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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 Shirley Xu

Shirley Xu

Statistics Major and Nexus in Data Science
Duplicate or Not? It’s Your Call.
When given "50 College Street MHC 1234”, “50 College St, Mt. Holyoke College, 1234”, and “50 College Street, Mount Holyoke College 1234”, we would probably realize that the three records of address refer to the same place simultaneously. But how would you train a machine to help it identify the same information formatted in different ways? What is the secret sauce for machine learning? 
This summer, Shirley interned at Zumata, a travel technology company based in Singapore. During her internship, Shirley was able to apply her statistics and programming skills and utilize open-source tools to contribute to ongoing machine learning projects at Zumata. In this presentation, Shirley will talk about pros and cons of working for a start-up company, the challenges she faced, and the personal qualities and skills that would make employees stand out in the workplace.