New-Student Focus 2017

Meet a sampling of the students who joined the Mount Holyoke Community in 2017.

The incoming class as a whole came to campus from as far away as China and as near as South Hadley. They numbered an even 600, including 33 transfer students and 21 Frances Perkins scholars, the College’s program for women 25 years and older who have experienced an interruption in their education.

They hail from 47 states and 45 countries. Among their ranks are scientists, poets, filmmakers, athletes and activists. With resumes that include impressive internships (at the Afghanistan Parliament), MVP awards (for high school wrestling in New York City), scientific journal publications (for research on woodpeckers) and short film production (on fracking in Oklahoma). And with interests in beekeeping, aeronautics, taekwondo, freediving, underwater cinematography, outrigger canoeing and hip-hop dance.


Photo of Maya Fontanez ’21
“I chose Mount Holyoke because it seems like I will be accepted for who I am. I am impressed with the focus on helping students develop leadership skills.”
Photo of Madelaine (Lainie) LaRonde ’20
“Mount Holyoke is mysterious yet welcoming — I feel as though there are a million quirky things and people to discover, and all of them will be wonderful.”
Photo of Leora Ferrari ’21
“I believe that Mount Holyoke will give me an outstanding education in science that no other college could match.”
Photo of Unwanaabasi Abasiurua ’21
“My ultimate goal is to be a psycholinguist, but I definitely want to teach for a bit. I’m also very interested in translation and interpretation.”
Photo of Tumi Moloto ’20
“The academics were what intrigued me initially, but I love MHC’s commitment to social change and the betterment of society.”
Photo of Key Estime ’21
“There is a feeling of intense purpose and collaboration on the campus. I have felt very supported as a first-generation, low-income student.”
Photo of Waner (Sylvia) Zhou ’21
“I chose MHC because I want to make friends with strong, confident, independent women and be surrounded by an inclusive and supportive atmosphere.”
Photo of Noor Aftab ’21
“I’m really aiming to be an astronomer or an astrophysicist. When I look up at the sky, I’m constantly reminded of how staggering our universe is.”
Photo of Virginia Butt ’21
“Mount Holyoke was the first campus that truly felt diverse and supportive to me. The dedication the school has to empowering women deeply spoke to me.”