What do you think about when you hear the word “home”? What about the word “migration,” or “belonging”? What do you think other people associate with these words? These are some of the questions I explored my senior year. And, in typical Mount Holyoke fashion, my exploration spilled out of the classroom and into completely unexpected spaces.
Over the spring semester, my friend Anya Nandkeolyar ’19 and I designed, created and exhibited an art installation in the Blanchard Art Gallery, which ran April 15–24. We sourced materials from places we’d never been and found support all over campus.
At Mount Holyoke, the first of the powerful Seven Sisters colleges, we strive to be a model of an inclusive, worldly community of effective intellectuals. We find strength in our individual and collective voices — and joy in our traditions and connections to one another. Mount Holyoke’s deep, discerning approach to educating new generations of students makes us a singular force for good in the world. Our powerful, engaged network of alumnae makes us an enduring force for positive change in the world.
The world needs Mount Holyoke graduates — who share the conviction and readiness to make their lives stand for something bigger — now more than ever.
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My senior year of high school, I made two of the most important decisions of my life. The first was where to attend college. The second was to share a secret I’d harbored since age 11.
I spent most of my first car ride to Mount Holyoke kicking the back of my stepdad’s seat. No, really, I was that terrible.
By the end of my junior year of high school, desperate to find the perfect fit, I had become a pro at touring colleges. Nearly every weekend, our itineraries filled with different schools to visit, my family hopped in the car and drove all around New England. After I showed interest in gender-minority institutions and absolutely fell in love with Bryn Mawr, Wellesley and Smith colleges, my parents suggested that we go check out Mount Holyoke.
“No,” I insisted, picturing the words “Holy Oak” in my head. “I won’t go to a religiously affiliated school.”
Before taking the fall 2018 course Making the Past: Geosciences in the Makerspace, I had never stepped foot in the Mount Holyoke Makerspace (which has since been relocated, expanded and renamed the Fimbel Maker & Innovation Lab).
I had heard about the makerspace through advertisements for staff-led events and from friends who had taken classes there. I also knew that it was different from makerspaces at other colleges, which friends reported were only available to people with certain majors or were so restrictive that it was nearly impossible to reserve a time to use the equipment. I knew that ours was accessible for all Mount Holyoke students. I’d just never had a reason to use it. Until I signed up for a 100-level class. Part lecture, part design workshop, the class promised to explore dinosaurs and ancient species by utilizing high-tech equipment, which sounded like an intriguing combination.