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STEM at Smith

Engineering student in class

Four in ten students at Smith major in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM)—a rate at least double the national average for women. At the heart of Smith’s learning is active engagement, coupling innovative teaching with real opportunities for in-depth research. Journey inside the human mind, along the edges of volcanic craters or out among the stars and galaxies. Engage in the blossoming fields of statistics, operations research, biomathematics and information science.

STEM Concentrations

Concentrations give students a way to delve further into an area of interest by combining academic and practical experiences, such as research, internships and service learning.

Below are research labs that provided information for listing here:

Michael Barresi (BIO/NSC) | Lab Website | Developmental biology, neurogenesis, neuron-glia interactions

Reid Bertone-Johnson (LSS) | Lab Website | Parks, bicycles, bikes, alternative transportation, pop-up, tactical urbanism, urban design, Northampton

David Bickar (CHM/NSC/BCH) | Protein structure, neurochemistry, Parkinson’s Disease

Leslie-Ann Giddings (CHM/BCH) | Lab Website | Natural products chemistry, biosynthesis, enzymology, metagenomics, extreme environments, bioactive secondary metabolites

Alicia Grubb (CSC/SDS) | Personal Website | Requirements and software engineering, ethics, decision support

Andrew Guswa (EGR) | Hydrology, water, water resources, mathematical modeling

Mary Harrington (NSC/PSY) | Lab Website | Circadian rhythms, light

Virginia Hayssen (BIO/NSC) | Evolution of mammalian reproduction, pleiotropy, species descriptions

Nick Howe (CSC) | CS pageResearch | Handwriting recognition, document analysis, computer vision, machine learning, digital humanities

Laura Katz (BIO) | Lab Website | Genome evolution and biodiversity of eukaryotic microbes, bioinformatics

Katherine Kinnaird (CSC/SDS) | Personal Website | Music information retrieval, machine learning, cultural analytics, data science education

Courtney Lannert (PHY) | Computational physics, condensed matter, quantum physics, atomic physics

Jack Loveless (GEO) | Lab Website | Earthquakes, plate tectonics, natural disasters

Lisa Mangiamele (BIO/NSC) | Lab Website | Animal behavior, physiology, evolution of the nervous system

Sara Pruss (GEO) | Lab Website | Earth history, geobiology, ancient life and environments, paleontology

Joseph O'Rourke (CSC/MTH) | CS PageComputational geometry, philosophy of artificial intelligence, primarily academic-year research

Joyce Palmer-Fortune (PHY) | Thin films, electron microscopy, microstructure

Stylianos Scordilis (BCH/BIO) | Molecular physiology of exercise, sexual dimorphism of skeletal muscle and myogenesis

Ileana Streinu (CSC/MTH) | CS PageLab Website | Computational geometry, algorithms, rigidity theory, kinematics and robotics with applications in computational biology (biomolecular/protein flexibility and motion), materials (metamaterials), and crystallography

Will Williams (PHY) | Lab Website | Atomic physics, spectroscopy, testing fundamental theories

Rachel Wright (BIO) | Lab Website | Genomics, adaptation, stress response, climate change, coral reef, anemones, symbiosis

Faculty who work with student researchers can fill in their lab information here or email Annaliese Beery. This list is not yet complete!

From introductory classes to advanced seminars, Smith’s world-class professors—50 percent of whom are women—engage students in scholarship and research that is changing the way the world benefits from STEM. Classes draw on nearly all aspects of the human experience, including history, politics, economics and the arts. Generations of pioneering women have studied STEM at Smith and have gone on to rewarding careers in medicine, engineering, environmental consulting, public policy, applied research and more.

STEM Advising & Mentoring

Generations of pioneering women have studied STEM at Smith and have gone on to rewarding careers in medicine, engineering, environmental consulting, public policy, applied research and more. A major in science, technology, engineering or mathematics at Smith opens doors to a variety of graduate school and career options. Smith faculty and advisers at the Lazarus Center for Career Development can provide guidance and resources to help you explore professional opportunities, whether you are poised to graduate or are just beginning your college experience.

Research Centers & Resources

The Nature of Inquiry: Student Research at Smith

Smith offers many unique research opportunities to undergraduates in most academic disciplines, from the sciences to the humanities and the arts. The ways in which students can conduct research, beginning even in their first year, varies from assisting faculty with their research endeavors to participating in the Summer Research Fellows Program to initiating their own projects of inquiry.


Clark Science Center
Smith College
44 College Lane
Northampton, MA 01063
Phone: 413-585-3800
Fax: 413-585-3786

Faculty Director: Kevin Shea

Administrative Director: Tom Richardson

Administrative and departmental contacts