I am Smith

Jennifer Beltran Gastelum

Jennifer Beltran Gastelum ’22
About Jennifer

Class of 2022

Phoenix, Arizona

Environmental Science and Policy

Intern, First Gen Out Loud

Presidential Innovation Grant Recipient

Co-Chair, CLIFS (Community for Low-Income and First-Gen Students)

Student Liaison, Environmental Science & Policy Department

Scholarship Recipient

Why did you want to attend Smith?
Ultimately, I chose Smith because it felt like a true community. Even beyond the Grécourt Gates, Northampton as a whole is a welcoming, lively and a beautiful place to live. Location was a major factor for me, but there were so many other draws. The open curriculum gave me time to explore my passions and pursue a transdisciplinary education. The financial aid was a lifesaver. The alumni network was strong and dedicated to my success.

What has financial aid meant to you and your family?
It was a dream come true when we learned Smith was giving me such a generous financial aid award. It meant I was able to get an education without burdening my parents or adding to the stress of having a child move across the country. Smith’s financial aid gave me a shot at a future.

What is your favorite thing about Smith?
How dedicated the faculty, staff and alumni are to every individual’s success. I feel confident when reaching out for extra help, and I know there are resources available to help me achieve my goals.

“Financial aid gives a life-changing opportunity to those who don’t traditionally have many opportunities.”

What are you studying?
I’m an environmental science and policy major. I’m interested in researching food systems and the socioeconomic outcomes of smallholder farmers. This is a new interest, but I’m grateful Smith gives me the space to explore my curiosity. This fall, I’ll be taking an independent study course to flesh out my research and apply to graduate schools.

Why should donors support financial aid?
When you support financial aid, you’re ensuring the future has the best leaders, authors, educators, artists and so much more. Financial aid gives a life-changing opportunity to those who don’t traditionally have many opportunities. These are students and families who are forever grateful for the chance to learn and make a difference in the world.


Contact Us

To make an endowed gift or to learn more about supporting financial aid at Smith, please contact Betsy Carpenter ’93, associate vice president for development, at 413-585-2052 or ewcarpen@smith.edu.