Growing up I didn’t know much about mental health. When one of my best college friends went through a mental health crisis I decided to join my campus Active Minds chapter to learn how I could better support her (and myself). Through involvement with my chapter I became passionate about mental health education and advocacy. I learned from my peers how they were impacted by mental illness and wanted to be a part of changing the conversation around mental health and empowering students to make positive changes on their campuses.
Where I Started
My college Active Minds chapter hosted a mental health speaker, John Tessitore. At that speaking engagement I met John, the founder of my first employer, the JCK Foundation! I started by volunteering at the mental health non-profit while I was completing my Master of Public Health degree. Post-graduation I was offered a paid role. I served as the program manager of the JCK Foundation for almost two years and got experience designing workshops, facilitating presentations, and spearheading evaluations for programs primarily in high schools and colleges.
Where I Am Now
I am the Evaluation Manager at Active Minds where I support internal program evaluations by helping develop program goals, design tools used to measure the effectiveness of programs (e.g., surveys, focus groups), analyze qualitative and quantitative data, and report findings and recommendations for future programs. I have also been involved in surveying Active Minds’ College Chapter Network to learn more about the demographics of our chapter stakeholders to set benchmarks for increasing the diversity of the network and tailor/target programs to special populations. One of my favorite parts of my role is working with and mentoring students interested in the field of program evaluation or anything related to mental health!
Where I'm Going
I have so many interests when it comes to mental health from mental health in higher ed to mental health policy to mental health education and programs. When I started my journey at Active Minds in 2021 I was in a higher ed role and last year was given the opportunity to move to the Research and Evaluation team since I had experience with program evaluation. In my career I hope to continue to support the mental health movement in whatever ways I can whether that be through designing workshops, informing policies, telling stories with data, or mobilizing youth and young adults to advocate for mental health.