I will also highlight how Holicow used human-centered design along with a social justice lens to spark change in their communities while also negotiating the parameters of existing within a developing country. The Ulman Foundation provides support services for young adults and their loved ones affected by cancer. Each summer, they organize cross-country run and ride teams comprised of college-aged students who come together to raise money and awareness for the foundation.
After spending seven weeks running and volunteering alongside a team of twenty-seven individuals, who have all in some way been affected by cancer, I was reminded of the kindness and beauty that exist in the world. I will discuss the ways in which my teammates and I were able to inspire hope and build a community of support while running across the country. I will also reflect on the new perspectives I gained from this experience regarding life, death, and the things in between.
During our six weeks there, we organized and taught an educational marine science summer camp for the schoolchildren of San Pedro. We also had the opportunity to participate in research investigating the coral reefs, mangroves, and local ecoidentities with our Smith professors.
My presentation will focus on the integral narrative of climate change within my experiences teaching our marine science summer camp and interacting with Belizean schoolchildren and the community. We are not only researchers from Smith College, but we are a community team with Project Coach, New North Citizens Council, and community members and organizations.
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Over the summer, I worked as the lead researcher on the Documentation and Data Team. My presentation will introduce the principle of PAR, explain how I led our data team, detail key findings from our research, and briefly describe our plans to pilot solutions. I will also talk about how this work has impacted and changed my own trajectory at Smith College and after graduation. This past summer, I used my Praxis Grant to live in Berlin, Germany and work for an organization, Girls Gearing Up, which provides the only international leadership academy in Europe for girls. I worked with thirty-one girls, aged , from five continents and twelve different countries.
The intensive program is intended to equip girls with leadership skills, grow in their confidence, and connect them to inspirational female role-models and peers from around the world. Because I study Education and Women and Gender Studies at Smith, the intersections of these two subjects in my summer work was deeply meaningful for both myself and the young people in the program. As a Smith student, I am drawn to leadership opportunities that empower young women.
This experience has inspired me to continue the work of building a new generation of young female leaders through a career in education. During the summer of , I engaged in a fellowship with Divest Ed, a climate action nonprofit in Cambridge, MA working to support university fossil fuel divestment campaigns.
I worked on a team of eight students to plan the beginning stages of a series of coordinated direct actions of the fossil fuel divestment movement at colleges across the US. In this presentation, I will reflect on what I learned about organizing through my experience building infrastructure for coordinating a movement, as well as the personally transformative experiences of attending and leading trainings for campus organizers. Through this fellowship, I made lasting connections with student organizers for fossil fuel divestment at campuses across the country and got to see what organizing work in the nonprofit sector can look like.
I have already been able to apply some of the skills in workshop facilitation that I learned this summer to my organizing with Divest Smith College, and I look forward to perhaps pursuing a career that involves sharing these kinds of skills with peers. I will share how my experience interning at Planned Parenthood during a particularly critical time in the fight for reproductive rights enabled me to apply the writing and research skills I have developed at Smith while also teaching me important lessons about nonprofit work and health care access.
I will also critically reflect on the impact my internship has had on my career goals and the lens through which I view social justice work. I will review my experience as an undergraduate intern at the Disability Law Center DLC , the Protection and Advocacy agency for individuals with disabilities for the state of Massachusetts. During my ten weeks, I engaged with legislation, monitoring, investigation, and case work. More specifically, I worked on an amicus brief regarding the rights of blind jurors with law fellows, the attorneys at DLC, and co-counsel with the National Federation for the Blind.
Also, I had the opportunity to research and draft legislative testimony for the various disability related bills in the Massachusetts state legislature.
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This internship developed my writing capacity, exposed me to new facets of the disability rights movement, and encouraged me to pursue a career in disability law in the future. Further, I will focus on how the work we did during these weeks had larger implications than I had truly anticipated. Under the supervision of passionate attorneys, I was trusted to do some of the necessary hard work in my short time with the organization.
I was included in site visits to ascertain compliance. I participated in priority setting community outreach forums where the organization heard concerns from the widely varied needs of the disability community. Overall, I was able to get a look into the complicated networks of disability work; actively working to make the systems for this community better for all.
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For eight weeks, I was involved in a multitude of responsibilities from translating, proposal writing to data analysis. Working at GTA allowed me to get familiar with the work culture in Nepal and make strong professional connections. My experiences of both accomplishment at times and frustrations with situations I encountered during my internship taught me a lot.
As I return for this semester, I am reminded about why I wanted to pursue a career in public health in the first place and my aspirations have bolstered. My teachers, Valentyna and Lyudmila, taught me the fundamentals of the Ukrainian language, but the lessons that I remember the most are those that emerged from conversations about my reflections of Ukraine formed on excursions around and outside of Kyiv.
The different conceptions of Ukrainian identity between people such as my host dad, a native Russian speaker who fled to Kyiv from his war-torn hometown in eastern Ukraine, and staunchly Ukrainian-speaking western Ukrainian college students forced me to understand Ukrainian identity beyond concrete markers, such as language. As a Russian, East European, and Eurasian Studies major who seeks to pursue a career in the Foreign Service, I embarked on my travels academically well informed. Prior to this summer, I had not only not spent time in Russia, but I had never really traveled abroad that much.
My presentation will be of interest to a broad audience, including those interested in contemporary Russian society, culture, and politics. Through these experiences, I was first able to further navigate the intersection between my computer science and philosophy majors. Then, I entered the interdisciplinary sphere of technology, ethics, and law, eventually shifting my attention toward work on tech policy.
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My perspectives on these disciplines, relative to one another, became more comprehensive and balanced as a result. Upon returning to Smith College, I have shared the ambitions, projects, and knowledge of the people I had the honor of meeting and learning from with my peers and professors.
Furthermore, I have cultivated a new sense of hope and optimism regarding my career path and, in general, my aspirations to contribute to future discussions of tech ethics and policy. Maggie X.
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I spent the second half of researching both legal and illegal international arms transfers in Washington, DC. I soon realized that these "open data" are not truly "open": extracting insight from the data was a challenging, meticulous, and time-consuming process that required policy expertise, domain knowledge, fluency in foreign languages, and access to proprietary information and technologies.
I will also reflect on the commonly-used data and technologies in policy research from a data ethics perspective. I worked with the bioprinting team of the lab, a group whose goals include working towards using 3D printing as a tool for generating functional, vascularized tissue. Over my months of work, I helped to optimize and test the generation of alginate hydrogel microparticles to serve as a model for cells when testing these innovative new printing techniques. This involved studying material properties, and how to use instruments like a 3D printer.
Having the unique opportunity to work in the Lewis Lab for two summers allowed me to witness the nativity and growth of a research question over time. I learned through first-hand experience how this process involves some wrestling with difficult concepts and frustration with experiments, but also the amazing reward of discovering a new key piece of information to drive your research forward.
My hope is to discuss my findings from this summer of work and also how my opportunity to participate in a research project over an extended period of time opened my eyes to the difficulties and joys of life as a researcher. For two months, I worked in a developmental biology lab studying early heart development in larval zebrafish, a commonly used model organism.
I was able to experience working in a research setting full time, and I got the chance to use advanced imaging techniques such as light sheet microscopy. In the lab, I was immersed in a collaborative, international scientific community, and I've come back to Smith with a greater sense of purpose.
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I believe that working at a large research institute complemented my education at a small liberal arts college, and I will discuss how my internship has shaped my goals both at Smith and in my future career. This summer I had the opportunity to expand my research interests in finding novel approaches to addressing the antibiotic resistance crisis as a research and development intern at Day Zero Diagnostics, a biotech startup at Harvard Life Labs.
I was tasked with data parsing and curating an extensive database of multi-drug resistant clinical isolates from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention CDC , performing detailed phenotypic analysis and growth optimization, and processing the strains through the company's proprietary blood protocol. The opportunity to work in a fast-paced biotech environment while being surrounded by brilliant and hard-working scientists, was an amazing and formative experience and only confirmed my passion for research.
What drives me to pursue research, is not only my deep curiosity and passion for biology, but also my passion for people. For ten weeks, I focused on finalizing the low-cost universal cervical cancer instructional apparatus LUCIA kits, which include a training device created specifically for cervical cancer screening in medically-underserved areas, nationally and globally. My experience last year allowed me to combine my interests in science and languages; however, my experience this year, while providing me with the opportunity to further expand my scientific skills, pushed me to grow on an individual level, reflect on my journey to and through college, and ultimately led me to think about life after graduation, and the role I want to play in science and medicine.
I began working there through the Urban Education Pathway program during J term of and continue to work in the same classroom today. I will discuss the importance of building relationships and long-term commitments in community-based learning as well as my experience of integrating theory and practice in the classroom. In particular, I will talk about how working in an ethnic studies classroom has shaped my understanding of multicultural education and education justice.
I hope that sharing my story will serve as a call to think critically about the responsibilities we at Smith have as part of an institution producing teachers and sending students out to work in local schools, as well as the ways we at Smith approach community engagement more broadly.
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Our team researches the challenges emerging adults from Springfield, MA face as they transition into adulthood. In this research, I gained priceless insight into the everyday lives of students, teachers, and parents who know first-hand the obstacles of living in an urban environment and attending inner-city schools. In researching the experiences of Springfield residents as well as mentoring high schoolers from Springfield on a weekly basis, I have gained an understanding of the power and necessity of out-of-school programming.
These experiences have also greatly shaped the future of my time at Smith because, in the hopes of becoming a high school English teacher, I now have a deeper understanding of the environments I wish to work in. I was able to return to a school where I had built a rapport with teachers, students, and staff over the January term as part of the Urban Education Fellowship. I was able to expand and build upon so many skills I began learning in January. My mentor, Donna Chin a Smith graduate herself , was an incredible support as I was given tasks that included running my own group lessons and developing lesson plans to then implement them to students that were learning English as a New Language.
The River School has such a diverse population of students from all over the world and I was able to work and see the cultural inclusivity that the school tries to provide for its students. Under their mentorship, I worked in a local school to assess children for potential visual and hearing impairments, engage in one-on-one tutoring with students who have learning differences, and helped to host, organize, and take notes for teacher-wide, community-based, teacher-trainings on Inclusive Education.
My experience has shaped my ideas on Inclusive Education and exposed me to the realities of how social, political, and cultural contexts greatly affect both the larger education system and the microcosm of the classroom. In this presentation, I will discuss my observations on how the social, political, and cultural context of Ghana affected curriculum, classroom style and structure, and therefore, the educational experiences of children in the schools that I worked, and discuss my experience working with CLED in their continual fight for Inclusive Education.
This summer, I spent six weeks as an intern in a public Montessori charter school in Washington D. I shadowed teachers in different primary classrooms and worked individually with students on specific learning goals set by their teachers. This experience allowed me to draw comparisons between Montessori and traditional elementary school methods.
Montessori education emphasizes the importance of individualizing instruction for each student and not measuring success based on the expectations of standardized tests.