“I am continually impressed at how much my professors care about me as a student and as a person. My first year at Bryn Mawr I wanted to apply for a summer internship, but I had no idea how to go about it. I asked my first-semester physics professor for some pointers on where to get started. And then I asked him to explain the differences between the programs I’d found. And then for some help on my resume. And then on my applications. And then for a letter of recommendation. Every time I went in with another question, I half expected him to say, ‘Can’t you do anything on your own?’ but he never did. Far from making me feel bad that I had absolutely no idea what I was doing, he made me feel brave for tackling something so new. I still remember another physics teacher’s reaction the following year when I told her during our physics lab that I had been offered an internship at Georgia Tech: she gasped, exclaimed congratulations, and gave me a big hug.
“The physics department at Bryn Mawr encourages students to do research off campus during the summer for the experience of working with other labs and physicists, and if there’s one thing Bryn Mawr understands, it’s the importance of diversity. My summer research internships helped me to grow as a person in terms of meeting new people, experiencing different ways of life, and gaining new perspectives.
“What struck me most about my summer internship at a major engineering school was how I could hold my own. Not only was the school very different from what I was used to, but on top of that I was doing material-science engineering, not even my native field of physics. But the critical thinking and adaptability I learned at Bryn Mawr served me well, and I was able to work and even impress my faculty advisor with my contributions.”
Hosanna Odhner ’13
Bryn Athyn, Pa.
Note: Hosanna Odhner presented the results of her summer research internship at the College of Wooster at the annual meeting of the American Physical Society; the following summer, she blogged about her research internship at Georgia Tech. Her interests extend far beyond the lab: she is active as a peer mentor, loves swing dancing, tennis, and knitting, and won Bryn Mawr's Elinor Nahm Prize for acheivement in intermediate Italian. She is interested in pursuing a business career in a science or technology field, a path for which she feels exceptionally well prepared by Bryn Mawr’s liberal-arts curriculum–with a boost from a management-training course offered by the Bryn Mawr College Treasurer's Office.