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Learning & Development


Human Resources Learning & Development is committed to continuous learning that goes beyond training. We offer professional development programs that give you the opportunity to gain knowledge and skills so you can make the most of your career at Smith. We believe that your professional development is a shared responsibility and collaboration between you, your manager and Smith. We expect you to come to our programs with a readiness to learn and you can expect us to provide a rewarding, relevant learning experience.

We offer programs throughout the academic year designed for Smith administrators and staff. Programs will be listed as they become available.


All full-time and part-time staff and faculty at Smith along with the other Five Colleges are encouraged to enroll in these programs.


Registrations will be accepted throughout the semester on a space-available basis. Select your workshops, check with your supervisor and submit your registration in one of three ways:

Waitlist Policy

When a class is full, participants will be waitlisted in the order in which their registration was received. Participants are notified once space becomes available. If there is an adequate number of waitlisted participants, we will offer the class again as soon as feasible.


In order to better evaluate our professional development programs, we ask that you complete a Workshop Evaluation Form after attending one of the sessions. If you have questions, please contact Avril Russell in Human Resources at 413-585-2271 or email

Spring 2020 Learning & Development Offerings

Webinars Presented by e4Health:

To access the webinars, go to the Smith College Human Resources Benefits page and scroll down to “Employee Assistance” where there is a link to the e4Health sign in page. To access the webinars, sign into e4Health (you may use “Smith College” as the username and “guest” as the password). Once signed in, go to the Upcoming Events section to sign up.

Essential Skills

Web Tools

Are you interested in moving beyond the basic functionality to edit, organize and share your Google Docs in Drive? In this workshop, we will cover advanced features that help users create interesting documents while working efficiently. Topics include advanced Docs formatting and content options, making the most of comments & suggestions, versioning, the nuances of My Drive versus Shared drives. In the first hour of the workshop, we will present the advanced topics. In the last 30 minutes of the workshop, you will have the opportunity to apply some of these techniques during hands-on activities.

Presented by Peggy Pryor, Training & Outreach Manager, ITS

Date & Time: Tuesday, March 10, 10 - 11:30 a.m.
Campus Center Room 205

Since the college migrated to 25Live Pro in November, you may have adjusted to the changes, but perhaps some things are still confusing. Most of the features that were important in the “old” 25Live, such as starring your favorite items/events, finding your events/requests, and looking at the location’s availability grid to see when it’s available, are even more important now than before. This demonstration will review some of the ways you move around in Pro and the changes in the Event Form, highlighting some tips you can use to make this easier.

Presented by Kathy San Antonio

Date & Time: Wednesday, March 25, 1:30 - 3 p.m. 
Campus Center Room 205

Service Excellence

Problem Solving & Decision Making


Professional Development

Learn about fundamental leadership skills, such as effective communication and delegating. Walk away with immediate tools, such as managing your resources and new relationships.

Presented by e4Health

Date & Time: Thursday, February 13, 10 - 11 a.m.
Campus Center Room 205

This introductory overview will cover the basic elements of project planning, common project terms, the role of the project manager and how to better ensure successful project completion.  This session will also describe the difference between project and strategic planning, SWOT analysis, how to avoid being a micromanager, and the one crucial element that best guarantees the success of both.  This session can provide information both for those new to project planning or those wanting a quick review of the basics.

Presented by e4Health

Date & Time: Thursday, March 5, 10 - 11 a.m.
Campus Center Room 205

Communication & Interpersonal Skills

Many of the difficult issues we face in the workplace can be traced to ineffective ways of working through the conflicts that naturally arise in our interactions with others at work.  Some avoid conflict at all costs; others fall into patterns like intimidation to get their way. In this workshop, we'll raise our self-awareness about our own conflict styles and learn about ways to use conflict as an opportunity to increase the level of communication occurring in the situation.  

Presented by Ombudsperson Michael Stephens

Date & Time: Wednesday, March 4, 10 to noon
Campus Center Room 205

Cultural Competency

Change Management

To access the webinars you can go to the Smith College Human Resources Benefits page and scroll down to the Employee Assistance section where there is a link to the E4Health sign in page. To access the webinars sign into E4Health (you may use “Smith College” as the username and “guest” as the password.) Once signed in, go to the Upcoming Events section, where there will be a list of webinars accessible to you, including these two webinars. 


Financial Wellness

There are many ways that we are exposed to the risk of our personal information being compromised, both electronically and in-person. Attend this session to learn more about trends in fraud, and to get tips on how to minimize the risk of having your identity stolen by managing personal information wisely and cautiously.

Presented by Cait Murray, UMassFive College Federal Credit Union

Date & Time: Thursday, January 30, 2 - 3 p.m.
Campus Center 102

This session will review the latest findings in Behavioral Finance and examine how they can influence financial decisions we make. We’ll consider the mental heuristics humans use when deciding among financial options, including: the Endowment Effect; Mental Accounting; Loss Aversion; Herd Following; Recency Bias; Overconfidence; the Benchmarking Effect, and Availability Bias, among others. Each of these “mental dispositions” can sabotage our financial efforts without or awareness of their influence.

A light lunch will be provided.

Presented by David Carboni, DKC Retirement Associates, LLC; CFP

Date & Time: Tuesday, February 11, Noon - 1:30 p.m.
Campus Center, 103/104

During this 1-½ hour workshop Mary Ellen will review checkpoints a savvy retirement investor makes to ensure they are prepared when markets fluctuate, and then offer steps to take to manage your money during uncertain times.. Bring your questions, both related to this topic and other general retirement plan questions. 

Feel free to bring your lunch.  Beverages and treats will be provided.

Presented by Mary Ellen Gordon, Voya 

Date & Time: Thursday, April 2, Noon – 1:30 p.m.
Campus Center, Carroll Room

Emotional Wellness

Ever wonder how the principle of happiness works? Start believing that your happiness is more connected to you and your behaviors more than any other circumstances. Learn simple yet powerful tips and start learning how to cultivate happiness within yourself.

To access the webinars, go to the Smith College Human Resources Benefits page and scroll down to “Employee Assistance” where there is a link to the e4Health sign in page. To access the webinars sign into E4Health (you may use “Smith College” as the username and “guest” as the password.) Once signed in, go to the Upcoming Events section to sign up.

We all want to come to work and be treated with kindness and respect. A kind workplace leads to reduce stress, increase morale, and better business outcomes. Discover methods of strengthening your civility muscle to enhance your level of kindness and respect in interpersonal relationships.

To access the webinars, go to the Smith College Human Resources Benefits page and scroll down to “Employee Assistance” for  a link to the e4Health sign in page. To access the webinars sign into E4Health (you may use “Smith College” as the username and “guest” as the password.) Once signed in, go to the Upcoming Events section to sign up.

The experience of stress is universal. This workshop will help you differentiate between the cause of your stress (stressor), and the physiological stress response, and offer effective strategies for addressing each. You will learn seven evidence-based techniques to help you manage stress and increase your sense of wellbeing. Finally, you will choose one strategy that you would like to practice, and think through how to incorporate it into your life.

Presented by Jessica Gifford, THRIVE

Date & Time: Tuesday, March 24th, 10 a.m. -12 p.m. 
Campus Center Room 103/104

In this two-hour workshop, we will explore bringing the basic practice of mindfulness into our work lives at Smith. Mindfulness is a stress management tool, but it can be quite a bit more than that. Learning to be more present and focused, more open to ourselves and others, and to bring our best self to each encounter we have --- these are among the benefits. Learn a simple and straightforward technique, and practice and discuss its applications during this interactive session.  If you've been curious about mindfulness, come give it a try!

Presented by Ombudsperson Michael Stephens

Date & Time: Wednesday, February 5th, 10-11 a.m. 
Campus Center Room 205

Physical Wellness


Being aware of personal safety is an important part of our survival. Our personal safety can be threatened in various ways, such as physically or financially. This training will present the four pillars of personal safety: awareness, knowledge, intuition/instincts, and strategy. 

To access the webinars, go to the Smith College Human Resources Benefits page and scroll down to “Employee Assistance” for  a link to the e4Health sign in page. To access the webinars sign into E4Health (you may use “Smith College” as the username and “guest” as the password.) Once signed in, go to the Upcoming Events section to sign up.

Learn 10 simple things you can do today to help reduce your environmental impact, save money, and live a happier, healthier life. Learn how to shop for ‘green’ organic foods in your town inexpensively, learn where foods come from and how to clean your home with safe cleaners vs. strong toxic chemicals like ammonia and bleach. 

Presented by Harvard Pilgrim

Date & Time: Wednesday, February 19th, 10-11 a.m. 
Campus Center Room 205

Getting adequate sleep is one of the most important things we can do to stay healthy, but many people don’t get enough. This seminar will cover general information and myths about sleep as well as how sleep affects you health and fitness goals. You will leave with practical, healthy sleep tips and relaxation techniques that can be used to get a better night’s sleep tonight. 

Presented by Harvard Pilgrim

Date & Time: Thursday, February 6th, 10-11 a.m. 
Campus Center 205

This self-defense workshop is designed to help give confidence and some basic techniques that may help in escaping an assault. 

Presented by Earl Brown, Campus Police Department

Date & Time: Tuesday, February 25th, 11 a.m.-12 p.m. 
Campus Center Room 205

In this four-hour training participants will learn how to perform CPR on adults, children, and infants. Participants will also learn the necessary actions to take if someone is in trouble until trained help arrives.  First Aid will cover the common ailments that you could encounter, including, choking. Whether you want the certification or just the skills to be ready to help someone in trouble, this training is for you. Participants should dress in casual attire and wear flat soled shoes or sneakers.

Presented by: John Shaw, a former Fire Chief and EMT, certified by the American Heart Association

Date & Time: Thursday, March 12th, 12:30 - 4:30 p.m. 
Campus Center Room 102

Enjoy a restorative break for your body and mind: soothe your neck, shoulders, and eyes; unlock your hips and back; and release stress. Then return to work with more energy, clarity and calm. No special exercise wear is required, but don't wear tight clothing or jeans that day. It is not necessary to come to every session. You can go to one session, or all; come and go as you please! Please bring a yoga mat, and a small blanket or towel if you wish, to each session.

Presented by Certified Exercise Coach Judy Messer

Date & Time: Wednesdays, starting January 22nd-April 15th (Excluding March 18th), Noon–1 p.m.
Berenson Leeds Dance Studio

Additional Resources

Smith College Technology Courses

Smith purchased a campus-wide license from, a premier provider of online technology training for Smith students, faculty and staff. The Lynda library of over 1,500 courses covers all learning levels for a vast array of software, including 3D, audio, business, design, development, photography, video and web applications. Don't miss this opportunity to learn a new skill or stay up-to-date with software you already know. To start learning what you want when you want, log on to the Smith Portal and click the link on the General Info tab.

Five Colleges

Five College Training and Development Collaborative

Faculty and staff have the opportunity to attend trainings and workshops offered by the other members of the Five College Collaborative. To enroll in programs offered at Amherst College and the University of Massachusetts Amherst, please follow the registration guidelines and procedures outlined on their learning and development websites. If you have any questions about these programs or how to register, please contact Kate Harrington at or call 413-585-2268.

Local Resources

The organizations represented below conduct training in the local area. Please note that the college does not screen or endorse these providers. Please visit their websites for more information.

SIS (Seminar Information Service, Inc.)

This site consolidates course schedules from many top workplace training providers, including SkillPath, Fred Pryor and Padgett-Thompson. The database is searchable by topic, date and location.

Employers Association of the Northeast (EANE)

EANE provides public seminars, workshops, briefings and webinars on an ongoing basis for member companies throughout Massachusetts, Connecticut and Vermont. As a member organization, Smith College receives an automatic 30 percent discount on most training and consulting services.

E4 Health

Your Employee Assistance Program (EAP) includes a comprehensive training website with online courses, articles, videos, quizzes and assessments. To log in to the website, register with the name Smith College (case sensitive) and password (guest). The site is voluntary and confidential.