Community, Support & Mentoring
Disabled students come to Smith College from neighboring towns, across the nation, and around the globe, and bring unique strengths, talents, creativity and experiences that strengthen and enrich the diversity of the Smith academic and residential community.
The Office of Disability Services is deeply committed to fostering community and connections among students with disabilities where self-knowledge, understanding and peer support, mentoring, empowerment, and engagement around common challenges and solutions can blossom.
Advancing Student Success in Educational Transitions at Smith (ASSETS) provides structured support for entering students with disabilities that impact learning to smooth the initial transition from high school to college and to help them develop the independence, self-confidence and skills essential for academic success. For more information, see New Students.
Disabled Student Alliance
The Disabled Student Alliance is a student organization comprised of students with all types of disabilities that works to create community, promote visibility, and address ableism, particularly at its intersections with other social justice issues.
Peer Mentor Program Coordinator and ODS Project Manager Emma Cornwall is an alumna and a part-time ODS employee. She provides informal support for everything from navigating campus with a wheelchair, to connecting you to other resources on campus, to advice on how to talk to a professor about your accommodations, to what to discuss in your ODS meeting with Laura or Jeannette. Her office hours are Friday from 1-4 p.m. in College Hall 103, and she can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Peer Mentoring Program
The Peer Mentoring Program launched in 2013, in response to a history of disabled students expressing an interest in connecting with one another socially and academically.
The Peer Mentoring Program matches older students with disabilities to incoming disabled students in a mentor/mentee relationship. These older students provide support and advice to their mentees based on their own experiences navigating Smith with a disability. The Peer Mentoring Program hosts monthly mentor/mentee bonding events, an annual Disability Awareness Day event, and a special first-year orientation. Individual weekly meetings between mentor and mentee are encouraged.
Returning students with disabilities continue to volunteer to introduce new students to life at Smith. We hope to continue to increase the strength of our mentoring program by including more programming activities, offering ample social opportunities, and including you on our mentor/mentee list!
Be a Mentor
If you are interested in becoming a mentor, please fill out the peer mentor application. Mentoring entails weekly check-ins and attending monthly events with your mentee.
Have a Mentor
If you would like to have a mentor, please fill out the peer mentee application. We will work to match you with someone who fits your interests and disability concerns.