Some of these women have families outside, and some have no one to look forward to going home to when they get out.
Glendean Hamilton '13, offered a slideshow of her favorite moments at Smith during a conversation with first years in the Bridge Pre-Orientation Program hosted by the Office of Multicultural Affairs. The Bridge Program, launched in 1970 as a support network for African-American students entering Smith, has since expanded to include students of all racial backgrounds who are interested in multicultural leadership and finding mentors, friends and resources.
During her first few days at Smith in 2009, Glendean Hamilton ’13 remembers feeling anxious about a number of things. Through academic seminars with faculty and student-led workshops and activities, the program helps welcome new students to the larger Smith community.
In a packed classroom at Ford Hall, Hamilton—now a research associate at an education foundation—offered advice and reflections about her time at Smith to 60 students participating in the weeklong program hosted by the Office of Multicultural Affairs.
” That last worry sparked laughter from an audience of first-year students Hamilton spoke with on August 23 as part of this year’s Bridge Pre-Orientation Program for students of color.
I’m also the only girl from my community ever to come to Smith. ” Hamilton said, clapping her hands in approval before writing her contact information on the board.
If she can do it, I can do it.” Ava Busto Schiff, a first year from Brooklyn, responded to Hamilton’s message this way: “Listening to you makes me want to have you as part of my network,” Schiff said at the end of the session.
Everyone on this site is in prison, some for short periods of time, and others for longer.
These are real women with a real need for respect and dignity in a world that has taken most of that away from them.
Although starting college can be daunting, Hamilton said new students can find the support they need at Smith.
“That girl, what she struggled to overcome is what I still walk with today,” Hamilton said, pointing to the onscreen image of her younger self.
Many states have websites with inmate information posted for public viewing.