Emma Murphy ’15

Image of Emma Murphy

Name: Emma Murphy ’15

Hometown: Manassas, Virginia

Majors: Politics and East Asian studies

Campus involvement/activities: I am most involved with WMHC, Mount Holyoke's campus radio station. As the assistant general manager this year, I was responsible for coordinating annual events such as our Radio Week Showcase with local bands. I also have a two-hour weekly show with my roommate from sophomore year. I am a Harriet Newhall Fellow in the Office of Admission, and I take part in Outing Club activities—my favorite is the Mountain Day hike!

What are you most proud of accomplishing at MHC? With the support of my professors and our amazing fellowships advisor, I received a Boren Scholarship from the U.S. government to study abroad in Japan during my junior year. The scholarship made it possible for me to pursue my dream of living with a host family and taking courses right in the middle of Kyoto for an incredible eight months.

Favorite course that you thought you might not like: I didn't have much interest in feminist political theory before my Introduction to Feminist Theory course, but it absolutely changed my outlook on society and forced me to think critically about the choices I make every day. The professor who taught the course was also incredibly understanding and engaging. It was one of my favorite courses at Mount Holyoke, period.

Best takeaway from internship or research experiences: My last internship, through the Mount Holyoke International Internship Program, led me to Monrovia, Liberia, where I worked with three other incredible Mount Holyoke students and 2011 Nobel Peace Prize Laureate Leymah Gbowee at her nonprofit. My time at the Gbowee Peace Foundation Africa, where providing scholarships to Liberian women was a top priority, illustrated one of Mount Holyoke's core principles: that educating and empowering women can transform societies. I am grateful to have had the opportunity to see this principle in action and to work with incredible women from every imaginable background.

Postgraduation plans: I'm currently interviewing for several jobs in the government and nonprofit sectors. As part of the Boren Scholarship I received to study abroad in Japan, I will need to complete a year of service with the U.S. government within three years of graduating.

What you'd tell a prospective student about MHC: Mount Holyoke is truly an unique, transformative experience. As a third-generation Mount Holyoke student, I grew up hearing stories about MHC traditions and the quality of the education available here. It wasn't until I stepped on campus and visited a class for myself, however, that I realized what a truly empowering environment Mount Holyoke creates. If you are looking for a place that will help you find your voice and where you will learn from women hailing from every imaginable corner of the world, this is it.