Welcome to Senior Symposium! Today we celebrate the many extraordinary achievements of the Class of 2021 -- their hard work, perseverance, and brilliance! We have designed this year’s Senior Symposium as a virtual, day-long event. We have 132 students presenting from all over the world on 34 panels in almost every discipline and major offered at Mount Holyoke. Seniors are conducting research on gene therapy, climate change, and preparing for the next pandemic. They are writing theses and capstone projects on the gothic, queer studies, persistent multi-robot formations, reproductive health, and the Chicago Teachers Union. They have created new choreography, novellas, short films, and sustainable designs for local New England farms. We also have students presenting about their LYNK and Nexus opportunities on a series of panels at lunchtime that we call mini LEAP.

Explore the schedule below to see all of the remarkable intellectual and creative accomplishments that Mount Holyoke students have achieved, even in the most challenging of times. A special thanks to the faculty and staff who have advised and supported the Class of 2021 in their endeavors.

Congratulations in advance to our Seniors who are presenting today and to all of our beloved students in the Class of 2021.

The 2021 Senior Symposium will be presented via synchronous Zoom panels. Video links will be available in the Panel information 10 minutes prior to the panel start.

The download a pdf of the schedule click here. A full schedule can also be downloaded and printed by clicking the print icon.

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Friday, April 16 • 12:00pm - 1:00pm
LEAP - Overcoming Challenges of Remote Biological Data Collection and Analysis

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The importance of biologically-based research is relevant to countless fields and ever-expanding. Our internship experiences involved collecting, analyzing, and synthesizing data on a variety of subjects, all while coping with the challenges of remote research and education during a pandemic. Through our projects this past summer we explored environmental preservation, food safety, fruit fly genetics, as well as marine mammalian behavior. We each experienced a variety of challenges that taught us to adapt quickly, think critically, and develop leadership skills. Creating new methods, working with new tools, and managing time on our own pushed us all to become stronger, independent scientists. Join us to learn about overcoming the challenges of remote biology research.


Claire Gabel

Investigating the optimal altitudinal range of wild avocado trees in Monteverde
O. monteverdensis is an endangered species that produces fruit similar to a wild avocado. However, the fate of O. monteverdensis doesn’t look great, especially because many of its saplings appear to be shrinking each year, as I found this past summer. With global warming, it is... Read More →

Jamie Day

Evaluating the Feasibility of Bacteria Detection in Home Setting using a Smartphone
Ever wonder if you could detect harmful bacteria in your food without the need for expensive lab equipment? As a Remote Intern at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, I was tasked with evaluating the feasibility of bacteria detection in a home setting using a smartphone microscope... Read More →

Sophia Trent

Priceless Pests: What Fruit Flies Can Teach Us
Fruit flies. Though typically considered irritating household pests, the humble fruit fly has done more for the field of genetics than arguably any other organism. This past summer, I was able to experience firsthand what makes this little insect so versatile by working with Dr. Jennifer... Read More →

Megan Dear

Marine Mammal Behavior Towards Different Stimuli
Last summer I was a Mammal Behavior and Cognition Intern for Dr. Heather Hill, a psychology professor at St. Mary’s University in San Antonio, Texas. I worked with datasets and videos from bottlenose dolphin and beluga whale studies to get the data ready for publication. My main... Read More →

Friday April 16, 2021 12:00pm - 1:00pm EDT
Mount Holyoke College
  • Presider TBD