Anyone who knows me knows that I am a fierce Smith Alum. At the tender age of 18, I fell hopelessly and helplessly in love with Smith College, an all women’s college in Massachusetts. In my time there, I met amazing women, took challenging classes, and learned how to be a general badass—all thanks to Smith.
One of the many cool things about Smith was its housing system. Back in my day, Smithies didn’t live in dorms, we lived in houses with their own kitchen and house staff. Some might argue that this was ridiculously pampered, but I argue that it gave young women a strong sense of community on their first foray out of the nest. Your house was your home, and most of us have very fond memories of our house.
I am a Chapinite. Chapin house had me at hello. A few months ago, while perusing the Smith College Facebook photo album, I saw a picture of my beloved Chapin. I got nostalgic, and I tagged all my friends trying to approximate where their rooms had been. My friends got notices that they had been tagged, they in turn tagged others. Now, every time someone new is tagged, I get a Facebook notice. I check to see which picture Facebook is referring to, my beloved Chapin pops up, and I get all nostalgic all over again.
My Smith love fest aside, I’m sure you are all wondering what this MEANS. This is a brilliant way for colleges and universities (that are notoriously looking for donations from alums) to make connections with students who have long left their campuses. The more that they can to do reinforce their brand with these potentially lucrative and much needed donors, the better. It is easy, inexpensive, and uses the tools that Facebook already provides.
Granted, I don’t think that Smith is actually employing this as a tactic. Perhaps I am naive, but I think this came about from some rabid Smith College brand fans (ahem…) I want Smith to post more pictures so I can tag myself and my friends—How about a nice picture of Seelye where I took most of my classes? Or Neilson Library where my roommate and I spent many a late night studying? I would be tagging like a mad woman, connecting me and my friends to the college we all still love so much.