Frequently Asked Questions
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What happens when a student submits an inquiry to Smith Precollege Programs?
When you submit the inquiry form, you will receive a confirmation email, and we will mail a brochure to the address you've provided.
Who is eligible to apply?
High school girls entering grades 9–12 in the fall of 2014 are eligible to apply.
Is this program only for high school girls?
When should I apply?
Please apply as soon as possible. You may call or write us if you have any questions regarding application deadlines.
I am an international student. May I apply?
Yes! Students from all over the world have participated in Smith Precollege Programs. The programs have been attended by young women from China, Greece, Iraq, Russia, Senegal, Switzerland, Turkey and many other countries!
Is there an application fee?
Yes, the application fee is $35. The fee is nonrefundable and payable by check or credit card.
Do you offer financial aid?
We offer financial aid awards to students who demonstrate need on a case-by-case basis. We do not offer any merit-based aid.
When will I know if I am accepted?
In general, we review completed applications and respond to you within a few weeks. Please feel free to contact our office to ensure that your application is complete.
How much subject background do I need?
The critical factor in attending a precollege program at Smith is that you are motivated and interested in learning about the subject. There is a place for everybody—from the beginner to the very advanced.
Will I receive credit for summer programs?
No—and you don't get grades, either. We believe that students learn more in an environment where there are no pressures; they learn because they are interested.
Who will be teaching the classes?
Smith College faculty will teach the classes. Smith students will act as teaching assistants.
Do we have homework?
In general, no—with the exception of small reading assignments and preparation for final projects.
Do we have tests?
No. Tests are not given in any classes.
If I am interested in applying to Smith, what can I do while I am there?
Students are encouraged to set up an interview with our Office of Admission. Students who are interested in applying to Smith are encouraged to chat with their teaching assistants about their Smith experiences. At the student's request, faculty can complete an evaluation for each student.
What to Bring
What should I bring?
Some programs may have specific requirements, but all students should bring the following:
- Your laptop, if you wish; the Smith campus is entirely wireless
- Pocket money
- Quarters for laundry
Do I need a laptop to participate in Summer at Smith?
No, students will have access to many facilities on campus where computers are available.
Should I bring money?
Students may bring as much money as they need. All of your meals and transportation are taken care of, but if you want an extra treat, souvenir or other entertainment, you will need pocket money.
Can I bring my car?
No, students are not allowed to bring cars.
Living at Smith
Will I live on campus?
Yes! You will get a taste of college life while living in houses at Smith. Smith houses are equipped with kitchenettes, living rooms and laundry rooms.
Will I have a roommate?
Yes! It is possible that you will room with another student from across the country or the world. We also mix students from other programs, so if you are participating in the Young Women's Writing Workshop, you may room with a student from Field Studies for Sustainable Futures.
Can I request a roommate?
Yes, we will do our best to honor requests as long as both students make the same request.
Where will I be eating while in the program?
Enjoy three meals a day in a designated Smith dining hall. You can also walk to downtown Northampton after class and are welcome to explore the multitude of eateries.
I live near Smith—may I commute?
Smith summer programs are residential, and there are no commuters. Living away from home with your friends in the program is a great learning experience (plus it is lots of fun). We don't want you to miss out on this experience by going home after classes.
What if I get homesick?
We expect that some participants will feel homesick. When you arrive at Smith on that first Sunday, you'll see right away that our staff is prepared to help you. We'll greet you, assist you in settling into your room, give you a tour of the campus, sit with you over dinner in the house dining room and introduce you to lots of new friends. The next morning, we will escort you to your first class, and you'll be on your way! Most importantly, the summer program staff will be there to listen at any time.
What is the weather like in Northampton?
New England weather is unpredictable. It is recommended that you bring clothes suitable for cool nights and hot days.
Can friends and relatives come visit me while I am at Smith?
Except for emergencies, we have a strict no-visitors policy. Family members and friends are welcome to come for the final days of the program to hear student presentations and attend the final luncheon.
Can I receive mail while in the program?
Yes. It will be delivered to the houses as we receive it. The Office of Nondegree Programs is not responsible for any lost mail nor the tracking of mail. We will not assist in the sending of mail or returning of packages. Please keep in mind that all mail is delivered first to a central processing center so there will be an extra two to three days added to your expected time of delivery.
What are the times classes are in session?
Academic classes begin at 9:00 a.m. and conclude at 4:00 p.m. Students can hang out with other students in the houses, participate in house activities that residential assistants have set up, or go exploring in downtown Northampton.
What do students do besides attend classes?
In your free time you can use all of the campus facilities (sports and fitness, the museum, libraries, gardens, etc.), and go on field trips (music, theater, canopy zip lining!) for afternoons, evenings and weekends. There is always an organized activity to join—or you can spend time with your friends from the program. Each program will plan some of its own activities outside of the classroom, but we also plan activities that all summer high school students will want to participate in.