The purpose of the Student Government Association is to listen to the student body, to create and maintain relations between the student body and the greater Smith community, and to advocate for student needs.
Every student is a member of the SGA, which is responsible for taking up campus issues and responding to student concerns. The SGA also acts as a liaison for students and organizations to the college's administration and the board of trustees, and allocates money to organizations and students for activities.
The SGA Cabinet refers pertinent issues to the Senate for legislation, and to the administration for policy resolution. The SGA Cabinet also works to ensure the financially stability of the SGA and allocates money to support events, groups, and individuals who are benefiting the Smith College community. Each class has a cabinet, which includes the class president, vice president, secretary, treasurer, historian and social chair. Class cabinets work together on class events and fundraisers. Cabinet members are elected in campus-wide and class-wide elections in the spring and fall.
Meetings for Fall 2020 will take place on Monday at 7 pm on Zoom.
Senior Class Cabinet
The Senior Class Cabinet remains in its position for five years post-graduation, and helps plan the first- and five-year reunions. They are responsible for organizing all senior class activities, including teas, pub crawls, wine and cheese socials, senior ball, and senior week. The senior class president also sits on the committees for Rally Day, Ivy Day and Commencement and is responsible for giving an address at Commencement. Advised by the Director of the Office of Student Engagement.
Junior Class Cabinet
The Junior Class Cabinet strives to connect those juniors who are abroad with those who have chosen to spend their year on campus at Smith. In conjunction with the Lazarus Center and OSE—which provide instructive workshops, seminars and lectures—the Junior Class Cabinet works hard to prepare for senior year and beyond. The Junior Class Cabinet looks forward to the return of their fellow students from their many exotic study-abroad locations, so they can be reunited for their final year at Smith. Advised by the Organization Advising and Finance Coordinator in the Office of Student Engagement.
Sophomore Class Cabinet
The Sophomore Class Cabinet is responsible for fostering class cohesion by planning events and other community-oriented activities. Previous events have included game nights, movie screenings, and hot chocolate and ice cream socials. Advised by the Organization Advising and Finance Coordinator in the Office of Student Engagement.
First-Year Class Cabinet
The First-Year Class Cabinet organizes events for the first-year class. The first-year class president remains in that position for the following academic year until the incoming class elects a president of its own. Advised by the Assistant Dean of Students, Director of the First-Year Experience.
Ada Class Cabinet
The Ada Class Cabinet advocates for Ada Comstock Scholars' needs on and off campus, organizes social activities for Adas (and their families when possible). The Ada President and Ada Coordinator also sit on the Ada Stakeholders Committee with members of the administration. Overall, the Ada Cabinet serves to connect the Ada Class, the rest of the Smith student body, and the administration.
The student senate provides an open space for anyone to come with ideas and concerns about the Smith community. As a governing body for Smith, they aim to be transparent, effective and efficient with every decision they make. Senators are responsible for approving the charters of new student organizations, as well as overseeing the bylaws and guidelines of various SGA committees and groups. They have the opportunity to sit on issue-based committees, with interests ranging from dining to disability services.
Meetings: Thursdays at 7 p.m., Campus Center, Carroll Room
There are numerous ways to get involved on campus. Each house offers a variety of possibilities for students to get involved and participate in house council activities under the umbrella of the SGA.
Have an idea of an organization at Smith that would have lasting relavance to the community? Is there enough student interest to support such an organization? How do you get an organization started at Smith College? The SGA Rule Committee and ORC can help.
Submit a Proposal
- Gage interst amoung your peers. Start a list of interested members for your organization. If the list is greater than 10 people, you can start the process of chartering of recognizing your organization.
- Decide if you want to charter or recognize your organization. The difference between these two types of student organizations is further explained on the SGA Website under “Rules Committee”.
- A recognized organization is able to have a Smith email address, have space on the Smith Student Social Network, reserve space in campus buildings, and use campus vans for transportation.
- A chartered organization has all of the same resources as a recognized organization. In addition, a chartered organization is able to submit funding requests to the ORC or events, projects, supplies and equipment.
- Start a charter for your organization using the sample charter provided. We encourage building off of the current format and not taking away any of the pieces currently in the sample format. In the charter you must:
- Fill out organization name and information where it says ‘xxx’
- Describe the goals and purpose of the organization
- Describe the frequency of meetings and specifically what will occur during meetings
- Choose to be funded or not funded by the ORC (recognized or chartered)
- Choose a nondiscrimination policy (will you allow 5 College Students to join)
- Here is a video on how to fill out a sample charter
- Schedule a meeting with the Rules Committee Co-Chairs. They will offer advice, explain the chartering process, and answer any questions about the charter that still remain or pertain to your student organization. Here is a calendly link to schedule a meeting: https://calendly.com/sgarules/officehours
- Share your charter Google Doc with the Rules Committee for review . The Rules Committee will help you revise your charter, so that you can be approved. If you want to be a recognized organization, you are now done with the process and are now officially recognized by Smith College. Congrats! Once approved, the Office of Student Engagement will be in touch about filling out recognition forms.
- If you are looking to be chartered, you will be scheduled to attend a hearing at a SGA Senate meeting; this is your opportunity to present and defend your charter. You can set up an additional appointment with the Cochairs of rules committee to go over your presentation and answer any last questions about chartering, the hearing, and the process.
- The week after your hearing, the senate will vote on your student organization. Once approved, the Office of Student Engagement will be in touch about filling out recognition forms.
Fall 2020 Election Timeline
Registration: September 7-11
Campaigning: September 14-22
Voting Day: September 23
Results: September 23
All questions about the elections should be directed to the SGA Elections and Appointments Chair.
Fall 2020 Election and Appointments
The various responsibilities of SGA committees include organizing class events, appointing students to SGA committees, upholding the Academic Honor Code and the Smith College Code of Conduct, overseeing the student activities fee, and addressing academic and nonacademic concerns on campus.
The Academic Honor Board oversees that every student upholds the Smith College Academic Honor Code. They hear cases of infractions of the code and vote on sanctions, ranging anywhere from a warning to expulsion. The board is busiest when the student body returns to school in September and February, as most violations are reported during finals and the reading period.
Join the Honor Board
The Honor Board selects class representatives every spring for open vacancies. All class representatives are selected through an application and interview process, and have tenure until their graduating year. See the Elections and Appointments Committee section for more information.
Honor Board Secretary
The Honor Board secretary is elected every year by the general student body in the campus-wide spring election and must be a rising junior. Because the secretary is promoted to chair in the following year, please note that this is a two-year commitment; a student interested in this position may not go abroad. To apply for secretary, register with the Elections and Appointments Committee.
Please contact the Academic Honor Board Chair with any questions or concerns.
The College Conduct Board ensures students at Smith College uphold the standards for student ethics and conduct outlined in the Smith College Student Handbook. The board hears cases of alleged infractions of nonacademic rules and makes decisions about the outcomes of cases.
The board comprises 16 students who hear cases in teams of five members constituting a hearing board. Every board is assisted by an adviser who is a member of the student affairs staff.
Code of Social Conduct
The Conduct Board uses the code of social conduct and policies of the college to evaluate cases.
Students should be familiar with the examples cited in the Pohibited Conduct section, but should also be aware that this list does not constitute an exhaustive or complete list of prohibited conduct.
The Curriculum Committee serves as a resource for academic representatives, department liaisons and the student body (both traditional and nontraditional students) informed of curriculum concerns and changes.
The committee publishes ASPECTS, assists the administration with the college's mandatory faculty teaching evaluations and holds forums to discuss timely educational policy issues.
The SGA Faculty Teaching Award is an opportunity for students to recognize professors who have had a positive impact on their time at Smith. The most compelling recommendations are those that are detailed and thoughtful.
The SGA Curriculum Committee chose two recipients this year, one tenured and one non-tenured. Awards were presented at Rally Day.
The recipients of the 2020 Teaching Awards are:
Tenured: Steven Williams, Biology
Non-tenured: Albert Y. Kim, Staistics & Data Science
The Gavel Awards have been administered by the SGA since 1985 and are given annally to two staff members, one service staff and one administrative staff member, as a token of appreciation for the many ways in which staff members affect the lives of Smith Students. The awards were presented at Rally Day.
The 2020 recipients of the Gavel Awards are:
Valerie Joseph, Mentoring Program Coordinator
Paula Pawloski, Housekeeping
Please contact the Curriculum Committee Chair with any questions or concerns.
The Elections and Appointments Committee (E&A) organizes and runs the all-college and class elections. It runs the voting site and monitors the candidates.
In addition, E&A interviews and appoints students to various college committees. The elections and committee appointments are held in the fall and spring semesters each year. The chair is elected in an all-campus election, and the rest of the members are elected through the senate.
Academic Honor Board Class Representatives
The Honor Board selects class representatives every spring for open vacancies. All class representatives are selected through an application and interview process, and have tenure until their graduating year.
Advisory Board for the Resource Center on Gender and Sexuality
Contact: Alison Schoen, Student Prgorams Coordinator
The resource center provides a space for many different communities at Smith to come together. This board is looking for students who would like to see the space foster more of a queer community as well as foster more activism here at Smith. The board is very interested in supporting the queer organizations on campus as well as forwarding and expanding Smith discussions on diversity.
Bookstore Advisory Committee
Contact: Matt Motyka, Controller
The Bookstore Advisory Committee deals with issues regarding the Smith College bookstore. Student representatives will engage in conversation with the bookstore management team along with other members of the administration and faculty. Through this committee, students will learn more about the bookstore industry and its constituent roles and responsibilities. The committee meets two times per a semester.
College Council on Community Policy
Contact: Michael Ireland, Associate Direcotr Student Financial Services
The Smith College Council on Community Policy is a broadly representative, deliberative group that meets to consider issues of common concern to the campus community. Its mission involves promoting the well being of the community, its capacity for collegiality and the pursuit of its general welfare while providing an excellent education to women. The committee is made up of a broad range of faculty and staff members. The committee meets once a month.
Committee on Missions and Priorities (CMP)
Contact: Elena Palladino, Secretary of the Board of Trustees and Assistant to the President
The Committee on Mission and Priorities is made up of two student representatives and members of the faculty and administration who advise the president on strategic, financial, human and physical resource planning for the college's next decade. The committee solicits, generates and reviews proposals for major projects and initiatives; assesses progress in achieving the goals of current initiatives; and recommends priorities for the allocation and reallocation of resources. The committee meets regularly with the Committee on Academic Priorities, the Advisory Committee on Resource Allocation and the appropriate committees of the board of trustees to both inform the work of those committees and to be informed by them. Periodically the CMP reports its findings and recommendations to the Smith community at large. Meetings are generally held once a month on Wednesday or Thursday afternoons. Two students (a junior and a senior) serve on the committee, each with staggered terms of two years. Time commitment: two years. Only rising juniors are eligible to apply.
The Curriculum Committee is responsible for keeping the student Senate and the campus at large informed of curriculum concerns and changes. The committee assists the administration with the college's mandatory faculty teaching evaluations and holds forums to discuss timely educational policy issues. The Curriculum Committee serves as a resource for academic representatives, department liaisons, and the student body at large, traditional and non-traditional aged students alike.
Library Advisory Committee
Contact: Susan Fliss, Dean of Libraries
The Committee shall review the Library operating budget, cadpital budget requests, space, staffing, long-range planning, and other Library matters. The Committee may make recommendations on these matters to the Provost and Dean of the Faculty. It shall consider the way in which the Library's policies and practices can best meet the curricular and scholarly needs of its users. The faculty members of the Committee shall have the responsibility of conveying to the Committee as a whole the faculty's concerns.
Organization Resources Committee
ORC consists of the chair, vice chair of chartering, vice chair of budgeting, SGA president, SGA treasurer and ten liaisons. The ORC chair, vice chair of chartering, and vice chair of budgeting are elected by the student body in April of each year. ORC's liaisons can either be elected through Senate or elected through the Elections and Appointments Committee in April of each year.
Serving on the ORC is a full-year commitment. Organization chairs, presidents or treasurers cannot serve on the board. The SGA president and SGA treasurer automatically sit on ORC.
Eight liaisons are appointed in the spring through Elections and Appointments. The Vice-Chair of Chartering will be elected in the spring through the Elections and Appointments Committee. Two members will be elected in the fall through senate.
Technology Steering Committee
Contact: Samantha Earp, Chief Information Officer and Vice President for Information Technology and Service
The Technology Steering Committee (TSC) is the senior governance group for technology issues at the college. The committee guides and advises Information Technology Services and senior management on strategic information technology matters. In collaboration with the CIO, the committee recommends IT priorities, policies and strategies. Throughout the year the committee will: evaluate, review, and recommend changes to IT policies; recommend annual technology investment priorities; provide guidance on the balance of central and departmental responsibilities for technology; monitor ITS plans to sustain the necessary capacity, security, and recoverability of the college's technology infrastructure; and review and make recommendations on new opportunities for Five College technology collaborations. The TSC is co-chaired by the provost and the vice president for Finance and Administration, and is staffed by the CIO.
Vendor Code of Conduct Advisory Committee
Smith College is committed to conducting its business affairs in a socially responsible manner consistent with its educational mission and commitment to diversity. To this end, this code of conduct is a working document to guide vendor and institutional purchasers of apparel. The vendor code is a work in progress and will be revised through an active participation in the Worker Rights Consortium (WRC) and the Fair Labor Association (FLA). Smith College recognizes eight cardinal principles as the basis for effective performance under this code of conduct: full public disclosure of factory addresses, commitment to fair wages, independent monitoring, freedom of association and collective bargaining, safe working conditions, no forced labor, no child labor, and women's rights. Smith College expects affiliated vendors and institutional purchasers to conduct their business in a manner consistent with these principles and to follow workplace standards that adhere to this code of conduct.
Please contact the Elections & Appointments Committee chair with any questions or concerns.
The House Presidents' Association (HPA) is composed of house presidents from all Smith houses that are self-governing. It is dedicated to improving the house community experience—a unique part of student life and a tradition specific to Smith. The HPA addresses both the fun and serious aspects of the Smith house community, representing its interests to the SGA and the college administration. The house presidents are elected by an all-house election in each house. The HPA elects its chair and vice chair.
For current house contact information, please visit the house page on the Smith Social Network.
Please contact the House Presidents' Association Chair with any questions or concerns.
The Organization Resources Committee's (ORC) allocates monies from the discretionary fund throughout the year as appropriate; assists organizations in the planning and execution of events; guides new organizations through the SGA chartering process; and works on long-term projects that address the concerns and interests of organizations.
The ORC has a commitment to diversity, social and leadership opportunities, student participation in the campus community, and student representation to the college administration and the Smith College Board of Trustees.
ORC Chair and Vice President of Finance
Vice Chair of Chartering
For a full list of organizations, please visit the Smith Social Network.
Join the ORC
Serving on the ORC is a full-year commitment. Organization chairs, presidents or treasurers cannot serve on the board. The SGA President automatically sits on ORC. The Vice President of Finance also serves as the Chair of ORC.
Four liaisons are appointed in the spring through Elections and Appointments. The Vice-Chair of Chartering will be internally elected by the ORC in the fall. Two members will be elected in the fall through senate.
Contact the Elections and Appointments Chair for more details.
The Rules Committee is responsible for guiding new organizations through the SGA recognizing and chartering process. The committee advises organizations and provides sample charters and assistance with revising a new or existing organization’s charter. After advising, the Rules Committee votes on and provides feedback for an organization’s charter. To learn more about how to charter or recognize a student organization, visit the “Charter an Organization” tab above to get started.
Receive all the benefits of being a Smith College Organization, except for the ability to apply for funding from the Organization Resources Committee. Recognized organizations have their own email accounts, presence on the Smith Social Network, access to 25Live, a table at the Involvement Fair, and the ability to fundraise. After an organization’s first two semesters, Recognized Organizations are able to apply to become Chartered. Organizations hoping to become recognized do not have to present or be voted on by the Senate.
Receive all of the benefits of being a Smith College Organization, including the ability to apply for a full budget from the Organization Resource Committee after one year as a Chartered Organization. Organizations requesting to be Chartered must present in front of SGA Senate.
The Sustainability Committee is responsible for identifying and supervising the implementation of priority sustainable activities. It serves as the primary resource for organizations addressing issues of sustainability by maintaining open and functional channels of communication between those organizations, the SGA, and beyond the SGA to Smith administration as well as other parts of the Smith community. The committee organize principles for sustainability through sustainable developments in the interconnected domains of ecology, economics, politics, and culture.
- To facilitate conversation and collaboration among environmental organizations and representatives on campus.
- To foster an ongoing relationship between environmental organizations and the Student Government Association.
- To continually improve and innovate Smith College's sustainability efforts at the campus level and the institutional level.
Please contact the Sustainability Committee with any questions or concerns.
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There are two types of funding available for students through the SGA. The Conference Fund is allocated each year by the SGA Cabinet from the current SGA budget. This fund is to assist students attend conferences off campus.
The Sawyer Fund is an endowed fund for events held on the Smith College campus that are free and open to the community.
Fall 2020 Funding
Students applying for 2020–21 funding should use the 2020–21 Universal Conference Fund Application to apply for individual student conference funding and the Fall 2020 SGA Funding Application to apply for organization funding, organization conference funding and Sawyer Funding. Both forms are availabe under forms on the Smith Social Network.
Five College Funding
Additional funding can be found through Five College Funding for student events and lecture opportunities.
Chartered Organizations Funding
All chartered organizations can apply for ORC funds and Sawyer Fund on the same SGA Funding Applicaiton. You may apply to other sources of funding for the difference in what ORC has allocated.
Chartered organizations that would like to attend a conference as a part of the organization may apply for the Organizaiton Conference Funding, also on the SGA Funding Application. Organizations are limited to four students if the conference includes hotel accommodations and seven for day conferences where no overnight accommodations are necessary.
ORC funds come from the student activities fee.
These funding policies will help you and your oganization better manage the event planning process
ORC Discretionary Fund
Available to any SGA funded chartered organization. Its purpose is to cover qualified expenses throughout the year on a continual basis, at the ORC's discretion. Questions should be directed to the SGA VP of Finance.
ORC Equipment Fund
Available to any SGA chartered organization. Its purpose is to cover any one-time expenses for equipment associated with the functioning of that organization, as the ORC determines appropriate. "One-time" expenses can include those that are necessary every five years or more.
Apply for Funds
Log into the Smith Social Network to access the SGA Funding Application. No retroactive applications will be accepted.
Please Note: You must turn on your notifications in the Social Network as this is how Finance and ORC will contact you about your funding request.
Applications must be submitted by Monday at 5 p.m. to be heard the week they were submitted. Late applications will be saved for the next meeting.
The ORC and Finance Committee Chair (who also serves as the SGA VP of Finance) will present the request to the committees for review and will be available for consultation and assistance to students during the entire funding process.
Frequently Asked Questions
How long in advance should I submit the Universal Funding Application?
Applications for funding should be turned in, at a minimum, two weeks prior to the event.
When does the money allocated get transferred?
Money allocated from the discretionary/equipment fund application should be transferred by the end of the week as long as the event has been registered in the Smith Social Network..
May student organizations apply to the SGA funds?
All chartered organizations should apply to ORC first. They may apply to other sources of funding for the difference in what ORC has allocated.
What happens to the money that is not spent?
The money that isn't spent will go back to ORC in order to fund more student events.
What does "tabled" mean?
Tabled means that the committee was unable to make a decision on your request due to lack of information and will look at the application on the next meeting. Meanwhile, it is the responsibility of the organization to provide the requested information for ORC.
What should I do if I need funding for forks, napkins and utensils?
Forks, napkins and utensil expenses are included in the food allocation are funded according to ORC guidelines.
How long does it take for the allocated money to be on the org account?
Money transferred by the end of the week as long as the event has been registered in the Smith Social Network. Contact the Office of Student Engagement for more information.
What goes into an ORC decision?
The ORC makes a decision according to the guidelines outlined in the ORC funding policies document.
What is a complete budget request?
Submit all documents by the submission deadline. Any additional information submitted during the budget hearings will not be considered.
I have been asked to attach a Business Plan for my budget request. Is there an example of what they are looking for?
Business plans are an important part of a fundraising request. Here is a business plan example of what the committee is looking for.
How do I get help with my application and event planning process?
For help with your application please contact the SGA VP of Finance. For help with event planning, please contact the Office of Student Engagement.
What happens to my funding if I am charging for my event?
The revenue will be deducted from the total requested amount. If the revenue exceeds the cost, the request will not be funded.
The SGA Conference Fund helps fund Smith students attend a conference that is taking place off campus. Individual students apply to the SGA Conference Fund through the Universal Conference Fund Application. Organizations apply to the Organization Conference Fund through the Fall 2019 SGA Funding Application. Both applications are found on the Smith Social Network.
The SGA Conference Fund is a fund set aside from the SGA operating budget to assist students in need of financial support to pursue outside academic opportunities in the form of conferences. There are limited funds in the Conference Fund and students are expected to exhaust all sources of funding before applying to this fund. The Conference Fund is for individuals; for organizations, there is the subsidiary Organization Conference Fund.
The Organization Conference Fund is a fund for organizations looking to go together to a conference. The limit on the number of people is one SGA van full (seven people, including driver) or 4 people. The organization's treasurer would apply for the Conference Fund if the org wants to take a SGA van. Otherwise, members should apply individually.
There are limited funds available for the Conference Fund, and students should exhaust all other sources of funding before applying to the SGA Conference Fund. Students must state whether or not they have applied and successfully received Conference Fund funding previously in the academic year for which they are applying. Students must outline the differences between each application and explain the necessity for going to each event.
The 2020-2021 Universal Conference Fund Application is availabe through the Smith Social Network.
Please Note: You must turn on your notifications in the Social Network as this is how the Finance Committee will contact you about your funding request.
Applications must be submitted by Monday at 5 p.m. to be heard the week they were submitted. Late applications will be saved for the next meeting.
The SGA VP of Finance will present the request to the Finance Committee for review and will be available for consultation and assistance to students during the entire funding process.
The SGA Sawyer Fund helps fund an event held on the Smith College campus. Any individual or organization in the Smith community may apply. The event must be free of charge and open to all Smith students and the larger community.
Bringing Speakers to Campus
If bringing a speaker from outside of Smith, signed contracts with invited speakers should be filed in the Office of Student Engagement.
Students may apply for the Sawyer Fund using the Fall 2020 SGA Funding Application.
Please Note: You must turn on your notifications in the Social Network as this is how Finance and ORC will contact you about your funding request.
Planning an Event
Once your request has been approved, a member of the Office of Student Engagement can advise you on the managing of the logistics of your event, from locating the space to planning refreshments.
Smith College has a pool of Facilities Management vehicles that student groups and houses can reserve.
All student drivers must adhere to the following policies:
- Vehicles must only be used for approved Smith student organization/house programs and events
- There must be two certified drivers per vehicle
- Maximum of two vehicles for any one event
- Not for emergency or personal use
- May be used to carry passengers only; they are not intended for hauling equipment or other property
If you have questions or concerns, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org or 413-585-4950.
Report an Accident
- Student at Smith College
- Valid U.S. driver's license issued from the United States or U.S. territories
- At least 18 years old
- At least one year's driving experience, either in the United States or internationally
Drivers may not have had:
- More than two accidents in past three years
- Any Type A violations in past three years
- Any combination of accidents and Type B violations more than two in past three years
Step 1: Register Your Driving Credentials
- Go to the Five Colleges Driver Credentialing website
- Read the Driver Minimum Requirements
- Read the Driver Agreement to Terms and Conditions, Rules and Regulations
- Go to the top of the page to Quick Links, click on "Start the credentialing process"
- Fill out the "Online Driver Credentialing Form" (driver's license information)
You are responsible for reviewing all of the information contained in this presentation and will be held accountable.
Step 3: Online Defensive Driving Presentation and Quiz
Read the instructions below on how to access the defensive driving presentation and quiz. Must get a passing score of 80 percent*.
*The SGA office runs a report to show who has taken the quiz and the score received.
Step 4: Reserving Your Van
You may not reserve a van through the Smith Social Network until all your drivers have been fully certified to drive. To reserve a van, go to the events tab under your organization or house and "create an event". The type of event you are choosing is Van Request unless you are reserving a van as part of a larger event.
Step 5: Canceling Your Van Reservation
In the event that your reservation needs to be cancelled, please send an email to BOTH email@example.com and firstname.lastname@example.org letting them know that you will not be using the van. Students and organizations that do not cancel their reservations in advance will have their vehicle use privileges revoked.