Be A Bridge Leader
Being a Bridge Leader is an opportunity to really make a difference at Smith. Check in January for application informtion!
The list below includes some of the things we're looking for in potential leaders. Don't panic if you're not an expert in something (or in everything)—that's what the training is for—and returning Bridge leaders serve as great teachers and role models!
- Demonstrated leadership skills, initiative, accountability, motivation, and professionalism
- The ability to work as a team member
- The ability to adapt to new situations
- The ability to work under pressure
- Flexibility—the ability to adapt to change with ease and grace
- Proven troubleshooting and problem solving skills
- The ability to work with diverse populations
- Enthusiasm and a positive attitude
- The perspective of having been a Bridge participant or just a new student at Smith
Do we get paid to serve as Bridge leaders?
Yes, but most, if not all, students do it because they value the opportunity to give back to a program they absolutely love!
Bridge Leaders Reflect on Leadership
"Strong leadership is formed through honesty, trust, patience, the ability to stand up and speak your mind, and the ability to listen"
—Rachael Gainer '13
"The skill that I value the most in myself is my skill as a problem solver. I am very good at taking a situation that may be stressful to most and breaking it down, improvising when necessary and successfully resolving or completing the task. All these I consider important because leadership is nothing short from complicated. A good leader is constantly overcoming obstacles and dilemmas. Being a strong leader is always a work in progress, changing and improving."
—Mayra C. Jimenez '13
"As a Bridge Leader one must lead by example."
—Yanil Burgos '13
"For a great leader, it is just as necessary to know how and when to lead as to know how and when to follow. A leader doesn't want to lead people into an eternity of 'follower'-ship, but she wants to lead people into becoming their own leaders." —Morgyn-Britney Hall '13
"The most important is a combination of patience and the ability to listen. Being a leader means that even when things get rough you must find restraint within yourself. Listening is a skillthat enhances this ability, listening to those around you and listening to yourself. The thing about problems is that we usually know the solution but we have to stop and listen. I think those two characteristics are inherent to leadership and are learned with time and new experience... the hardest lesson I've had to learn in the past three years is to speak. How can people follow you if you don't have anything to say?"
—Keisha Cassel '13
Bridge Leader Position Descriptions
The Bridge house manager is responsible for the day-to-day operations of the Bridge Pre-Orientation program. The house manager will correspond with the assistant house manager the summer before Bridge training. The house manager maintains the workshop schedule, plans activities, and supervises special projects. In addition, the house manager ensures that participants are informed of house and Bridge rules and responds to situations of immediate need.
Assistant House Manager
The assistant house manager organizes transportation and room assignments, distributes and collects keys, and distributes evaluations. Additionally, the assistant house manager helps coordinate special projects, among other tasks.
Student Academic Liaison
The student academic liaison (SAL) facilitates the transition to academic life for Bridge participants. During Bridge, the SAL creates and facilitates one workshop session for the entire Bridge class to help participants transition to the academic rigor of Smith College. The SAL remains prominent through the academic year, serving as a peer liaison and linking Bridge participants to resources and academic support on campus, including collaborating with Student Academic Advisors.
Bridge Leaders are responsible for leading a workshop of their own design, supervising program participants in a residential setting, and working with fellow Bridge Leaders to create a fun and welcoming atmosphere for the new students. Bridge Leaders are the core of the program and are expected to attend all program activities and be available to assist Bridge participants. Additionally, they are encouraged to remain in contact with participants throughout the year.