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Community Support—Financial and In-Kind

The college recognizes the importance of making financial and in-kind donations to the community. Recent contributions to the city and local projects include: 

  • $550,000 from the Smith College Affordable Housing Fund to the Valley Community Development Corporation (CDC) for project development costs for the 96–98 King Street apartments
  • $536,000 in support of pedestrian safety improvements to Elm Street crosswalks
  • $300,000 donated over three years to the City of Northampton in unrestricted funds
  • $220,000 from the Smith College Affordable Housing Fund to the Valley CDC for project development costs for the 46–48 School Street apartments
  • $150,000 to Cooley Dickinson Hospital’s Building Our Future Campaign
  • $150,000 to support Sunnyside Childcare’s purchase of a new building
  • $124,000 contributed by Smith employees to the United Way of Hampshire County in 2016–17
  • $100,000 over four years to support public radio station WFCR in its capital campaign
  • $100,000 to the Northampton Community Arts Trust in support of the 33 Hawley Street project
  • $100,000 to the Valley CDC in support of Pleasant Street affordable housing
  • $100,000 to the City of Northampton as one-time support for the Northampton public schools
  • $100,000 to Cooley Dickinson Hospital in support of the Comprehensive Breast Center
  • $50,000 over five years to the Northampton Education Foundation
  • $50,000 over two years to support the Regional Chamber of Commerce
  • $36,000 over three years to support Valley Bike Share
  • $27,500 in annual membership and in-kind support of downtown Northampton’s Business Improvement District
  • $10,000 to the Academy of Music’s first capital campaign
  • $8,000 for repainting bike lanes on Elm Street
  • $5,000 to the City of Northampton to help with public safety (fire and police) costs in the wake of the 2009 arsons
  • $3,470 in donations, venue space and custodial services to the Northampton Center for the Arts for First Night Northampton
  • $3,000 to the CISA (Community Involved in Sustaining Agriculture) Emergency Farm Fund
  • $2,500 to the Northampton Neighbors Relief Fund set up by the United Way of Hampshire County to assist victims of 2009 arsons
  • $2,060 annual contribution to the Economic Development Council of Western Massachusetts
  • $1,300 in donations and venue space to the Northampton Arts Council for the Four Sundays in February series
  • $1,000 sponsor of the Paragon Awards, which recognize outstanding volunteers in the Northampton community
  • $600 sponsor of the Hot Chocolate Run for Safe Passage for victims of domestic violence
  • $500 to the Greater Northampton Chamber of Commerce in support of its Downtown Banner Program
  • $500 sponsor of the League of Women Voters’ statewide meetings on “Women’s Health in the 21st Century: What We Need to Know”
  • $500 for purchase of traffic signs for the State Street crosswalks located near the Smith College Campus School
  • Donated computer equipment to the James House Community Learning Center, Riverside Industries and Volunteers in Northampton Schools
  • Granted right-of-way on Hospital Hill property for Manhan Rail Trail spur, enabling cyclists and pedestrians contiguous access to Oleander Drive.
  • Donated household and office furniture to ServiceNet for their shelters
  • Created maps for the Friends of Northampton Trails and Greenways, Inc., “Exploring the Northampton Rail Trail Network” brochure
  • Donated perishable produce and dairy products to the Western Massachusetts Food Bank at the close of each semester
  • Provided professional meal preparation and delivery to the Cot Shelter immediately before the Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays to provide relief to the volunteers
  • Provided venue space at John M. Greene Hall for a performance by the Young@Heart chorus

Equipment

The college donated used computer equipment to area nonprofit organizations and municipal departments. From July 1, 2016, through June 30, 2017, the college donated 309 computer systems, 127 additional monitors,  7 printers, 13 projectors, one hard drive duplicator and an Eaton UPS system. The original purchase price of these totaled over $139,422. Donations of equipment were made to the Northampton School District, Northampton High School and Smith Vocational Agricultural High School and Northampton Public Schools, as well as other nonprofit organizations. 

Five College Bus

Smith contributes $92,916 (plus $33,800 from the Student Government Association) of the $626,110 given by the Five Colleges Consortium, in support of the PVTA (Pioneer Valley Transit Authority) and related bus service between Northampton, South Hadley and Amherst. The bus system, which carries more than a million passengers annually, also opens the Northampton housing market to University of Massachusetts students, thus helping to promote full use of the city’s rental housing.

Academy of Music

The president of Smith serves as an ex-officio member of the Academy of Music board of trustees and designates another member of the Smith community to serve on the board. Over the years, the college has contributed computer hardware and software to the academy as well as funds for renovating and upgrading this historic building.

WFCR/NEPR—88.5 FM

Through Five Colleges, Smith helps provide 24/7 (168 hours a week) music, information and cultural programming on New England Public Radio.

General Facilities

College facilities are available to external groups to host meetings, conferences or other events for a modest rental fee plus direct costs and insurance. Smith College also provides free use of its facilities to local public high schools for their graduation rehearsals and ceremonies including the Smith Vocational and Agricultural High School, Hampshire Regional High School, Northampton High School and the Collaborative for Educational Services. See the guidelines for use of college facilities by external organizations at the website above. 

Athletic Facilities

Local schools and community groups often use the Smith athletic facilities for practices or competitions. The Northampton High School indoor track, field hockey, tennis, softball and lacrosse teams and the Pioneer Valley Interscholastic Athletic Conference track league host events at Smith throughout the season. Smith Academy in Hatfield hosts field hockey games on the turf field. 

The Indoor Track and Tennis facility’s track is open daily from 6 to 8 a.m. from January to March for indoor walking for members of the community. 

Community members can purchase summer tennis passes to use the Smith courts. Faculty and student teachers provide sports instruction to local children in various sports throughout the year. Smith athletes celebrate National Girls and Women in Sport Day by offering a free sports and recreational clinic to children in the community.  In addition, Smith College will be the host site for the Girls on the Run event, which is a 5k race typically attracting over 300 girls ages 8–12 from the greater community.

Conference Center

The Smith College Conference Center is available for rental to the community for private and professional gatherings. Local businesses and residents use the center for weddings, conferences, receptions and memorial services. Overlooking Paradise Pond and offering flexible catering options (including Smith College Catering), the center is an attractive, convenient meeting and retreat venue for groups of all sizes. Please contact conferencecenter@smith.edu.

Libraries

Smith libraries hold more than 1.6 million items—books, periodicals, CDs, DVDs, music, manuscripts and more. The William Allan Neilson Library, the college’s main library for the humanities and social sciences, is closed for renovation until fall 2020. Young Library is currently serving as the campus hub for library services. The two branch libraries, the Werner Josten Performing Arts Library and the Hillyer Art Library for fine arts and architecture, are also open for use of online and print collections and for research assistance. Young Library houses Special Collections, consisting of the Mortimer Rare Book Collection, the Sophia Smith Collection (women’s history) and the College Archives. All libraries are open to the public, who may use most materials and computer databases on-site at no charge. Members of the Smith, Five College and Smith alumnae communities may borrow from the libraries with an authorized borrowing card. For a modest fee, library cards are also available to adult residents of Hampshire, Hampden and Franklin counties who may borrow books from selected Smith College Library collections.

Events

Community members are encouraged to attend lectures, films, poetry readings, concerts, vespers and interterm activities at Smith, most of which are free. Many concerts and plays are also open to the public for a modest fee.

This information is based on 2016–17 figures; it was updated in September 2017. Although we attempt to make this information as comprehensive as possible, there may still be some unintentional omissions. Please send comments or corrections to the Office of College Relations, Smith College, Northampton, MA 01063, 413-585-2170. Visit www.smith.edu/topics/explore-campus-northampton for more information.