Skip Navigation

Faculty Speaker Program

A close-up of a tea cup and a set table

Dedicated to bringing the best of Smith College to your hometown, the Office of Alumnae Relations Faculty Speakers Program is one of the most popular outreach programs. It has enabled Smith clubs and groups all around the world to engage with outstanding faculty, administrators, alumnae and students on a broad range of topics in a wide selection of disciplines. If you have questions, ideas or comments about the Faculty Speaker Program, please contact alumclub@smith.edu.

Planning Your Event

First, check with the OAR to see if Smith is already planning on bringing faculty to your area during the year. Keep in mind:

The OAR can only cover the expenses of faculty on the program list that you arrange through our office. Invitations made independently or outside of this list will not be reimbursed.

 

Requirements

  • Clubs may request one speaker per academic year.
  • The minimum attendance required to host a faculty speaker is 50 alumnae and guests.
  • The OAR will assist clubs with finding and confirming faculty speakers. Please contact the OAR—not the speaker—so arrangements and expenses are accounted for.

OAR Contact

The OAR will contact the faculty member with the initial invitation and potential dates. If the faculty member agrees, we will put the club event coordinator directly in touch with him or her to make final plans.

    Club Contact

    • All arrangements after initial contact are to be made between the speaker and the club/group.
    • It is the responsibility of the club to keep the speaker and the OAR informed about program plans.

    Expenses

    • The OAR covers round-trip air travel, ground transportation and overnight accommodations for speakers, provided that you have made arrangements through the OAR.
    • The club is responsible for making arrangements and for covering costs associated with the event, such as food and beverages, venue rental, audio-visual and invitations.

    Promotion

    The local club will promote the event, send out invitations (printed and/or electronic) and take RSVPs. We encourage clubs to contact other area clubs and affinity groups. Please send a copy of the invitation to the OAR and we can help send it out via broadcast email. We can provide a list of alumnae and mailing addresses for printed invites.

    Confirming Your Event

    • Send a confirmation letter/email to the faculty member.
    • Communicate event schedule to speaker and send a copy of the invitation.
    • Ask if the speaker requires any audio or visual equipment or a special set-up.
    • Ask how the speaker would like to be introduced and assign a volunteer to formally introduce the speaker to the audience.
    • Offer to transport the speaker to/from the airport or hotel to the event venue.
    • Send a thank-you letter following the presentation.

    Soliciting Feedback

    The OAR would like to receive feedback on your program. Please fill out the post-event evaluation form after the event and include a list of attendees.


    Information for Faculty

    The Faculty Speakers Program is one of the most popular OAR outreach programs. It has enabled Smith clubs and groups all over the world to engage with outstanding faculty, administrators, alumnae and students on a broad range of topics in a wide selection of disciplines. We thank all faculty members and administrators who travel to Smith clubs to give talks to alumnae.

    There are more than 100 Smith clubs throughout the world, and our program sends approximately 40 speakers a year to meet with them. Clubs range in membership size and level of activity, and events vary in format and scope, including luncheons, formal dinners, prospective student teas or tours of an exhibit or geographical area that falls within your expertise.

    Questions? Contact Nancy Streeter Howes, assistant director for Reunions, classes & clubs, at 800-526-2023, ext. 4.

    • Provide alumnae with an opportunity for intellectual stimulation and to connect with one another.
    • Promote good will and positive feelings about Smith by sharing academic expertise and information about what is going on at the campus.
    • Sustain and rekindle interest in the college.
    • Assist clubs with finding and confirming faculty speakers. Clubs are asked to contact the OAR—not the speaker—so arrangements and expenses are accounted for.
    • Contact the faculty with the initial invitation and potential dates. If the faculty agrees, we will put the club event coordinator directly in touch with the faculty member to make final plans.
    • Provide talking points that you, as an ambassador for Smith, can deliver to alumnae, prospective students and parents.

    The OAR can only cover the expenses of faculty on the program list that clubs arrange through our office. Invitations made independently or outside of this list will not be reimbursed.

    The OAR provides for round-trip air travel, ground transportation, meals and overnight accommodations for speakers. The faculty member needs to make his/her own reservations.

    If you need assistance with your travel arrangements, contact Easthampton Travel at 413-529-9599. Please let them know you are traveling as a faculty speaker for the OAR and they will bill us directly. 

    For more detailed information, please refer to the Smith College Travel and Entertainment Expense Policy on the Controller’s website.

    Please fill out the Post Event Evaluation Form. Also, you can submit your expense reimbursement report to the OAR, along with original receipts.


    Request a Faculty Speaker

    Please send in your request by August 30 for fall events, and by November 15 for events in the winter or spring.

    Contact

    Office of Alumnae Relations

    Alumnae House
    33 Elm Street
    Smith College
    Northampton, MA 01060

    Phone: 413-585-2058
    Email: alumclub@smith.edu