Read Smith’s UPDATED plans as of August 5, 2020,
for an entirely remote fall 2020 semester.
Amplify is a new initiative sponsored by the Wurtele Center that offers you an opportunity to gain the skills, coaching and platform you need to share your knowledge and perspectives with a public audience. It is a forum where you can take what you’re learning in an academic setting and use it to develop a public voice by experimenting with different media, including public writing, speaking, and art. Through Amplify’s events, workshops and one-on-one coaching and feedback, you’ll develop a piece that you’re proud to share with the world. Amplify culminates with a chance to submit your work to the Amplify Competition.
Fall 2020 Events
Amplify programming will include three virtual events this fall, where guest speakers and panelists will discuss key questions related to Public Voice. All Amplify events include a talk or discussion, followed by a 30-minute “Amplify Lounge” session, in which students can “mingle” virtually with guest speakers and ask questions in a less formal setting. Watch eDigest and the Smith Social Network for information on how to attend!
Amplify Panel: “Developing and Owning Your Public Voice”
Thursday, September 24, 8–9 p.m. EST
How can we know when and how to speak up publicly about issues that matter to us? We’ll be joined by Tanisha C. Ford (The Graduate Center, CUNY), scholar, writer and public speaker on the intersections of fashion, politics and social justice; and Tuck Woodstock, journalist and co-producer of the Gender Reveal podcast that amplifies the stories of trans and non-binary folks. Ford and Woodstock will reflect on how they decided to share their voice publicly, how they conquer self-doubt and the role of “expertise” in asserting a public voice.
Amplify Speaker: “The Public Voice ‘Tax’: An Evening Shereen Marisol Meraji"
Thursday, October 29, 8-8:45 p.m. EST
Join Shereen Marisol Meraji, the award-winning co-producer of the NPR podcast Code Switch (tagline: Race. In Your Face.), as she shares her experience as a journalist and engages in a conversation with Smith faculty members Carrie Baker, Samuel Ng, and Liz Pryor on the intersections of race, identity, and public voice.
Amplify Panel: “Public Voice Across Media: Speaking Out Against Climate Change”
Thursday, November 19, 7:30-9 p.m. EST
Join us for a conversation with three individuals speaking out about climate change, but through different media and from different professional standpoints. The panel will include artist Eve Mosher, who creates large-scale, interactive public projects examining the human relationship to the environment; Leah Stokes, assistant professor of political science and environmental studies at UCSB and frequent contributor to national news media; and Audrea Lim, a journalist who writes for several publications, including authoring the “Taking Heat” series for The Nation, which explores issues of climate justice.
Amplify-Affiliated Fall Courses
LOG 100 Valid and Invalid Reasoning: What Follows from What?
Jay Garfield, Theresa Helke, and Melissa Yates
ECON 150 Introductory Microeconomics
PSY 218 Cognitive Psychology
PHI 100 Thinking About Thinking
Theresa Helke and Jeff Ramsey
SPN 220 Contemporary Cultures in the Spanish Speaking World
IDP 146 Critical Perspectives on Entrepreneurship
EDC 232 The American Middle and High School
FYS 155 Housing In/Justice and Tiny House Dreams
See the Smith Course Search for more information.
These fall courses also include a significant unit, assignment or other thematic element in cultivating public voice:
FYS 19 Red Devil and Pink Ribbons: Representations and Refutations of Cancer
Evangeline M. Heiliger
MTH 353 Calderwood Seminar on Applied Algebraic Combinatorics and Mathematical Biology
Julianna S. Tymoczko
PSY 312 Calderwood Seminar on Psychology in the Public Square
HST 273 Fake News in American History
FYS 158 The History of the American Present
AMS 351 Journalism as Feminist Practice
Susan C. Faludi
Are you actively working on a public writing, public speaking or public art assignment for a class and looking for some coaching or direct feedback? Do you feel strongly about an issue and want to learn how best to speak out about it? Are you planning to submit a piece to the Amplify competition and want some feedback on your work?
Submit a Piece to the Amplify Competition
The Amplify Competition is an opportunity for Smith College students to share their knowledge, stories and perspectives in a public forum and an event to honor their efforts toward raising their voices to bring about positive change. The Amplify Competition specifically seeks to amplify students’ voices as they speak out about the issues that matter to them. The competition is open to all Smith students, and entries can be drawn from assignments completed for a course taken for credit or a piece developed outside of a student’s course work.
Students may enter submissions in three categories: Public Speaking, Public Writing, and Public Art. In the 2020–21 academic year, all submissions will be published on a consolidated Amplify website, which will be accessible only within the Smith College community.
Submissions will be entered to compete for prizes in each of the three categories, plus a “People’s Choice” Award. Prize winners will be announced in early March in a virtual announcement event.
- First Place (one each for Speaking, Writing, and Art): $1,000
- Second Place (one each for Speaking, Writing, and Art): $500
- People’s Choice: $250
Learn about criteria, key dates and deadlines, coaching opportunities and how to enter the competition.AMPLIFY COMPETITION 2020–21
Amplify Information Session
The Wurtele Center motto for its new Amplify program is: “There’s never been a better time to have your voice heard.” Want to learn more about this exciting new program? Watch this information session (please note that viewers can access this presentation on Zoom using their Smith login).