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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.

Sofia Elisa Rivera

International Relations Major
Superhuman Service and the People Behind Them
The American Foreign Service Association (AFSA), the professional association and labor union of the United States Foreign Service, recognises and awards the exemplary service of its fellows each year. As the Awards and Outreach intern this past summer, I got to meet and get to know the amazing individuals regarded as the best the State Department has. From Ambassador Nancy Powell to MHC alumna Rene Gutel, learning of their actions to merit such prestigious recognition from their community made them seem above mere mortals. However, they are not, and that made all the difference in the end of my summer. In my presentation, I will share my personal experience in working in a non-profit organization, what I learned about the Foreign Service and State Department culture, and how individuals can bring change to one of the most important agencies in the federal government.