Skip to main content

Smith Alumnae Quarterly


Shaping Sound and Time

At Smith, Elim Chan ’09 showed raw talent. Now she conducts some of the most prestigious orchestras.

  • SAQ
  • April 2, 2024
“I think, at times, individuals expect for you to solve all of their problems when some of the problems may not be city council at all, it may just be a private citizen’s issue. But when people have that trust in you, they see you as more than just a councilmember, they see you as an ally.”
Angelia Washington, M.S.W. ’03, on making history as the longest-serving female councilmember in Jacksonville, North Carolina, The Daily News, November 24, 2023

Capturing Global Encounters

Students’ award-winning photographs offer a glimpse into lives around the world.

A hillside of houses glimpsed through a scrim of barbed wire; the visual architecture of subway cars in motion; a crowd waiting to board a ferry across a river on the last night of Ramadan. These are among the winning images in the annual Global Encounters Photo Contest sponsored by the Lewis Global Studies Center. This year’s contest drew 70 submissions from Smith students of photos taken in 37 countries around the world. The visual encounters in cluded close-up images, views from afar, “aha! moments” of discovery, cultural juxtapositions, and scenes of daily life captured in locations ranging from Japan to Jerusalem. Judges for this year’s submissions were Charlene Shang Miller, educator for academic programs at the Smith College Museum of Art, and Fraser Stables, associate dean of integrative learning and professor of art. Here are the winning images.

“The spotlight is on women’s basketball and our players. It’s not shared with a men’s team. The resources here—our weight room is geared toward women. Our weights are for the grip of a woman’s hands. Our gym, we don’t share it with the men; we get to practice whenever we want when the times work within our team schedules. Everything is geared toward giving our female athletes the best experience possible.”
Lynn Hersey, head basketball coach, The Boston Globe, January 16, 2024

Smithie Lives

A Doggone Good Time in Western Massachusetts

Dawn Smith ’77 has been an animal lover for as long as she can remember. At 5, after some begging, she got her first dog—a collie named Lassie—who was later joined by a cocker spaniel mix named Pixie. Since the 1990s, Dawn has been participating in American Kennel Club field trials with field-bred English cocker spaniels, including her 9-year-old dog, Toula (pictured). “Toula is a sweet and affectionate dog, and at the same time is very fast and animated in the field,” says Dawn, who’s also the proud dog parent of Squeak (5), Rosie (4), and Hank (1).

Photographed by Lynne Graves on January 30, 2024, at the Southampton Wildlife Management Area in Massachusetts, where Dawn regularly goes to train her dogs.

Read More Class Notes

Make a Submission

Have something to share for the next issue of the Quarterly? Update your information, submit a class note, report an alum death, and more. We love to hear from you!

Submit something.

Change in Obituary Policy

The Quarterly recently revised its obituary policy. Beginning with the Summer 2024 issue, the magazine will continue publishing a comprehensive “In Memoriam” listing of deceased alums but will no longer print 100-word obituaries. The reasons for this change are addressed here.

Q: Will the names of deceased alums still be listed in the magazine?
A: Yes. The “In Memoriam” listing of deceased alums and faculty members will continue to appear in each issue of the magazine. You can view a recent example of the list in the online version of the magazine. There is also a section of specifically dedicated to obituaries of deceased Smith alums and other members of the Smith community, populated with notices published by a host of major newspapers. 

Q: What’s the reasoning behind eliminating 100-word obituaries?
A: Over the years, many readers, including family members of deceased alums, have expressed concerns about the fairness of the magazine’s obituary policy. They wondered why some alums are memorialized with 100-word obituaries while others are not. Magazine staff did not write these obituaries but instead published submissions from family members and friends of deceased alums. Recent data shows that only 20% of deceased alums—one in five—received an obituary in the magazine. Moreover, individuals were often frustrated by the magazine’s 100-word limit as well as the often long delay in printing obituaries because of our quarterly production schedule. We believe that running the “In Memoriam” list is the most appropriate and equitable way to recognize our deceased alums.

Q: Why is the magazine changing this policy now?
A: With the Summer 2024 issue, the magazine will debut a top-to-bottom redesign. It represents the first time the magazine has been redesigned in decades. Ceasing the publication of 100-word obituaries has been a topic of discussion for some time, but the decision to do so in tandem with the magazine’s redesign felt most appropriate. Celebrating the lives and accomplishments of our alums will continue to be the heart of the magazine’s mission.

Q: Can I still report the death of an alum?
A: Yes. The Smith College Office of Alumnae Relations accepts and fact-checks death notices from family members and friends of deceased alums. To report a death, use our web form or email the records department directly at

Q: How else can alums honor deceased classmates?
A: Alums are welcome to submit a class note with a short reflection or memory of a deceased classmate or family member for possible inclusion in the magazine. (Please note, full obituaries will not be published in the class notes section.) We encourage class officers to publish classmates’ obituaries on Smith-hosted websites. And alums can find Smithie obituaries on the Smith community page of Please be assured that the decision to run only the “In Memoriam” listing in the magazine was made after much thoughtful reflection and in the best interest of our readers.

Issue Archive

Scroll down and click on the cover of your choice, and click again to open the flipbook. For additional instructions, refer to the How to Use Our Digital Edition PDF. Mobile users: Visit the mobile site for the best experience.

Past Reads

Check out some articles from past issues of the Smith Alumnae Quarterly to see how members of the Smith community have been working to push the world forward.