poems sponsored by the Poetry Center and also gave a talk as part of the “Zen in America” lecture series on April 3 and 4.

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