Choose a destination. Choose Mika ’19.

October 22, 2018 at 10:17 AM

Mika-Butin-19

Are you interested in supporting sports and athletics at Mount Holyoke? Or investing in experiential internships or research opportunities? Or maybe you are passionate about providing scholarship aid to students? By choosing a destination — such as Athletics, The Lynk & Career Preparedness or Scholarships — for your gift through The Mount Holyoke Fund, you support incredible students like Mika Butin ’19.

Mika, a senior sociology major and education minor who hails from eastern Massachusetts, loved her Lynk summer internship experience and is grateful for the resources that Mount Holyoke has provided. Like many Mount Holyoke students, Mika receives need-based scholarships and realizes how vital scholarships are in propelling students towards their goals. “They allowed me to be at an institution I did not think that I could afford, but still knew I was intellectually capable of thriving at,” she reflects. “Because I was given that initial ability to attend Mount Holyoke, so many doors have opened and I have come into so many opportunities that I would’ve missed otherwise. Mount Holyoke really empowered me academically, personally, and in pursuit of my career.”

Her Lynk summer proved to be the bridge between her academic life and career passions. Formerly captain of Mount Holyoke’s basketball team, Mika has been passionate about athletics and fitness for years — she dabbled in crossfit following a 12-year basketball career, then segued into olympic weightlifting and spent the summer of 2017 training at the Providence Barbell Club in Rhode Island. She first discovered her passion for athletics in middle school, when she joined the basketball team. Since then, she says, it’s been an amazing outlet to decompress and a place to find community and support. Her time with the Mount Holyoke Lyons was enriched by the companionship and camaraderie she found in her team.

This past summer, thanks to her Lynk internship funding, Mika returned to the Barbell Club where she had previously trained, this time as a coach and trainer. This experience provided her with the opportunity to not only coach, but also to travel with her team to national competitions. Now a commuter student juggling school work along with a full-time job, Mika believes her Lynk experience provided the crucial stepping stone between the world of academics and the workforce. After completing her Lynk internship, the Barbell Club offered Mika a position as Head Coach, which she accepted. For Mika, completing this internship was a crucial step toward attaining her career goals. “Going into something like athletics really requires previous knowledge,” she explains. “It’s not at all an area that you can just walk in off the streets and pick up the skills, but it’s also not an area where you necessarily learn the skills and habits in school”. Because of that, internships and training opportunities are not just important, but practically mandatory to break into the industry.

At Mount Holyoke, Mika was empowered by resources and mentors that inspired her to choose her destination and pursue a more unconventional path. What matters most to you?

Your gift. Your choice. Choose your destination.

Rachel Nix ’20

Written by Rachel Nix ’20

Rachel, a politics major and sociology minor, is a marketing assistant in the Office of Advancement and a contributor to the MHC Forever blog. Hailing from West Virginia, she serves on MHC’s Admissions and Financial Aid Advisory Committee, is deeply involved with social justice initiatives and loves spending her free time with friends, reading on the green or trying to pet Jorge, the goose.