By Victoria Melnikova ‘16
It has been over two months since I came to Brazil, and every weekend I try to discover something new. The more I discover, the more I feel at home here. This past weekend I spent with my friends exploring downtown Rio de Janeiro. We started off visiting the famous Escadaria Selarón or Selarón Steps. The history behind this construction is simple. It was named after its creator Jorge Selarón. He was born in Chile, but spent most of his life in Brazil. He was living in the Santa Teresa neighborhood when he decided to cover a set of boring steps near his house with colorful ceramic tiles. With the support of his friends and locals he continued working on the steps over a number of years. Over time tourists from all over the world were bringing him ceramic pieces which he included in his work. The set has 215 steps, and it took a little over 20 years to complete. Here are some ceramic tiles with different states that I found on my way up. On the top of Santa Teresa we decided to treat ourselves to homemade Portuguese pastries. I have to say they were extremely delicious! From there, we headed to a wonderful exhibition of modern art organized by BEX (Brazilian Exchange), ArtRio’14. Artists from different countries display their work in order to attract Brazilian and foreign collectors and promote intercultural exchange. I feel that events of that sort expose how creative people can be, especially when it comes to modern art. After spending a few hours at the fair, we decided to finish our day with authentic caipirinhas and a nice dinner in a little Italian place by the praça São Salvador.
Hello! This is a continuation of a random weekly post inspired by Superfruit that I started last month where I talk about something I’m really excited about each week.
This week, I’ve been obsessed with my Study of Women and Gender class (SWAG) called “Gender, Law, and Policy”. In this class, I…
This is a really specific question, so I can’t give you a complete answer. I’m sorry. I haven’t taken any environmental science or engineering courses. Fortunately, I have a good friend who is an engineering major, so I asked her about engineering, and this is what I got:
Smith College is the only women’s college in the United States with an engineering department (link). Although it is relatively new department (12 years), Smithies who graduate with an Engineering major can get jobs and can get into graduate schools. According to my friend, the engineering classes the past two years have been overflowing with students who want to take the class! It’s getting really popular :)
She thinks the strengths in Smith’s Engineering program is the way it focuses on taking a Liberal Arts approach to Engineering. In Liberal Arts, you are required to take classes outside of your major to have a wide range of knowledge. In the Engineering context, this will allow you to be exposed to different types of engineering fields that you can incorporate into your specific interest or future studies. In addition, all Engineering classes are only about 20~25 students per class, so professors have close relationships with each student. In Smith, you can easily find research opportunities with professors because there is a lot of support within the department.
Besides research opportunities with Smith professors, there is an exciting engineering program every year where engineering companies bring projects for Smith students to work on, so you get really cool real life experiences.
There are also some negative points about engineering in Smith. Because the department is so small compared to large universities, courses in the department here may not be suited to your specific interest, and you may not be able to take specific classes because Smith doesn’t offer it. It might be worthwhile to go to the Smith College course catalog (link) and browse through what kind of engineering classes Smith offers.
Even if you have a very specific interest in engineering and you are really interested in studying at Smith for the Liberal Arts background to engineering, there is the option of studying abroad/ doing a domestic exchange to large universities with strong engineering departments. It would be a good opportunity to take specific engineering courses you are passionate about. (Smith has a very wide range of study abroad/ domestic exchange programs with great support system, so don’t worry! (link))
Overall, Smith’s engineering major is probably the most rigorous major; it has the most required number of credits. It’s a lot of work if you consider that half of your total credits must be from courses outside of your major in order to graduate. So be prepared!
I hope you have a better understanding of Smith’s engineering department now. I couldn’t get in touch with a person from the Environmental Science and Policy major/ minor, but you can find more information here. Let me know if I can help you with anything else. :)
September 15 to October 15 is Hispanic/Latino Heritage Month (U.S. celebrated). Here in Smith College, this national heritage celebration is acknowledged through presentations and events. The unity organization known as Nosotras encompasses a wide-range and diverse group of Latina women who come…
All right, two and a half months have gone by in beautiful Rio de Janeiro. There are day’s when I wake up astounded at the fact that I am actually fulfilling one of my many dreams.
Aside from living in paradise, I’m also attending a great university, Pontifical Catholic University of Rio de…
As many of you know, I was originally scheduled to spend my fall semester in Jordan, but due to problems in the north, south, east, and west of the country, I felt my travel would be limited, so I changed my plans to attend the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS), University of London…
I’ve been putting a lot of pressure on myself this semester to stay organized and disciplined. Every semester, I see myself start off strong and then, gradually, I start putting off work and playing the catch up game. Although I regain some momentum, it’s not the same as the beginning. For the…
So, not to boast or anything but my roommate and I won the best roommate pair game of the year in our house (Washburn burn, baby, burn)!! We get a free calender and whatnot. We also get to participate in an all school game and the winners get goodie prizes (ice cream or cookies, not sure).
This is our silly picture with our awesome HR.
This is our formal picture. We’re so cute.
By Jordan Dubin ‘15
Last year I studied abroad in Cordoba, Spain for both semesters and I had the time of my life! As a bonus, I became fluent in Spanish. While in Cordoba, I learned the meaning of “Spanish time,” which meant that people did things on their own schedule. Being back in the United States has been challenging, knowing that I can no longer take my “siesta,” because there is definitely a strict schedule here at Smith. As much as I enjoyed “Spanish time,” I must admit that I appreciate the structure and academics at Smith. I am especially excited about my Spanish classes here at Smith, as they give me the opportunity to share all that I learned last year. One day I plan on returning to Spain, but for now it’s good to be home. Adios!
By Shira Burns ‘16
We had our first class on Monday, which was a language class. On the way there, we stopped for gelato, even though it was the morning :). We’ve found a new place to eat lunch, which is this piazza close to where our classes are held. My favorite class so far has been a cooking class, where we learned how to cook four different dishes, including Tiramisu. When we eat dinner with our host mother, she has the TV on in the background so we can become accustomed to the Italian language.
Here’s a picture of me at the cooking class:
We also had a class where we went around the city and learned about the different methods of transportation: buses, trains, taxis, etc. On the way there we passed a movie theatre that plays movies in English, which I’m very excited about going to.
This is us on our tour:
1. You get a second family
Being an athlete at Smith provides you with an entire group of intelligent, talented, and fantastic women who will do everything in their power to see you happy and thriving. You get coaches who solely want you to succeed and will push and mentor you until you find…