Meet the Majors

Juliet Schulman-Hall ’22

English, Poetry Concentration

About Juliet

Class of 2022

Hometown: Brooklyn, NY

English, Poetry Concentration

Minor: Sociology, Concentration: Poetry

Formerly: HONS of Park House; More recently: Off-campus

Describe your major—completely incorrectly.

What do you see as a potential future dream job or career?
Anything involving storytelling. The dream would be to work in publishing, at The Atlantic or The New Yorker doing long-form journalism, or at an investigative newsroom like the ProPublica, the Boston Globe, Tampa Bay Times, The Washington Post, etc.

What’s a concentration and why did you choose one that focused on poetry?
A concentration is like a minor except it culminates in a project and goes beyond academic experiences—into practical experiences. I chose to have a poetry concentration because I have always been interested in writing and learning more about poetry. My first semester at Smith, I took “Reading Contemporary Poetry” which inspired me and made me want to hear from more poets!

Do you have a favorite poem or poet that you’d like to recommend (or one that particularly strikes you for some reason)?
I have so many, however, the one poem that has always inspired me and that I keep going back to is “Vulture & the Body” by Ada Limón. I remember her reading it my first semester and haven’t gotten it out of my head since.

If someone was considering a poetry concentration, what would you tell them?
You will never have a better time than now! Matt Donovan, the director of the Boutelle-Day Poetry Center, and Jen Blackburn, the program & outreach coordinator, are some of the most down-to-earth and supportive humans I know. They really look out for you and want the best for all of their students/concentrators. Smith is very unique in having a Poetry Center (and having so many renowned poets come to read/teach), I would definitely take the opportunity if you are interested! (You might also get to meet Matt’s pug, Gloria….)

Looking ahead to a decade (or two) from now, what’s something you’d like to have achieved?
I would love to have been published or have helped publish articles, essays, and poetry on undervalued or generally overlooked issues.

What’s one piece of advice you’d like to share about your time at Smith?
Figuring out your path takes time, don’t let that discourage you. Everyone around you is there to support you in all of your endeavors—lean on them!

The work I have done at Ms. helped make me bold and critical of the world around me—skills that I also have been taught at Smith!

Describe one moment with a professor that particularly sticks with you.
I have so many I can’t begin to cover them all—or touch upon only one moment with one professor! From going on hikes with my History professor and her beagle to meeting two of my professors’ pugs to pumpkin carving on the porch of my Study of Women and Gender professor’s house during the pandemic, to continuing monthly zoom calls with my English professor, who was at Smith only for a semester my sophomore year.

Where has been your favorite spot on campus to relax? What spot will you miss the most?
The bench next to Paradise Pond and the boathouse under the dawn redwood.

What’s one of your favorite Smith memories?
Ice skating on Paradise Pond at 8 am with my friends.

If another student was considering your major, what would you tell them?
Make sure you take classes with visiting professors! The professors have so much to offer and have taught some of my favorite classes at Smith.

What do you think has been the most “Smithie” thing you’ve done in life so far?
Worked for Ms. Magazine, a feminist magazine co-founded by Smith alum Gloria Steinem '56 and African-American feminist and child welfare advocate Dorothy Pitman Hughes! I have written 32 articles (both in print and online) for Ms. One article was breaking news and several have been written for a deadline that day. As an editorial fellow, I have had the opportunity to pitch, write, and edit pieces about topics that are meaningful and interesting to me. Some of these topics include energy and climate change, America’s health care system, and the criminal justice system.

In my pieces, I have interviewed politicians such as Congresswoman Maloney, former Virginia State Representative Jennifer Carroll Foy, Illinois Lieutenant Governor Juliana Stratton, Afghan refugees, reproductive rights activists, and others. The work I have done at Ms. helped make me bold and critical of the world around me—skills that I also have been taught at Smith!

Read more:

What Is Rightfully Hers: Women’s Land and Property Rights in East Africa
Two-Thirds of Alzheimer’s Patients Are Women, and Many Go Undiagnosed. Illinois Legislation Aims to Help Patients and Their Caregivers
Building a Future Without Youth Incarceration: “These Four Walls Aren’t the Answer”