Meet Lanie Richards ’21, who hails from Orange Park, Florida. Majoring in psychology and education, she was drawn to Mount Holyoke because of its academic rigor as well as it’s welcoming community. On campus, she’s also a research assistant in the Office of Advancement, a member of the MHC Rugby Football Club and an SGA Senator for the Rugby team.
When you support Student Life through The Mount Holyoke Fund, you help build a thriving community of student scholars. You provide opportunities to explore new interests and pursue excellence — both in and out of the classroom. You support students like Lanie.
Your gift. Your choice. Choose your destination.
Name: Lanie Richards ’21
Hometown: Orange Park, FL
Majors: Psychology and Education
Why did you choose Mount Holyoke?
I chose Mount Holyoke because I wanted to live in a community that encouraged me to be my best, and for my peers to do their best. In large universities there is often a “competitive” nature in the classroom, and even on the campus, that I did not want for my college experience. Mount Holyoke accurately advertises our welcoming and accepting community, where everyone can do their best to thrive.
What do you value most about your Mount Holyoke education? How has this community helped you thrive?
I value the diversity I see on campus. People from all walks of life contribute to the beautiful mesh of students we have. I want to go into the educational field after graduation and will be working in a highly diverse field, and it feels like Mount Holyoke is preparing me for that.
What do you hope to do after you graduate from MHC, and how do you think your MHC education will serve you in this pursuit?
After I graduate, my plan is to work within the field of education. I want to teach, I want to do curriculum research and development, and I want to enact change in the public school system that will benefit the generations to come. Mount Holyoke has been a wonderful place for me to start my journey. The teacher licensure program, the ample volunteer opportunities in educational settings, and the support from peers and professors is unbelievable.
What is one thing you would want to say to an alum who donated to MHC?
I would love to say thank you for making my dream a reality. College, especially a private institution, was always a dream that I was never sure that I could afford. Through the donations to The Mount Holyoke Fund, I have amazing financial aid that allows me to take advantage of the wonderful academic and extracurricular activities that MHC offers. Not to mention, I get to live on one of the most beautiful campuses I have ever seen. So, thank you, from the bottom of my heart.
What cocurricular activities or organizations are you involved with on campus?
I am a member of the Mount Holyoke Rugby Football Club, which participates in rugby year round. We have our regular season in the fall and a tournament season in the spring. Our team is composed of students from all kinds of athletic backgrounds, and we welcome everyone. I am also the Student Government Senator for the rugby team. Each week, Senate meets to discuss action plans for creating a better campus and then brings forth our questions and plans to the administration on behalf of our constituents.
Last semester I started a volunteer position at Holyoke High School, where I got to work with students as a peer discussion facilitator and a tutor. Students would bring forth areas of confusion in their current course work and they would work together to resolve those points of confusion. I was fortunate to collaborate with a wonderful group of 10th graders, and I know they're going to continue working hard.
Which of your cocurricular activities has been most impactful? What skills have you learned from your experiences?
My time with the rugby team has been life changing. I can honestly say that from day one, I had a new friend group and a new family. I have had the wonderful opportunity to connect with students outside my class year, outside my major and thousands of miles from my home. Rugby has connected me with friends I may not have made otherwise, and I am forever grateful.