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At LEAP, nearly 300 Mount Holyoke students present about their internships and research experiences. You will hear from future policy makers, activists, entrepeneurs, data scientists, teachers, researchers, and market analysts. Most will tell stories of unmitigated success and transformative learning. Others will share details of unexpected challenges they faced, and how they were required to shift and adapt in response. Students worked in 42 countries in every imaginable field. They will discuss important issues of social justice, relate how they met challenges of communication and expression in new contexts, and talk about how to find and succeed in summer internships.

LEAP is designed to give students who aspire to undertake internships and summer research the opportunity to learn from their peers. It is also for the whole Mount Holyoke community where family, friends, faculty, staff and our alumnae come together to celebrate the work and contributions of the presenters.

We are hugely impressed by students in College 211 and inspired by their individual success and collective learning. Their work in bringing the LEAP Symposium to fruition was exceptional. We thank the faculty, staff, alumnae, donors, and internship and research providers whose contributions have make this event possible.

LEAP presenters: Congratulations.
avatar for Catherine


Anthropology Major
An Introduction to Herbal Medicine in Monteverde, Costa Rica
In the face of globalizing biomedicalization, traditional medicinal plant use remains in practice throughout Costa Rica. In Monteverde, both biomedical technologies and herbal medicine exist simultaneously, providing two different interpretive frameworks which residents utilize in their navigation of health and illness. During my internship at the Monteverde Institute in Costa Rica, I gained a greater understanding of local medicinal plant usage and how it has come to coexist with other forms of medicine in Monteverde. Focusing on the development of the Institute’s medicinal plant garden, my work involved garden maintenance, investigating the history of plant use among community members, and assisting locals with the implementation and expansion of their own plots. Throughout my experience, I connected with new people and places, improved my Spanish language skills, and acquired a global-local perspective on health and medicine beyond Western biomedical structures.