Feel free to contact department liaisons about any questions you may have.
Sarah Hayden '15Undecided concentrationNorth Smithfield, Rhode Island
Academic interests: Gender Studies, Spanish, Politics, and Marine Sciences.
Hobbies: I am currently captain of the cheerleading team at Mount Holyoke - it takes up a lot of my free time, but I love it! When I am not doing cheer-related things or school work, I love to cook, kayak, spend time outdoors, discuss politics, bond with cats, and watch the Bruins!
Favorite classes you've taken: I've really loved all of my classes so far, but two of my favorites were Political Ecology and Environmental Issues. Political Ecology was great because it exposed me to a completely different side of environmental studies, and I loved Environmental Issues because we got to discuss many different contemporary environmental problems and voice our opinions about them. It was a great experience because I got to learn about different viewpoints from the students and the professor, which broadened my perspectives on the issues.
Advice for first years: Talk to someone! Whether its a student, alum, professor, or just someone involved in the department, have a discussion with them. Everyone is so positive and encouraging and can give you great advice. I didn't really talk to anyone about the ES program during my first year, and I really regret it - I didn't realize how passionate I was about the program until sophomore year, but I wish that I had realized it and gotten involved sooner!
Shreeya Joshi '14Environment and Development concentrationKathmandu, Nepal
Academic interests: Renewable energy, sustainability, policy and political issues concerning environmental issues, influence of media on environmental issues.
Hobbies: Doing what the cool kids do - eat and sleep. Other activities include, dancing, reading, swimming, shopping, discovering new places and challenging myself to do things I have never done before aka snowboarding. Next on the list: skydiving.
Favorite classes: Political Ecology, Environmental Science, Environmental Issues, Science and Power in Environmental Governance
Advice for first years: All the views you have ever gathered on environmental issues are going to be challenged here. Don't panic. Just breathe. Unlearn everything and then learn it again. Soon you'll be challenging yourself.
Hannah Kyer '15Environmental Politics concentrationCoventry, CT
Academic interests: Environmental justice, sustainable architecture, activism, sustainable energy and conservation.
Hobbies: Photography, running, hiking
Favorite class: Environmental Science 200 with Kate Ballantine, Science and Power in Environmental Governance with Catherine Corson.
Advice for first years: The field of Environmental Studies is very broad so take a wide range of classes to learn your specific interests.
Brittany McDonald '14Conservation concentrationBelchertown, MassachusettsAcademic interests: I like to learn about how much North America's landscape has changed, global warming, and anything to do with protecting wildlife and natural resources.
Hobbies: I love hiking, biking, and being outdoors in general! I also enjoy trying new things and meeting new people!
Favorite classes: Conservation Biology, Environmental Issues
Advice for first years: If you are interested in nature, conservation, wildlife, or alternative energy technology (to name a few!) than you should look into becoming an ES major. There are so many wonderful classes and directions you can take so take a few classes! You could end up making a difference in helping to protect the beautiful planet we live on!
Erin Pierce '15Ecosystem Science concentrationLongmeadow, MA
Academic interests: All things ecology, specifically in the science of invasive species, restoration, and urban ecosystems. Secondary interests include environmental history and natural resource use and management.
Hobbies: A cappella, ultimate frisbee, hiking the Valley, and eating ice cream.
Favorite classes: They're in the Biology department, but Ecology made me want to be an Environmental Studies major and Conservation Biology confirmed it.
Advice for first years: ES is an interdisciplinary field. Just because a course isn't listed in the ES department doesn't mean it won't match your academic program. Take introductory level Biology, Geography, Geology, Chemistry, and History classes to supplement the rest of your ES courses. For me, learning about the intersection between Biology and ES helped me select Ecosystem Science as my concentration.
Melissa Saale '14Environment and Development concentration
Emma Singer '14Environmental Politics concentrationNorthfield, Minnesota
Academic interests: I love rocks! I'm really fascinated by the intersection between science and policy, so much of the time in our society there is a disconnect between what the science says and what the public and politicians hear. I'd love to be able to help bridge that gap.
Hobbies: On campus, I'm pretty extensively involved in MHC Divest, a campaign focused on asking the college to divest its endowment from the fossil fuel industry (ask me about it if you have any questions!) I'm also in orchestra, I play the cello and am the treasurer (so again if you have questions). Beyond that, I love to be outside, and have recently gotten really into baking.
Favorite classes: I really loved Political Ecology. It was the first ES class I ever took at Mount Holyoke and totally changed my perception of the world- I highly recommend it!
Advice for first years: Try a lot of things out! This department has a huge amount of variety to offer, and will work with you so that you can learn more about the things you love, so the best way to figure out if its for you is to just try a lot of different types of courses. And of course, ask a lot of questions- everyone here wants to support you and make sure that you get something meaningful out of your time here.
Kathryn Sullivan '15Natural History concentrationMarblehead, Massachusetts
Academic interests: nature, environmental education, experiential learning
Hobbies: outing club, ultimate frisbee, hiking, running, dogs
Favorite classes: ES 200, Nature Harmoniously Confused, Environmental Issues
Advice for first years: When in doubt, take to the woods!
Sarah Wheatley '15Geoscience concentrationSperryville, Virginia
Academic interests: I like studying mythology, languages, and weather.
Hobbies: Singing, acting, cycling, and boxing.
Favorite classes: My favorite ES class so far is the Evolution of North American Landsapes, taught by Lauret Savoy.
Advice for first years: Take several types of classes before deciding on a concentration.