As Smith College "warden," Scales served as the dean of students, in charge of housing students, chaperoning on-campus activities, and arranging guest visits to the College. In addition, Scales chaired the committee of social activities and was a member of the conference committee. Scales was extremely dedicated to improving the campus atmosphere for students, and was also Dean of Women at Carnegie Institute of Technology.
In 1936, Smith College showed their appreciation for all that she had done for the school by naming one of the new dormitories the Laura Scales House. One of the quotes she used throughout her life was that "education was the backbone of living. It makes the world interesting."
Scales died in 1990 at the age of 110, one of the oldest persons in the world at the time.