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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.

Izzy Putnal

English Major
Hands in the Dirt: Connecting People and Food on Book & Plow Farm
Over the summer, Izzy worked on Book & Plow Farm in Amherst, MA. She worked with five other crew members to grow fruits, vegetables, and flowers for Amherst College and the larger Amherst community. Working on the farm, she seeded, planted, cared for, harvested, and delivered vegetables grown on the site. Since the farm has a commitment to long-term sustainability, the experience particularly focused on ethical interactions between people, land, and food. At Book & Plow, Izzy was able to take part in food production that centered around environmentally conscious methods of farming and collaborative labor. She met other farmers in the valley who shared their difficulties of making a living out of organic, small-scale food production in an age of factory farming and monoculture. After witnessing the food waste that occurred on the farm, she worked with the Survival Center in Amherst to develop a system of delivering extra or unsellable food to the Center.