Smith College Q&A

Q: Trans women at Smith?
A: Trans women at Smith!
Fall 2014 Semester Meetings: Mondays from 6-7PM
in the Resource Center for Gender and Sexuality (basement of Haven-Wesley). These meetings are open to the Smith community and to trans women in the Pioneer Valley. You can join us at any point in the semester!

Friday 9/19 7-8pm: Trans and/or Non-binary and/or Genderqueer Student Caucus to Discuss Admissions Policy Reform at Smith College | Facebook

Open to all trans, genderqueer, and/or nonbinary Smithies + all trans women who attend schools in the Pioneer Valley 

Please signal boost so that we can get a good turnout! 



There Are No Prisons In A Queer Paradise // San Francisco, CA, USA // Free the gay shame 3

Prisons are for burning.



There Are No Prisons In A Queer Paradise // San Francisco, CA, USA // Free the gay shame 3

Prisons are for burning.

(via queerandpresentdanger)

Concerns about privacy have been raised regarding the trans student caucus (see previous post). If you are a trans and/or nonbinary student at Smith and feel uncomfortable attending, you can send your thoughts to using an anonymous email client (like this one). You can also use the anonymous ask feature on tumblr. We will ask that everything said within the discussion will not be shared with those who are not present. Please let us know if you have other concerns about making this conversation accessible to the whole community. 

In light of the recent events at Mount Holyoke and Mills College, a few Q&A members are planning a trans and non-binary student caucus to talk out a strategy for policy reform concerning trans men, non-binary and/or genderqueer students. Q&A members have avoided taking a stance on the admission of non-women at Smith in the past.

However, Q&A members will be meeting with the administration in early October (after they refused to meet with us prior these new policies at other colleges) and now recognize the need to have an answer to these questions. As we prepare to advocate for policy change, we want to open the conversation up to include the larger trans and non-binary communit(ies) at Smith, especially to people who have not worked with Q&A before.

** The student caucus will be CLOSED to cis people, OPEN to all trans, non-binary, and/or genderqueer Smith students, and OPEN to all trans women who attend schools in the Pioneer Valley. There will be no exceptions. To sign up for the caucus and participate in a Doodle poll to schedule it, please contact Please help spread the word on campus and at other schools in the Valley. **

Doodle: Take Two: Weekly Q&A Meetings

Bryn Mawr College: An Open Letter to Bryn Mawr College, calling for the inclusion of Trans Women

“I just called the office of Alumnae relations at Smith College to express my disappointment that another seven sister was a leader in Women’s education, and not us, and put pressure on Smith to implement similar policies. I told them that until they take a proactive stance like MHC, i am withholding $$$. I encourage other Smithies to do the same! 1-800-526-2023 option #4.”

—    Facebook comment from Sasha Kaufmann

Mount Holyoke College made history today and opened its gates to all trans women regardless of gender documentation.

Smith, it’s time to do the right thing. 

Read Mount Holyoke’s statement here. 

News flash: it’s totally possible for a womens’ college to admit women with male gender markers on their admissions materials

Mills College - a women’s college in California - has always had an unwritten admissions policy we’re very fond of: anyone who identifies as a woman is welcome, regardless of gender markers on admissions documents. But now they’ve officially clarified the policy:

"Students who self-identify as female are eligible to apply for undergraduate admission. This includes students who were not assigned to the female sex at birth but live and identify as women at the time of application….Where there is a conflict between the student’s self-identified gender and the gender that appears on legal documentation such as an academic transcript or documents provided as part of the financial aid process, the student is strongly encouraged to contact the Office of Undergraduate Admissions for a discussion around their desire to attend a women’s college and how they self-identify in terms of gender. This self-identification shall be the driving force behind the College’s eligibility decision." — Mills College Admissions 

Let’s push Smith to adopt the same discussion-based process! 

“If the purpose of a women’s college is to provide a place free of gender discrimination where women can flourish academically and socially, and to create lifelong networks that will help women overcome sexist roadblocks once they graduate, what argument can be made for excluding women in especially dire need of these advantages, on the basis of what makes them vulnerable in the first place?”


"Smith’s Unsisterly Move" - Jaclyn Friedman for The American Prospect

A controversial admissions decision at the all-women’s college shows how far some feminist institutions have yet to go in recognizing the fight for transgender rights as their own.