There is a survey you fill out during the summer before your first year in Smith where you can rank all the different campus housing areas. You won’t be able to choose a specific house and you’re not guaranteed your #1 choice. The survey also includes questions about your life style (ex. sleeping habits). Most first years will have a room mate. All international students will be paired with an American room mate. All first years are required to live on campus. Eventually, you’ll get an email that tells you where you’ll live and if you have a room mate or not.
Throughout the year you could change rooms if problems arise. Most people tend to change rooms at the end of semesters instead of in the middle of the semester, but housing is pretty flexible for emergencies.
At the end of the year, you have to choose if you’re staying in the same house or if you want to move to a different house. There is Room Draw to choose which room you live in. I haven’t experienced Room Draw yet so I’m not really sure how that works.
In the end, everything works out. So don’t worry too much if the first house you’re assigned wasn’t your first choice. :)
That’s a great question! A lot of international friends I know also don’t fly back every holiday. I don’t fly back every holiday either.
So school housing closes during Thanksgiving, Winter, Spring, and Summer vacations. Only some of the houses are open during vacation, so if you’re house isn’t listed as open, you’ll have to find a friend from a house that is open. There’s a fee that comes with the stay (about $50). You can get financial support for that if you need it.
What a lot of international students tend to do is travel around America during breaks instead of paying the fee and staying in small town Northampton all break. During winter break, you can take January Term classes (zero to few credit classes) at Smith and Five College Consortium. Summer vacation is a lot longer so there can be internship or job opportunities on campus or near by town. Thanksgiving is a traditional American holiday in the fall, it’s a short break so you can stay on campus and have thanksgiving at professors’ houses or maybe you’ll get invited by an American friend for Thanksgiving Dinner.
The closest airport to Smith is Bradley Airport in Hartford, Connecticut. The Student Government Association has about $15 busses available to that airport for holidays. If you have a friend with a car who’s going to the airport too, they might be able to drive you. You can also fly from Boston or New York. To get there, you’ll probably have to ride the Peterpan Bus.
My blog so far might seem like I’m having a glamorous college life, but the reality is not so. This week was the toughest week of my college life so far (and I’m sure there is more).
I mostly started off the week on the wrong foot because I was disorganised and didn’t manage my time well. I confess… I decided to watch 20 episodes of “Attack on Titan” anime instead of preparing for my two biology exams and Chinese test. And that mistake lead to another, just like a row of dominos.
Every night, I was miserably sleep deprived. In the morning, I felt like smashing my phone alarm. During class, I was completely zoned out. After classes, I couldn’t take a break because there was so much to do. Consequently, I had to skip a meeting with my Science Outreach Project advisor and Jazz Ensemble because I was busy preparing for the biology exams.
I didn’t prepare for my biology exams efficiently either. Since all my classes last semester have been a breeze for me, I was totally lost in how to study for a class. Especially a biology class with so many details to memorise! Well, now I know how. Had to learn it the hard way.
Surprisingly, I did pretty well on my Chinese test. But I’m still worried about my two biology exams. I don’t think I did the best that I could have.
What did I learn from this? Get organised!
If I was organised, I could have had more time to sleep, so I could have done better in classes and less stress about approaching exams.
This is the real college life. It’s not always glamorous, sometimes it’s just tough.
A lot has been going on for Rally Day. Last night, there was a carnival at the Campus Center where you could enjoy food, games, and photobooths. Today in John M. Green Hall there is a Rally Day Convocation; Smith alumae are awarded with medals from the president.
Unfortunately, I’ve been very sick the past few days with non-stop coughing. But many friends have offered me various remedies from honey dipped lemons to Chinese herbal medicine. I’m feeling a lot better now :)
Since I don’t really understand the tradition of Rally Day well, and I haven’t participated in it, click here to find out more about Rally Day!
What’s most important for me today is that there are no classes. So, I’m using this precious time to get a full day rest so I can get back on track.