100 Things to Explore

80. Hobart's oldest active fraternity, the Kappa Alpha Society, was chartered in 1844 as the third chapter in the nation. The first William Smith sorority, Theta Phi Alpha, was founded in 2017.

Abbe Center

81. Since 2007, the Abbe Center for Jewish Life has been home to the Colleges' Hillel program and a magnet for students of all faiths. Situated directly across the street from Temple Beth-El, the Abbe Center - made possible through the generosity of former Trustee Richard K. Abbe '92, P'19 - serves as a residence hall and hub for Jewish life on campus. Features of the Abbe Center include the Tina Wasserman Kosher Kitchen and the Wasserman Garden of Quiet Repose, named in honor of Trustee Dr. Richard L. Wasserman '70 and his wife Tina, a bestselling cookbook author who is an expert on the Jewish diaspora. Programming includes Friday night Shabbat dinners, Rosh Hashanah Eve dinner, the pre-fast dinner before Yom Kippur, bagel brunches, a Passover Seder, Jewish cooking classes, dinners with guest speakers and more.

Muslim Center

82. In 2013, the Colleges opened the Muslim Student Center, located in Stewardson House on South Main Street. With the nearest mosques in Rochester and Syracuse, the center was created to provide a space that enriches the religious and cultural diversity on campus, as well as a place to pray that is easy to access. In the fall of 2019, at the request of students for a more centrally located space, the center was moved to Medbery Hall. The new location, which includes two wudu stations and a separate prayer room, hosts Friday Prayers and frequent discussions.

83. Since 2011, the Trias Residency has brought nine internationally renowned writers to campus who have led workshops, delivered public readings and invited colleagues to read from their own work and teach master classes with student writers.


Tom Piazza (2011-12)
Mary Gaitskill (2012-13)
Piotr Sommer (2013-14)
Chris Abani (2014-15)
Mary Ruefle (2015-16)
Jeff VanderMeer (2016-17)
John D'Agata '95 (2017-18)
Donald Ravel (2018-19)
Lidia Yuknavitch (2019-20)

Between them, Trias Residents have received a PEN Beyond the Margins Award, the PEN Hemingway Book Prize, a Whiting Writers' Award, a Grammy Award, a Nebula Award, and National Endowment for the Arts and Guggenheim Foundation fellowships.

Named for Peter Trias '70, the Residency is a unique program among undergraduate institutions, designed to give distinguished writers time to write while sharing their craft and experience with promising HWS students and the Geneva community.

84. In 2017, the Gearan Center for the Performing Arts earned LEED Gold from the U.S. Green Building Council, making it the first building on campus to receive an official LEED certification. The Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Green Building Rating System is the most popular and widely used green building system globally.


85. The HWS LGBTQ+ Resource Center, which opened in the fall of 2017, sponsored the Colleges' first Lavender Graduation Ceremony in 2019, celebrating graduating seniors who identify as queer or gender-nonconforming.