Name: Emily Cryan
Hometown: Shrewsbury, MA
What made you want to come to Smith?
Like most juniors in high school, April vacation was the Great College Tour. For four straight days my mom, dad, and fourteen-year-old brother packed up our car and set off to ten different colleges all over Massachusetts. Coming out to Western Mass, we stopped by Hampshire, Amherst, and UMass. None of the schools clicked for me, and with each passing visit I was becoming more and more discouraged that I was never going to find the college for me. Now here comes a saying that has ultimately led me to the best things in my life thus far: Mother knows best. It was my mom who suggested we look at Smith. I had never even considered going to an all-women’s college—I didn’t even know that they existed. However, driving up Main Street Northampton, seeing College Hall through the car windows, I remember thinking,“Wow.” It was love at first site; I was in love with the houses, the pond, the open curriculum, and even the trees! I knew that I’d thrive here. After that visit, I visited three more times: the fourth time in December of 2012, to get a Smith sweatshirt after I got my early decision acceptance letter. Becoming a Smithie was the best Chanukah gift ever!
You’re a Gold Key tour guide and one of the Chapin House HONS (Head of New Students) for next year. What makes you want to get so involved with prospective and first-year students?
I fell in love with Smith the moment I stepped onto campus, so I just want to spread that love. I’ve always been the type of person who loves helping, teaching, and interacting with people. I know the stress and the anxiety that I had during the college process; I was so worried about finding the college that I thought I’d never find it. I hope that in being a tour guide, I can help ease a prospie’s mind for at least one school. Also, Smith has such a magnificent legacy, and I want prospective students to see that they could be part of something special here, and that at Smith you don’t just come for the academics, you come for the decade old traditions and the lifelong friendships as well. I’m also really excited for my HONS position next year! Chapin House is by far one of the best houses on campus (granted every Smithie says that about their own house), and I am just excited to welcome the new first years. At Smith, we pride ourselves in our housing system. Also, orientation is weird; it’s four or five days of going to panel after panel, repeating your name, class, where you’re from, and what you want to study to a bunch of people who you are probably not going to talk to again. As a HONS you can create stability from this gigantic, overwhelming transitional stage in life. As my housemate and co-HONS told us, we want Chapin House to become a home.
What’s your favorite memory from your first-year at Smith?
To be honest, I’m going to use the cookie-cutter response here: I don’t have a single favorite memory from my first year- all of them are special to me. It’s not just the big events either, like Mountain Day, Big Sib/Little Sib week, or Winter Weekend. I love the little moments too, like having Just Dance parties on Friday nights, ordering in from Teapot, working in the kitchen, running around the house from room to room talking to people, and just sitting out on Chapin Lawn. Maybe the reason I can’t pinpoint a single memory is because everyday there is just so much that happens; I can’t believe it’s already April! Time has really flown by; I didn’t believe college would go by so quickly. I guess what I love about this past year is all the times I have laughed. I have doubled over laughing, with tears streaming down my face, more times here than I did back home. It’s not because I was unhappy at home, I think it’s just because of the atmosphere and the friends I’ve made here. My friendships I’ve made are and will always be one of my favorite things I’ll take away from Smith.