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Celebrating Faculty


Through leading research, scholarship and the arts, Smith faculty push boundaries with unprecedented ways of thinking and ideas, inspiring students to find their own voices and ask hard questions.

Geology Professor Sara Pruss and Lexie Leeser ’21 have made a discovery that could change prevailing wisdom about early animal life on Earth. In a paper just published in Science Advances, they present fossil evidence that suggests colonial animals known as bryozoans appeared approximately 30 million years earlier than previously reported. Read more here.

Psychology professor Mary Harrington explains how light influences our circadian rhythms. Read more here.

On NPR's All Things Considered, Smith Professor Lauren Duncan explains her theories about why the anti-gun protest movement was so delayed and so small after the recent incidents of gun violence in the United States, compared to the massive and immediate protests launched after the George Floyd killing. Read more here.

Activist, Black feminist and Smith Professor Loretta J. Ross is one of three women to share their personal stories about abortion with The New York Times. Read more here.

More faculty in the news can be found in the News Tracker section of Notes from Paradise.



“In my second year, I curated a student exhibition at the Cunningham center, and I emailed most of my professors inviting them to come see it. The exhibition was only up for an afternoon, and I didn’t quite expect them to stop by, but to my surprise, my advisors and three other professors who were teaching me at the time or had previously taught me all showed up. It was a lovely surprise and reminded me how most professors at Smith actually do care for your well-being and aspirations.”
—Mosa N. Molapo ’22, Art History and African Studies


The Sherrerd Teaching Prizes

The annual Kathleeen Compton Sherrerd ’54 and John F. Sherrerd Prizes for Distinguished Teaching were established in 2002 to recognize sustained and distinguished teaching by longtime faculty members, as well to as encourage younger faculty members whose demonstrated enthusiasm and excellence influences students and colleagues. Read more about the most recent prize winners.


Grants and Awards (March 3 - May 11, 2023)

Susannah Howe, 2023-24 ELATES Fellowship

Mike Kinsinger, Design of a Polymer Injection System, Instrumentation Laboratory Company d.b.a. Werfen

Kate Soper, Classical Commissioning Grant from Chamber Music America

Kate Soper, 2023-24 Rome Prize Winner, Fredric A. Juilliard/Walter Dambrosch Rome Prize

Patricia Cahn, Candice Price, and Julianna Tymoczko, 2023 Award for an Exemplary Program or Achievement in a Mathematics Department, American Mathematical Society

Lesley-Ann Giddings, CAREER: Characterization and Evolution of N-hydroxylase Biocatalysts: Solutions to Catalysis and Remediating Metal Pollution, National Science Foundation

Christen Mucher, New Directions Fellowship, Mellon Foundation

 Sharon Owino, GPR37, an underappreciated regulator of the Wnt pathway: relevance to enhancing regeneration following stroke, American Heart Association

 John Brady & Sarah Mazza, A Workshop to Share, Explore, Develop, and Evaluate Online Petrology Teaching Resources and Strategies in Varied and Evolving Geoscience Education Settings, National Science Foundation

 Steve Williams, Nasal-Throat Swab Testing for LF Using a Portable Real-Time PCR System, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

Steve Waksman, Recently published book, Live Music in America, named a finalist by the Association of American Publishers for the best book on Music and the Performing Arts, as part of 2023 Prose Awards.


New Members of the Smith Teaching Community

Welcome to the 2021–22 academic year. The following individuals joined the Smith College community as tenure-track professors.