How I Spent My Vacation: Students Share ‘Postcards’ via Summer at BMC Blog

Posted September 5th, 2013 at 11:15 am.

At the end of the 2012-13 academic year, the College Communications Office asked students to “send a postcard” from their summer internship or research experience. We received responses from students representing a diverse range of areas of study and exciting internships from around the world. Submissions were published throughout the summer on the Summer at BMC blog.

Here’s how some Bryn Mawr College students spent their summer:

Mikah Farbo '14 worked with children on the autism spectrum.

Mikah Farbo ’14 worked with children on the autism spectrum.

Through an Alumnae Regional Scholarship, psychology major Mikah Farbo ’15 worked with a psychologist who specializes in autism. She spent time in an autism support classroom, using ABA (applied behavior analysis) to teach children on the autism spectrum, and attended a national autism conference.

The Pensby Center welcomed its first interns: Alexis De La Rosa ’15 and Lauren Footman ’14. Both were involved in working with the papers of distinguished alumnae Evelyn Jones Rich ’54 as well as embarking on separate research projects. De La Rosa developed a survey on experiences of diversity and inclusion in social and academic settings at the College open to current students and alumnae/i. Footman delved into the research surrounding Rich’s papers, and began work on cataloging items from Perry House that eventually will be part of the Black Cultural Center.

Lianna Reed ’15, a political science and French major, served as a Human Rights Program intern at the Carter Center in Atlanta. Reed worked on a Carter Center project based in the Democratic Republic of the Congo on mining governance, and with coordinating delegates for a conference called the Human Rights Defenders’ Forum.

Alicia Makepeace ’14, knew some might question the reason behind her self-proclaimed summer of chemistry. “So what would motivate working eight-hour workdays, five days a week for ten weeks during the summer months?” she wrote.  The answers: compelling research, awesome lab mates, and a dedicated mentor — Assistant Professor of Chemistry, Jason Schmink.


Emily Adams '14 assisted with writing workshops for incarcerated teens.

Emily Adams ’14 assisted with writing workshops for incarcerated teens.

During her time in San Francisco at The Beat Within, an organization that offers writing workshops to incarcerated teens and then publishes their writing in a bi-weekly magazine, English major Emily Adams ’14  typed up and edited the handwritten pieces from the workshops. Adams also assisted with the printing and distribution of the magazine and office tasks, and used her fluency in Spanish to translate and edit works submitted in that language.

Ivana Wang ’15 shared the joys (and occasional — but temporary! — setbacks) of DNA research at Fox Chase Cancer Research Center. Ever-practical over the course of her research, Wang, a biology major, wrote: “Perhaps the most important lesson I learned so far is experiments don’t work 90% of the time, and I’ve learned to accept that.”

History of art major Sarah Ferrieri ’15 spent her summer at art camp — specifically with Kala Art Institute’s Camp Kala Program. She worked with three art instructors and practicing artists to foster a creative and pleasant atmosphere to teach elementary, middle, and high school students in a series of one week classes, each with a distinct theme and curriculum. Ferrieri said her favorite theme week was Graphic Novel, which explored self-publication through the lens of the graphic novel and zine formats.

On the path to find the newest bestseller, Creative Writing and English major Alicia Ramirez ’15 headed to New York City for an internship with the Doris S. Michaels Literary Agency. After several rewarding publishing industry seminars, Ramirez got to work on pitch letters. Of the experience, she wrote, “I have grown tremendously and am thankful for all the mentorship I have been given.”

Gizem Aydin '14 interned at the Turkish Embassy in Moscow.

Gizem Aydin ’14 interned at the Turkish Embassy in Moscow.

Economics major Gizem Aydin ’14 worked in the Office of the Commercial Counselor in the Turkish Embassy in Moscow. Aydin assisted with daily office tasks, such as answering phones and entering data on spreadsheet documents. She also followed up on weekly e-mails that gave information about new economic activities, people who are looking for jobs, and companies with different proposal documents.

During an archaeological dig at Sant’Omobono, located in central Rome, classical languages major Zoe Fox ’14 excavated “everything from intact medieval clay vessels, to waterlogged archaic Roman material far below street level, to fascist orange juice bottles.” The site, a religious sanctuary in the Archaic and Republican periods, was occupied throughout the Middle Ages, rediscovered and first excavated in the Fascist era. Of the dig, Fox wrote, “It’s very exhausting, extremely hot, and I’ve pickaxed through more dirt than I thought possible, but it’s worth every second to discover so many amazing artifacts!”

The Tri-Co research group of Katie McCormick ’13, Alex Mannix, ’15, Helen Felker ’16 (HC), and Caroline Batten ’14 (SC) conducted research in Oaxaca, Mexico with Tri-co Assistant Professor of Linguistics, Brook Lillehaugen. Their work centers on the growing academic and cultural movement for the celebration and dissemination of  Zapotec, an indigenous language of southern Mexico.

A group of 11 Bryn Mawr students including Heidi Gay ’15, Grace Barlow ’14, Rayna Allonce ’15, and Isabelle Wozniak ’15, spent six weeks of their summer in Avignon, France, with the College’s Institut d’études françaises d’Avignon.

Political science major Lauren Buckheit ’15 worked on social media and website management for CeaseFirePA, a non-profit organization dedicated to taking a stand against gun violence. She also worked on organizing donations and fundraising for the CeaseFirePA Education Project. “…[F]undraising is key to keeping a non-profit open and knowing I was making a difference made the at times tedious work that much easier,” she wrote.


Eri Arai ’16 with Kenichiro Sasae, Japanese Ambassador to the United States

Eri Arai ’16 with Kenichiro Sasae, Japanese Ambassador to the United States

Eri Arai ’16 spent her summer at the Japan-U.S. Friendship Commission, a small federal agency in Washington D.C. where she helped coordinate and publicize the Friendship Blossoms Initiative — a public-private gift of 3,000 dogwood trees to the people of Japan in reciprocation of Japan’s gift of 3,000 cherry blossoms to the people of the United States 100 years ago. Arai also got to sit in on Congressional meetings on Capitol Hill, meet the Japanese Ambassador to the U.S. at his residence, shadow meetings with Japanese Ministers at the embassy, and work with Foreign Service officers.

As an Undergraduate Summer Clinical Research fellow at The Johns Hopkins University Hospital in Baltimore, psychology major and pre-med-focused Shayoni Nag ’16 worked as a part of the clinical research team in the plastic surgery department under the guidance of Dr. Justin Sacks. Her research involved examining patient outcomes after mastectomy and breast reconstruction.

Sociology major Lisa Merrick ’14 interned in the Department of College and Career Readiness of the Office of Academic Programming and Support in the central office of D.C. Public Schools. Merrick had the opportunity to hear from Chancellor Kaya Henderson about the district goals for public schools to reach by 2017, helped distribute diplomas to a number of Washington high schools, and interacted with deputy chiefs of other departments in the Central Office.

Samone Rowe '14 spent her summer in Special Collections.

Samone Rowe ’14 spent her summer in Special Collections.

Samone Rowe ’14, a history of art major, spent a summer in Special Collections at the College. Rowe assisted the Art and Artifacts Collection gather, photograph, and catalog materials for an exhibit on the Deanery, the residence of college founder M. Carey Thomas and her partner, Mary Garrett, for an exhibit targeted for 2015. She also worked on a digital exhibit surrounding student scrapbooks and the College’s history for the Albert M. Greenfield Digital Center for the History of Women’s Education. She wrote, “[a]s I have never built an exhibit before–let alone a digital one–the process is new and challenging, but exciting all the same.”

History major Wei Lu ’15 taught American history at Summerbridge Hong Kong, a non-profit organization that aims to help underprivileged secondary school students in Hong Kong  study English. “We teachers not only teach them various academic classes, but also teach sports/electives (such as badminton and dance), do different activities with students, and organize special events for students,” she wrote.

“I am learning something new at my internship nearly every second!” wrote Ivy Drexel ’14, a linguistics and English major.  As part of the Reference team at the National Archives II in College Park, MD, Drexel dealt primarily with U.S. Navy records from WWII responding to letters from veterans and researchers who are looking for various action reports, war diaries, and deck logs from naval vessels involved in the war.

Filed under: BMC Homepage Headlines,Students,Uncategorized by Alyssa Banotai

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