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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 Alexandra


Chemistry Major
Atmospheric Chemistry: Understanding Aerosol Particles and How They Are Affected by Our Changing Environment
Aerosol particles play an important role in Earth’s atmosphere. Clay and mineral dust aerosol particles are of particular interest, and scientists are currently researching these particles to better understand their optical properties. This past summer I conducted research at the University of New Hampshire studying these properties. Specifically, I worked to determine particle size, shape and surface area. Relative humidity (RH) was also manipulated to observe the effects of changing the particles’ surrounding environment. Optical measurements were made using a differential mobility analyzer (DMA), condensation particle counter (CPC), cavity ring-down spectroscopy (CRD) and Brunauer-Emmett-Teller (BET) methods. Researchers use these results to make connections to broader applications, including climate change. This internship exposed me to new physical/analytical chemistry instrumentation and techniques, and provided me with the opportunity to conduct research in a graduate school setting within a field of chemistry that I plan to pursue in my future.