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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 Madelaine  McAlister-Raeburn

Madelaine McAlister-Raeburn

Biology and Music Major
Fear and Loathing and Antibiotic Resistance
This summer, the Lynk funding enabled me to work in a lab in my hometown in the Biology department of Eastern Michigan University. The project I worked on was EMU’s application of the Small World Initiative, a program started by Yale University in 2012. The SWI is an effort at “crowdfunding antibiotic resistance," by instituting the testing of soil samples for antibiotic activity into introductory biology courses, to teach fundamental microbiology techniques in the lab in a meaningful context. I worked with my PI to work through kinks in the process to improve its implementation the following academic year, testing new samples and analyzing older data in doing so. The biggest challenges for me were all internal, related to working with certain mental health issues, building confidence in a professional lab setting, and realizing what adult life in this discipline can look like.