Read Smith’s plans for the fall 2021 semester.
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Theme for 2020–22: Connectivity
This academic year at Smith is one unlike any other. The vast majority of our students are away from campus, learning in remote environments, both across the US and across the world. When COVID-19 shut down our campus in the Spring of 2020, many of us thought this would be a brief break from daily life and all would return to normal soon, but instead, this has become a sustained experience for our community. During the 20-21 academic year, we plan to use connectivity as our guiding principle in our Sherrerd Center programming. With trauma from the global pandemic, the continuation of brutal racial injustices in the US, and a contentious US election cycle all coalescing, it is arguably more important than ever to feel connected to our community – and yet, it has never been harder. In the work that we do at the Sherrerd Center for teaching and learning, we hope to center anti-racism, teaching in and amidst trauma, and the best inclusive practices in the remote classroom so that we can remain connected: to our core mission, and to each other in the Smith community.
Sherrerd Center Director
Sara Pruss, Professor of Geosciences, was appointed to a three-year term as the next Director of the Sherrerd Center for Teaching & Learning in summer of 2019.
A member of the Sherrerd Advisory Board and a past Sherrerd Teaching Award recipient herself, Sara has been on the Smith faculty since 2007 and has taught courses that straddle the geosciences and biosciences disciplines. Some of her most intensive teaching happens when she takes students into the field, often to remote areas, where they experience hands-on geological field work. As faculty director of the AEMES Programs from 2014-16, she worked closely with the AEMES team and mentoring coordinator to develop and refine programming aimed at recruiting and retaining students from diverse backgrounds in STEM disciplines. The Sherrerd Center’s emphasis on inclusive teaching is work she continues to propel as its Director.