Sophie Goldsmith '24 - Introduction


Hi! My name is Sophie Goldsmith (she/her), and I am a sophomore at Amherst College. I currently live in Atlanta, but grew up in Tampa, FL. I’m a biology and soon-to-be French double major, and enjoy taking history classes on the side. I am the president of Amherst's Democrats club, am on the Hillel e-board, and participate in the Outing Club and the water polo team. In my free time, I love to read, do crossword puzzles, crochet, and go on runs.

This year, I will take STEM and humanities classes, figure out which study abroad program I want to do next year, and try (and fail) to adjust to cold weather

I would love to get in touch with anyone who is interested in Amherst. Please don't hesitate to reach out to me about classes, being Jewish at Amherst, STEM research at Amherst, double majors, or any other questions at



Hi everyone, I hope you are well! For the last few weeks, as the semester wraps up, I’ve been feeling pretty exhausted and unmotivated. I thought that for this week’s blog I’d talk about my experiences with burnout, and how the College attempts to minimize its affects on students. If you have any questions, please email me at

Reasons for burnout

I think the number one cause for my burnout right now is feeling like the pace of my semester is unsustainable. As the semester has progressed, and the weeks have gone on, I’ve experienced a heavy workload without much of a mental break. I haven’t been able to read as much as I’d like, I have been having trouble sleeping, and even eating is often unappealing (which is uncharacteristic of me). Ultimately, I just need the semester to end, and to have a few weeks without many responsibilities so I can relax and re-ground myself.

How I reduce burnout

What I’ve found most effective in stopping burnout is intentionally devoting time each week to doing things I enjoy, without thinking about the work I have to do or planning in my head how I will finish up assignments. It is hard to separate and compartmentalize, but me-time is so much more enjoyable when I’m not stressing about what I’ll have to do later in the day or in the days to come. I like to read, crochet, go on runs, and spend time with friends, but often when I am running or crocheting I’m also thinking about what the coming days will look like. Something I need to work on is intentionally NOT thinking about what I have to do, so I can have some time separate from schoolwork. Time with friends is perfect for this – it is distracting, and I love being with them.

How Amherst tries to minimize burnout

Amherst has programs throughout the semester to promote healthy habits, and also has events at the end of the semester as the general stress and anxiety of the student body increases. For example, today there is an event with baby farm animals to hold and watch, which will undoubtedly be wonderful. There are also self-care programs in the coming week to help people relax, and in the past there has been programming to encourage better sleep and study habits. There are also parties to help people decompress; last Saturday was the Spring Concert with Saucy Santana, and tomorrow there is a white-out rave for students to attend.

Thank you for reading!

Tags:  blog-student life 
Tags:  blog-student life 

Class registration


Hi everyone, I hope you are well! In this week’s blog, I’m going to tell you about the process of registering for classes, for both incoming freshmen and existing students. If you have any questions, please email me at!

Class registration for freshmen

Registering for classes for freshmen looks different than class registration for any other grade, because freshmen register right before the semester begins. In the summer, after incoming students have committed to Amherst, students are assigned an advisor who will offer insights on which classes to take and how to build their schedule. When first-years arrive on campus for orientation, usually a week or two before classes start, they meet with their advisor who helps them register. Professors very often reserve spots in their classes for incoming first-years, so even though everyone else registers for classes months before the semester begins, there is still plenty of space for incoming students.

My process looked a little different due to COVID. I didn’t have an orientation, so I met with my first-year advisor via Zoom a couple times. He helped me pick out my classes and register online, and I found that process to be seamless.

Class registration for existing students

Existing students register for classes for the upcoming semester months before the semester begins. For example, Fall 2023 class registration began three weeks ago (in early April). Students are expected to meet with their advisors during what is handily called Advising Week, and bring a list of six or seven courses from which they can build a schedule. After their advisor approves their schedule on Workday, the platform we use for registration, students are able to register for their classes during Registration Week.


The classes that students register for during Registration Week are not set in stone; rather, there is a period at the beginning of each semester known as add/drop when students can sit in on several classes and decide whether they want to drop classes or add to classes in their schedule. Professors are generally very accommodating of add/drop requests, as long as you didn’t miss their class in the first two weeks.

Thank you for reading! Please email me with any questions!

Dining at Amherst


Hi everyone, I hope you are well! In this blog, I’m going to talk about the different places one can get food on campus, and my personal preferences. If you have any questions, please email me at!

Valentine Hall

Amherst has one main dining hall, which is named Valentine Hall (although students refer to it as Val). Val is open on weekdays from 7:30 AM to 8:30 PM, and students can come into Val whenever they want between those hours, however many times that they wish. Val doesn’t serve hot food for all of those 13 hours; breakfast is served between 7:30-10 AM, lunch from 11-2 PM, and dinner is 5-8:30 PM. The Val menu is available online, and they have a mobile app that students use to check what’s for lunch or dinner on the fly.

When Val isn’t serving hot food, their salad bar is open, along with fresh fruit, bagels, bread and spreads, waffles, and panini presses. Students can always get juice and soda, and make coffee and tea. There are plenty of dairy and non-dairy milk and creamer options, and honey and lemon for tea. I like to go into Val to sit with a cup of diet Coke and do some homework in between meals – I find it very peaceful. And the Val staff are all incredibly nice!

Grab n Go

Another option for food on campus is Grab n Go, located in the Keefe Campus Center. Grab n Go is only open for extended lunch hours (10:30 AM-2:30 PM) on weekdays, and you can only swipe in once per day. In addition to easy-to-eat-on-the-go meals like wraps and sandwiches, they also have snacks, fruit, desserts, and drinks. Sometimes I like to go to Grab n Go just to stock up on snacks, only to proceed to Val for my actual lunch. That being said, it is a great research if you have class during when Val is serving lunch and want to be able to grab food to eat.


There are two cafes on campus: one in the Science Center, and one in the Frost Library. The cafes serve coffees, milkshakes, smoothies, pastries, and meals such as sandwiches and pizzas. Unlike Val and Grab n Go, these cafes are not included in the meal plan, and you have to pay if you want to get food from them. I typically avoid the cafes and just head to Val if I want food, because Val IS included in the meal plan, but the cafes are very convenient if you are having a marathon study session and don’t want to break for food.

Thank you for reading! Please email me if you have any questions!

Tags:  blog-student life 
Tags:  blog-student life 

Going off campus


Hi everyone, I hope you are well! In this blog, I’m going to discuss opportunities in the vicinity of Amherst (but technically off campus), the ways students are able to travel off-campus, and my thoughts on whether it is worth going to a college in a small town. If you have any questions, please email me at

Town of Amherst

Just outside Amherst’s campus, within walking distance, is the town of Amherst. It is small, but it has lots: a wonderful library, several restaurants, shops and boba shops, and a fire station. A little further away (about a mile if you were to walk) is a plaza with a post office, and also a Stop n Shop and other grocery stores. I contend that Hampshire Mall is walkable – it’s only two miles, and I’ve walked it before. There, you can find Target, Dick’s Sporting Goods, Joann’s, and Trader Joe’s, among other stores one would find at a mall.

Getting off campus

The easiest and cheapest way to travel off campus is to use the Pioneer Valley Transport Authority (PVTA). Bus rides are free to students during the school year with the presentation of your school ID, and the buses travel to UMass, Hampshire Mall, and Northampton. Sometimes my friends and I like to go to Northampton on the weekend to walk around and get lunch – it’s a bit of a time commitment, because the bus ride is about an hour, but it is a nice way to spend a day.

Students can also reserve Zipcars on campus. This is pretty pricey, because you have to pay an annual membership fee in addition to the car rental fee, but if you don’t have a car and need to drive somewhere off campus, it is a good option. Personally, I use Zipcar every weekend when I volunteer at the hospital in Northampton, and it is very convenient.

Lastly, there is a Peter Pan bus stop right on campus, which has buses to Boston and New York, among other places. One can also travel to the Amtrak station in Springfield, which has lots more options for destinations.

Small-town education

When I studied abroad this past fall in Paris, it was my first time living for an extended period of time in a city. I didn’t know what to expect, but I loved it. I appreciated the public transportation, that everything you need is accessible, and how many people there were. I’ve decided that for medical school, I’d like to be in a city, but for my undergraduate education I don’t mind being in a small town. I spend most of my time on campus, and because almost all of the student body lives on campus, I don’t feel the need to get out of the Amherst bubble in order to be social. Simply put, there isn’t a lot that I could get from a city that I need right now, and Amherst is a great place to be in for undergrad. I think if you have your own apartment while you are in college, that changes things, and it could be nice to live in a city. But for me, right now, I’m perfectly content here.

Thank you for reading! Have a great weekend everyone!

Tags:  blog-student life 
Tags:  blog-student life 

Health at Amherst


Hi everyone, I hope you are well! In this week’s blog, I am going to talk about mental and physical health, wellness, and my experiences with the Health Center, getting prescriptions, and with going to therapy at Amherst. Please email me at with any questions!

The Health Center

The Health Center at Amherst is right on campus, and students can make appointments online to be seen. They typically only take students by appointment only, but the other day I had terrible allergies and walked in and was able to get some strong allergy medicine quickly without needing an appointment. The Health Center is open from Monday-Friday, but if you need help after hours or on weekends, there is an on-call triage nurse who can assess your condition, help you, or recommend you go to urgent care or a hospital.

With regard to prescriptions, the Health Center will typically call in medicine they prescribe to you to the pharmacy at UMass. There is a courier that picks up these prescriptions five times a day and brings them to the Health Center on Amherst’s campus, making it very convenient for students. Sometimes, if I have a prescription refill for a medication that I brought from home, I just fill it at the CVS that is near Amherst’s campus and walk there to pick it up.

My last note on the Health Center is about patient advocacy. The nurses and doctors at the Health Center will advocate for you if you ever need accommodations or an extension due to a medical event. When I had my horrible allergies earlier this week, the nurse I spoke to make it very clear that I didn’t have to take an exam later that day if I didn’t want to, and all I needed to do was ask her to contact my professor. Details are kept confidential, of course, but the medical professionals at the Health Center are on your side.

The Counseling Center

The Counseling Center at Amherst has several therapists that students can meet with over extended periods of time, and also holds group therapy sessions for people with things in common (for example, marginalized identities or PTSD). I’ve been seeing a therapist at the Counseling Center for a year and a half, and while I really like her, the process of getting a therapist at Amherst is arduous. It is difficult to schedule an intake appointment, and they often must be planned months in advance. Obviously, this isn’t great if you have a semi-urgent problem that you need to talk about. I have friends who go to therapists in town or elsewhere instead of at Amherst, which works well for them. The advantages of therapy on campus is that it is free, and that it is nearby.


In addition to the resources at the Health Center and the Counseling Center, several groups and departments at Amherst have wellness initiatives to improve the experiences of students at Amherst. The gym holds exercise classes several times a week, which include barre and introductory weightlifting, and there are also Zumba classes multiple times a week. Other organizations have events including Sleep Week and Sex Week to educate students about healthy practices.

Thank you for reading! Please email me if you have any questions at all.

Tags:  blog-student life 
Tags:  blog-student life 

Lab classes at Amherst College


Hi everyone, I hope you are well! In today’s blog, I’m going to talk about my experiences in various lab classes during my time at Amherst. The labs my first year were almost entirely virtual, so I’ll talk a bit about how those operated, and I’ll also talk about what you can expect if you enter introductory and higher-level physics, chemistry, and biology classes. Please email me at if you have any questions!

Biology labs

Although I am a biology major, I find biology labs to be some of the most arduous of the lab classes I’ve taken at Amherst. Reactions often take a long time, and because some of the lab time is devoted to understanding concepts while reactions are running, I sometimes struggle to keep up with my classmates in their progress in understanding what is happening and why. In my molecular genetics lab especially, I struggled to understand the intricacies of the work we were doing in lab. Pre-lab readings helped sometimes, but I often needed to revisit exactly what we did multiple times when studying for a test. That being said, I enjoy doing bench work, and recommend biology labs if you do too.

Some of my intro biology labs were conducted outdoors: for one of them, we got to look for plants and animals on a nature walk, and in another we counted a certain type of plant in a given square area. I enjoyed getting to be in person (this was during my COVID year) and outdoors, and being able to physically interact with what we were studying.

Chemistry labs

Chemistry labs are some of my favorite labs that I’ve had at Amherst. I’ve taken a year of organic chemistry, which involved 3.5 hour labs once a week. They rarely lasted the entire time, and the protocols walked us through each step of performing reactions. Unlike physics labs, where we have to design our own experiments, in chemistry labs we did the experiments (often with some unknown substances) and had to determine what reaction was occurring, where molecules transferred, and the identities of various unknown substances. A lot of labs ended with crystallizing products, which we could weigh to measure our yield of our reactions. In one lab we got to dye a piece of fabric, and in another we got to make a polymer that formed at the interface of two liquids. The lab professors gave quick lectures at the beginning of each lab to help orient us to the week’s reaction, and were very very good at answering questions on the fly and helping students move forward. I highly recommend organic chemistry at Amherst.

Physics labs

I’m in my first physics class at Amherst right now, so I only have experience in the PHYS-116 (intro physics) lab. It is different from the labs in other science classes in that we are not given a protocol; instead, we are given some model to test or some question to answer, and have to design an experiment to find the solution. It is a little painstaking and frustrating to figure out what to do for each step instead of being told what to do as in chemistry or biology, but I recognize that the best way to understand a concept is to be forced to really grapple with it. These labs usually take close to the full time, and involve building pulleys and ramps, and launching balls across the room. It’s pleasant but toward the end of the three hours I think we all find it a little hard to stay super focused on the task at hand. My lab professor is incredible, and I learn a lot about concept application in the lab.

Thank you for reading! Have a great weekend!

Jewish Life at Amherst


Hi everyone! The last time I wrote about Jewish life at Amherst was a year and a half ago, so I thought I’d give an update on what is available for Jewish students at Amherst College. Please email me at if you have any questions!


Before I detail Jewish life on campus, I want to share some news that makes me very excited: we have finally secured a dedicated Jewish student lounge! It is a beautiful room with comfy chairs (couch to come), a Keurig, and snacks, and we are even planning a dedication bagel brunch where we gather and eat bagels and place a mezuzah on the doorframe. The rest of the Hillel executive board and I are incredible happy to have a devoted space for Jewish students to relax, do homework, and spend time with friends.

Also, I thought I’d list some of the Jewish studies classes at the Five Colleges in Fall 2023 so you can get a sense of what is available: there is Women & Gender in Judaism, The Holocaust, Jewish Food in a Historical Perspective, Sacred Space in Jewish Antiquity, and Hebrew language classes, among others.

Jewish Affinity Groups

There are two Jewish affinity groups on campus: Hillel and Amitim. Hillel is a nationwide organization with groups on several college campuses. At Amherst, Hillel hosts weekly Shabbat dinners, occasional events for holidays (like Hamantaschen making for Purim and Hannukah parties), and speakers about Jewish life, history, and culture. One notable event last year was when a Holocaust survivor came to speak to us and answer questions.

Amitim is another Jewish affinity group at Amherst, that is unaffiliated with Hillel. Their goal is to bring in people who perhaps don’t consider themselves “Jewish enough” to go to Hillel events (even though everyone is welcome!) or people who want to experience Jewish culture separately from religion. Amitim holds Havdalah, mixers, parties, and study halls, and I love going to their events.

Opportunities nearby

The Jewish Community of Amherst (JCA) invites us to their Shabbat dinners on Friday nights, and Hillel tends to do that instead of a Shabbat dinner on campus once a month. JCA Shabbat consists of a brief service and a dinner, and is a great way to get a little more of a religious experience than one gets at Hillel Shabbats.

Also, the Yiddish Book Center is very near Amherst College and is easy to visit. They are dedicated to the preservation of books in the Yiddish language, and hold events about Yiddish history and distribute books to students. I have yet to go, but I plan to before I graduate.

Thank you for reading! I hope you have a great weekend!

Pre-med at Amherst


Hi everyone, I hope you’re doing well! In this week’s blog, I’m going to talk about my experiences as a student on the pre-medical track at Amherst. Being on a pre-med track is pretty new for me, so I hope this information helps any of you who are considering going to medical or PA school. Please email me at with any questions!

Premed requirements

The specifics of pre-med requirements may vary a little from medical school to medical school, but for the most part they are very consistent: students are required to take a year of biology, a year of introductory chemistry, a year of organic chemistry, a year of physics, a semester of biochemistry, and a year of English.

I think some undergraduate programs offer a pre-medical major, but Amherst doesn’t have that. I’m a biology and French double major, so I had already met a lot of the requirements for pre-med just by taking classes for my biology major. One area that I am struggling in is the requirement of a year of English – despite my French major, which proves I can express myself well in writing, I still need to complete two semesters of English classes. One way I can do this is by taking “in translation” classes, which I’m planning on doing next semester. It will be a class about French literature, but conducted in English and include readings in English. Despite all the English, I can still count the course toward my French major, because it is listed under the French department. I don’t want to take two French in translation classes in a row, because I want to keep working on my French skills, so I imagine that my second semester of senior year I’ll take another class entirely in English, and a separate French class.

I feel very lucky that I am able to finish pre-med requirements despite having decided to pursue a career in health somewhat late in my college journey. Even if I weren’t able to finish the requirements, there are programs available at Amherst and other universities where you can stay an extra year to fit in those classes, or take single classes at other universities over the summer or after you graduate to meet every requirement. So it is okay if you decide what you want to do later than you would’ve liked! Everything will work out.

Premed advising

At the Loeb Career Center, there are two wonderful pre-health advisors: Dean Richard Aronson and Becca Tischler. They are very easy to meet with and offer wonderful advice. They highly recommend meeting with them as early as possible even if you aren’t sure about pursuing a career in health – they just want to meet you and learn about your past and how you feel about your future. I have felt incredibly supported by them, and am excited to continue working with them as I take the MCAT and apply to med school.

Pre-med experience

Lastly, there are a couple ways to gain clinical experience while being an undergraduate student at Amherst College. Amherst has an on-campus EMS team called Amherst College Emergency Medical Services (ACEMS), and pay for students to stay on campus during January of their freshman or sophomore year to become EMS certified and join ACEMS. Because I decided to be pre-med the summer after my sophomore year, I was too late to join ACEMS. However, the Cooley Dickinson Hospital in Northampton offers volunteering positions to college students in the area, and I feel very lucky to get to volunteer in the emergency department for the next year and a half. I’ve been there for about a month, and I love it; every day is different and so exciting. It is the most rewarding thing I’ve ever done.

Thank you for reading! Next week is spring break, so you’ll hear from me again two weeks from now!

Thoughts on a week at Amherst


Hi everyone! I hope you are well! In this week’s blog, I’m going to give you an overview into what a week at Amherst looks like outside of classes, and some of my thoughts on stress management and mental health. Please email me if you have any questions at

This week at Amherst

The biggest topic of discussion on campus this week was the presence of a new social media app called Fizz. For a week, students sat at tables at the front of our dining hall and gave out donuts to people who downloaded the app. This proved to be very effective, and in a week, more than 1000 students had downloaded the app and made accounts. Fizz was created to create social media communities by college campuses, so the only people on my Fizz feed are people with verified Amherst email addresses. It reminds me a bit of Reddit, and while I don’t think we need any more social media apps, people can be very funny on it. The student newspaper at Amherst wrote an article about Fizz: here is the link.

Snow day and stress management

A big non-event at Amherst this week was the lack of snow day on Tuesday. Monday night saw about eight inches of snow, and we were all hoping for a snow day on Tuesday, especially considering this week was a peak week for midterm exams. Unfortunately for all of us who wanted a day off, Amherst staff were up plowing snow and salting walkways (very very loudly – everyone woke up) from about 4 AM onward to ensure we could all go to class. I’m glad I don’t have any classes to make up, but I really would’ve liked a snow day.

Just like in high school, sometimes schedules just work out so that you have what seems like dozens of tests and assignments due during the same week. That was this week for me – the combination of several assignments, labs, and exams made it unpleasant and overwhelming (and left me wanting a snow day). Talking to my friends and going on runs helped reduce my stress and make me feel better. I highly recommend finding stress-management skills and coping mechanisms for those tough, overwhelming days before you get to college. I find I am much happier and my mental health is improved since I nailed down what helps me handle stress.

In general, Amherst tries to emphasize the importance of mental health and well-being on campus. There are often events showcasing the importance of sleep, exercise, and hobbies for students. Also, Amherst’s counseling center helps students handle stress management, among other difficulties. They have several therapists that students can meet with for free, which I recommend if you ever feel like you could benefit from therapy.

Thank you for reading!

Tags:  blog-student life 
Tags:  blog-student life 

Winterfest 2023


Hi everyone! I hope you are well! Amherst held an annual event this past Sunday (2/19) called Winterfest, and I thought for this week’s blog, I’d write Winterfest activities and what I love about the limited traditions we have on campus. If you have any questions, please send me an email at

I always enjoy Winterfest, and other events like it, because I get to see almost the entire student body come together to have a shared experience and enjoy the events. Amherst doesn’t have many traditions, so I love when we can all do something together and strengthen the sense of community on campus.


Winterfest held in the general vicinity of the gym, and is spread across three areas. Outside the Orr Rink was smores-making, and it was nice to stand around the fire for a little bit and enjoy the warmth. Inside Orr Rink, the ice rink was open for people to skate on. There was music playing, and the skates typically reserved for the ice hockey teams

were free for everyone to use. I struggle with these ice hockey skates – they don’t have the toe pick at the end that figure skates have, and I find it much harder to balance. So I was slow, but it was fun to skate with my friends and watch the more-confident skaters zoom around and do turns.

The third location was in the Coolidge Cage, which is typically a versatile practice space but for Winterfest was decked out in decorations and had booths to visit. There was an inflatable slide in the center of the room, which people could climb up and go down, and there were a few photo stations (for example, one was set up to look like you were on a ski lift). There were ice sculptures outside, which I always enjoy looking at, and one of Amherst’s large inflatable mammoths was set up to welcome students in.


There was a stage set up in one corner of the room, with an acapella group from LA performing called the Filharmonic. They sang and made jokes, and I had a good time listening to them with my friends.


As I mentioned, there was a smores-making station outside of the ice rink, but there were also several food options inside. The smorgasbord made for a fun Sunday dinner before a tough week of classes; for savory options, there was a poutine-making station and dumplings.


There was also lots of dessert; a donut-decorating/dressing up station, Belgian waffles, and little pieces of cake and tarts that all made for a very well-rounded dessert.

Thank you for reading! Please email me at if you have any questions about Amherst!

Tags:  blog-student life 
Tags:  blog-student life 

Coming back to campus after studying abroad


Hi everyone, I hope you are well! I studied abroad last semester in Paris, and am so happy to be back at Amherst this spring. I thought for this week’s blog I would talk about my experience reintegrating at Amherst, and my first couple weeks of classes. Please email me at if you have any questions!


A worry of mine when coming back to campus after a semester abroad was reintegrating to the Amherst community. I think I was nervous about participating in clubs that I had missed for a semester, and being with friends who I hadn’t spoken to or spent time with for a while. Another challenging aspect of returning from studying abroad is that several of my friends who didn’t study abroad last semester ARE abroad this spring, meaning we are away from each other for a year. This is the nature of being a junior in college: half the time, a large part of your cohort is away from campus. It is a little jarring to look around the dining hall and not recognize anyone, but in meeting new people in classes, and spending time with my friends who are still on campus, I’m able to feel surrounded by familiarity and part of a community.

In my free time, I’ve been going to hockey games, attending events with Hillel, going to office hours with friends, and sitting and reading in the library in the town of Amherst. I also try to spend time outside – it has been very warm this winter, and the bike trail is unseasonably not-iced-over. I enjoy going on runs there and soaking up any sun that I can.


My classes

As a biology and French double major, I must juggle catching up with my major requirements and fulfilling pre-med requirements after studying abroad. My French class this semester is called Women of Ill Repute, and discusses prostitution in 19th-century French literature. The class is incredible, and I’m glad I have the opportunity to take it. I’m also taking intro physics and intro statistics, both of which are to fulfill pre-med requirements. I am REALLY enjoying the statistics class – the professor is absolutely wonderful, and I feel very safe and welcome in the class. All my classes in the math department at Amherst have been nothing short of incredible, and I highly recommend taking at least one math or statistics class when you get to Amherst to see how much you can enjoy math when the person teaching it is great at their job.

For my biology major, I am taking an ecology class and an evolution ecology lab. The ecology class is interesting; it is composed of only lectures and tests, with no discussion sections, problem sets, or any sort of homework. There isn’t even an official textbook – the professor had a textbook deal and wrote his own textbook, before backing out of the deal. The book was never published, but at each class he gives us printouts from his “textbook” of the content we are learning that day, and says that all we need to be successful on the tests is the information in his handouts. The class is structured differently than every other class I’ve taken at Amherst, so it will be a bit of a challenge to do well on exams, but I enjoy the content. He is very funny, and the lectures are entertaining.

Thank you for reading! If you have any questions, please email me at I’d love to talk.

Reproductive Justice Walkout


Hi everyone! I hope you are well! This week’s blog is about the reproductive justice walkout that we had on Thursday in the wake of the leaked Supreme Court draft opinion. If you have any questions about anything Amherst-related, please email me at

Response to the Draft Opinion

As I’m sure you all know, a draft opinion by Justice Alito on the Dobbs v. Jackson case was leaked by Politico on Monday (5/2/2022) night. The draft states that Roe v. Wade should be overturned, and at the time the draft was written, the majority of SCOTUS agreed with the opinion. The opinion has sent people across the country scrambling, and Amherst’s campus is no exception.

An email was sent from the Association of Amherst Students (essentially our student government) to all students to express support for bodily autonomy and personal health decisions, and to share a message from the Reproductive Justice Alliance on campus. The message included plans for a walkout to the Amherst town green (more detail below).

Lastly, signs by the Reproductive Justice Alliance were spread all over campus detailing how much money different members on Amherst’s Board of Trustees have donated to anti-abortion funds and politicians. The amounts are in the tens of thousands of dollars. Personally, I appreciate this blatant calling-out of the Board of Trustees, and I hope that the increased awareness that results from these signs will help us change the members on the board.

Reproductive Justice Alliance Walkout

The walkout was planned by the Reproductive Justice Alliance in coordination with at least twenty other colleges and universities across the country. Students left their classes at 2 PM on Thursday (5/5/2022) and met on the Val quad (the green space in front of Val, our dining hall). We were encouraged to wear green, and all together walked to the center of the town of Amherst. There were some planned speakers, including students and a professor, and then the microphone became open for anyone who wanted to talk. I found the walkout to be moving, and a sign of resilience and support for those who will be affected if the Court decides to overturn Roe.

Thank you for reading, and don’t lose hope! If you have any questions, please email me ????.

Trip to Broadway


Hi everyone, I hope you are well! In this week’s blog, I wrote about the trip I got to take to NYC this past Sunday (4/24/22) with Green Room, Amherst’s theatre club. If you have any questions, please email me at!

How I got on the trip

I’m not a member of the theatre club, but I am part of a campus-wide GroupMe chat. Several weeks ago, a member of Green Room posted a message that announced a trip to New York to see Hadestown and a signup form, but with the stipulation that not everyone would be able to make it on the trip. I saw the message hours after it had been sent, so I didn’t think I would have a shot, but I filled out the form on the off chance that I would be able to go. Much to my surprise, I got an email about a week later telling me that I had been selected for the trip. I wrote to the leader and asked if he could tell me who else was going, and was very happy to see that a good friend of mine also made it in.


Two buses were provided for us to get to and from New York City, and while we couldn’t access the buses during the day, we were allowed to leave our belongings on the bus. Lots of people brought homework to do on the bus and left it during the day, only to continue their work on the ride home. We left Amherst at around 8 AM, and it was a three-hour ride to NYC. We were picked up at 9 PM and got back after midnight.


Although transportation and Broadway tickets were free, we were responsible for our own food. Lots of people went to Val (the dining hall) before the buses left to grab food for the day, but my friends and I decided to eat lunch and dinner at restaurants in the city (and made reservations prior to the trip). We had lunch at a diner, and dinner at an Italian restaurant. I was particularly excited for the Italian – Passover had just ended, and I couldn’t wait to eat some pasta.

The Show!

Hadestown was incredible. We saw the Sunday matinee performance, and it had 4/5 of the core group of the Original Broadway Cast. I love theatre and have missed it during the pandemic. I’m hopeful that I’ll get to attend shows in France often while I study abroad in Paris next semester.

Thank you for reading! If you have any questions, please email me at

Interview with a Psych and French Double Major


Hi everyone, I hope you are well! For this week’s blog, I interviewed my friend Giulia. She is a French and Psychology double major, and I thought it could be interesting to hear her point of view as a purely humanities student, as opposed to mine, a humanities and STEM student. If you have any questions (for me or Giulia!), please email me at, or Giulia at

Q: What does your day-to-day look like at Amherst?

Giulia: I usually wake up on the earlier side for a college student; I’m up by 8 AM at the latest. I have 8:30 AM classes on Mondays and Wednesdays, and on Tuesdays and Fridays I have a 7:30 AM shift at the post office. I enjoy my shifts because it is a fun and easy start to my morning, and I feel very productive when it is 9:30 and I’ve already worked for two hours.

I have French classes on Mondays and Wednesdays, followed by my Psych Stats class. I’m done by 3 and have the rest of the afternoon off to do work and exercise. On Tuesdays and Thursdays, I have my Social Psych class (which is very interesting), and in the afternoons, I have a dance class that I’m auditing. This means I don’t have to do any of the homework, and instead just get to dance. On Fridays, I tutor someone in French after my post office shift, and then I have the rest of the day off to work.

Q: What is your favorite part of Amherst?

Giulia: The staff and the faculty are my favorite part. I’ve managed to create connections with staff I interact with almost every day. There are staff all over campus who I know I can say hi to and chat with when I see them. The faculty are also great. Also, it has finally started getting warmer out, and I love seeing people outside hanging out, spending time with friends, and doing homework. The vibes outdoors are very nice. Amherst has a lot of beautiful outside spots.

Q: What is your least favorite part of Amherst?

Giulia: I would have to say how far away Amherst is from home. I think Amherst is really great: I love my friends, my teachers, and my life here. But since I’m from California, Amherst is quite far from home, and I don’t get to see my family as much as I would like. Also, I severely overestimated my ability to thrive in New England weather! It is so cold for so much of the year!

Q: What do you do in your free time?

Giulia: I like to read, and I’ve recently been inspired to get back into running by my roommate. I like to go into town, either to Share Coffee to get either coffee or peanut butter toast, or to Black Sheep to get a London fog. Recently I’ve been discovering a lot of new study spaces around campus. I went to the planetarium for the first time the other day, and it was really cool! And, of course, I like to spend time with my wonderful friends.

Q: What is your favorite Val meal?

Giulia: The beef-braised ravioli with alfredo sauce! I’ve recently discovered Grab-N-Go though, and I really like it. I also love any dessert with M&Ms.

Thank you for reading! Giulia wants to add that she finally made it on the @potatogram Instagram, which features Potato, the dog of a staff member on campus. She is very proud. Please send an email (to either me or her) if you have any questions!