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Diary of a Smith First-Year

Only a couple of weeks after she took up residence at Smith, Aria Cabot ’06, an English major from Long Beach, California, lifted some lines from her diary and published them for all her hometown to see.

“I’ve only been here at Smith College a few weeks, and already I feel immersed in a completely different world,” she wrote in the daily Long Beach Press-Telegram. “My introduction to college has come and gone in a whirlwind of new activities, people, and experiences. I think I’m still high on the adrenaline.”

Cabot’s public ruminations are part of “College Diary,” a periodic column she has agreed to pen for the paper. Her September entry, headlined “No time to be homesick,” was her first in the series.

“College Diary” isn’t Cabot’s first experience as a columnist. As a senior at Poly High School, she belonged to a teen advisory group that met once a month with the Press-Telegram’s entertainment editor, Heather Wood, “to discuss various ‘teen issues,’” Cabot explains.

She also contributed a piece then for “Prom Diaries,” a weekly column in the Press-Telegram written by high-school students.

As Cabot prepared to depart Long Beach for Northampton late last summer, Wood asked her to write a regular column based on her college experience. “Of course I accepted,” says Cabot. She plans to submit pieces throughout the academic year -- perhaps once a month, she adds -- and may continue the column next year.
Cabot, who has written two columns so far, says her ideas are easy to come by. “I really do draw them from my personal diary,” she insists. “I try to be honest and avoid superficiality.”

Consider this excerpt: “I’ve eaten countless unidentifiable vegan dishes in the dining hall, and I’ve spent hundreds of dollars on books I’m not sure I’d read in my free time. I know I still have so much to learn…so much to do and so little time.”

Read Cabot's second column, published on October 25...

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