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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 Kaussar Rahman

Kaussar Rahman

Biology Major and Nexus in Educational Policy
The Privatization of Education in Ghana: the Case of Omega School Franchise
During my internship, I worked with the Ghana National Education Campaign Coalition (GNECC), a network of civil society organizations that invest in promoting quality basic education for all students. During my time at GNECC, I learned how the privatization of education influences the quality, affordability, and access of basic education for all students. Within a few years, the privatization of education in Ghana has increased rapidly. Private companies worldwide are coming into Ghana, establishing private schools in rural areas and prompting parents to pay low school fees. This is a good initiative; however, the ways in which these companies operate the schools is poor. In addition, the intentions of these companies are to make profit from improvised communities who can’t afford governmental-based school fees. In my presentation, I will focus on the Omega School Franchise, which is a private company that promised to invest in building quality and affordable schools in rural areas. However, their main motive is to make profit from impoverished communities. Are these private companies doing more harm than good? While at GNECC, I learned how to navigate my voice and opinions in a large crowd and with that I have developed better leadership skills that I will carry on outside the gates of Mount Holyoke College.