student advisory committee, 2019-20

Keeping it relevant and real

Each spring, we welcome new members to the Student Advisory Committee, comprised of up to 20 students from across the country who show extraordinary leadership and dedication to Active Minds. The committee is an advisory body to the national office that brings the student perspective to organizational decision making. We are so grateful for their time and talents.

Juhee Agrawal

President, Active Minds Student Advisory Committee

School: University of Alabama, Birmingham

About: Juhee is double majoring in Neuroscience and Spanish and has been involved with Active Minds for the past 3 years. She now serves as chapter president and loves the countless opportunities to hear about people’s personal experiences with mental health issues. Outside of Active Minds, she researches the molecular mechanisms behind depression and suicide. Last year, she served as a peer coach in UAB Peer Support, a program where she actively listened and supported fellow students with mental health-related needs. She aspires to become a physician and continue mental health advocacy in the medical field. In her spare time, she enjoys hammocking and cultivating her new hobby: hand lettering.

Taylor Jean Annerino 

School: Auburn University

About: Taylor Jean is a current Junior at Auburn University majoring in Political Science and minoring in Communications. Upon graduation, she plans to attend law school. As Vice President of her Auburn Active Minds chapter, she enjoys planning and helping execute their fall event Mental Wealth Week where an entire week is spent helping students learn about Active Minds and their own mental wellbeing. She also worked on a committee to bring all of Auburn’s mental health resources into one easy location for students to access. Within her own friends and family, she has witnessed eating disorders, bipolar disorder, depression, anxiety, PTSD and mental illnesses caused by aging such as Alzheimer’s and Dementia. She eventually would love to work in politics and the United States government to bring more health care bills surrounding mental health to the Congress floor.

Sruti

Sruti Bandlamuri

School: Union College

Studies: Chemistry and Sociology

About: After watching people around her grapple with inescapable mental and emotional turmoil while stigmas inhibited their mental illness recovery, she founded The Outpatient Project in high school, a platform for women of diverse backgrounds to share their health/healthcare stories. Appointed the Outreach Chair of Union’s Active Minds chapter during her first year at Union College, Sruti helped facilitate collaboration among various student organizations in their collective attempt to destigmatize, advocate for, foster communication about, and elucidate mental health for students on campus. Sruti is also constituent member of Union College Organization of Peer Educators (UCOPE), an editor for The Idol: Union College Literary Magazine, and a member of Women’s Union. When she’s not advocating for mental health, Sruti can be found practicing Indian classical dance, reading, doodling, or exploring.

Lydia Borsi

School: University of Rochester

About: Lydia is a Neuroscience and Psychology major at the University of Rochester (Class of 2021). She comes from Athens, Greece and is currently the president of her school’s Active Minds chapter. She hopes get involved in research on risk factors for PTSD in non-veteran populations and eventually study psychiatry. Lydia loves singing, acting, and spending time with her siblings (preferably at a greek beach!). Being open about her own struggle with anxiety and PTSD has helped her fight stigma, grow through it all, and make awesome friends along the way.

Stephanie Cahill

School: Arizona State University

About: Stephanie joined Active Minds at Arizona State University her freshman year and soon became an involved member. Her passion for mental health awareness stems from her time in high school after accumulating multiple concussions, one that was extremely severe to the frontal lobe. She was interested in the links between brain trauma and mental illness. Once she got to college, she knew that her drive was to help others share stories of their mental health journeys. She became president of her Active Minds chapter and through her leadership started ASU’s first mental health conference which is now a successful annual event. As well, she travels around Arizona speaking about her own story in hopes it will inspire others to do the same.

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Julie Coker

School: Stockton University

About: Julie Coker is a senior social work major at Stockton University in Galloway, NJ. She loves studying and researching mental health. She plans to receive a Master’s degree in social work and obtain her LCSW. She has served as the Active Minds Chapter President at Stockton for 1 year and Co-President for 2 years. Between fall 2017 and spring 2019 she has helped screen approximately 3,700 people for suicide, depression, and disordered eating behaviors. In spring 2019, she won the Stockton University Student Development Community Service Award for her work with Active Minds.

Liz Frissell

School: Occidental College

About: Liz studies Philosophy and Pre-Law at Occidental College in California and joined Active Minds her first week of college where she joined the chapter’s Fundraising Committee. A semester later, she became a Cohort Ambassador for Active Mind for Every Mind. Through the Cohort, Liz researched how LGBTQ+ students struggle with mental health nationally and at Occidental College. She then planned self-care events for her LGBTQ+ peers in addition to her fundraising events. Liz will start her sophomore this year being Fundraising Chair of her chapter. She is also the President of Law Society, Treasurer of Greek Council, and works for the non-profit Environment California. She is extremely grateful to the upperclassman members of Active Minds who welcomed her and encouraged her to take on responsibilities in her first year.

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Jaylene Hurley

School: Worcester State University

About: Jaylene is a rising sophomore at Worcester State University who love to step out of her comfort zone and try new things whenever she can. During her freshman year, she explored numerous organizations at school and discovered Active Minds. The mission of the group completely resonated with her and she can’t wait to grow as a voice for mental health awareness on campus!

Zuher Ali Ibrahim

School: Pace University

About: Zuher will be in her senior year during the 2019-2020 school year and plans to head to law school to eventually become a lawyer and work on policy reform for issues like education access, sexual assault, and mental health. As a Black woman in a school and a city that is all about the #RiseandGrind, Zuher finds herself forgetting to put her mental health and wellness first. Being the founding Vice President during her junior year and transitioning into the President her final year she hopes to make policy on campus regarding mental health along her E-board members.  Being a part of Active Minds reminds her to spread awareness and break stigmas surrounding mental health in communities of color. Mental health and wellness is often an overseen topic on college campuses and the impact of Active Minds cannot be ignored. Being an advocate and an activist, Zuher values others’ opinions on mental health and how she and others can continue to raise awareness and open the minds of others. ​

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Rebecca Johnson

School: University of California, Davis

About: Becky is a third-year transfer student at UC Davis in Davis, CA. She first came in contact with Active Minds at her junior college in Southern California. Through her experience as a president of the Active Minds at her community college, she saw how special populations struggled with mental health wellness and awareness compared to mainstream society.  She hopes to one day delve into the intersection of mental health and public policy through the lens of faith (a handful!) When she’s not working the graveyard shift, she enjoys frequent naps, listening to RC Sproul, and exploring NorCal a little bit each day.

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Michelle Luu

School: University of California, Riverside

About: When Michelle learned of Active Minds’ mission and began to recognize the ubiquity of mental health stigma within her own life and the lives of those around her, mental health advocacy was a calling she could not refuse. Since the tail-end of her freshman year, she’s been working with her chapter and campus partners to transform the mental health culture within her campus and local community through collaborations with campus organizations, large scale events & programming, and helping to represent the student voice on mental health related discussions. As a fourth year Psychology major, Michelle is also on the Student Advisory Committee for NASPA, a Sister of Delta Epsilon Mu, a student researcher studying Emotion Regulation in children, a member of InterVarsity Christian Fellowship, and a WELLness peer educator. To self-care, Michelle likes to collect fountain pens, watercolor, read manga, and participate in writing challenges (like NaNoWriMo; although, one might argue that’s not self-care). In the future, she aims to continue the mental health journey by pursing further education in clinical psychology and/or public health in order to make a lasting impact in her local community.

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Carmen Macias

School: Rockhurst University

About: Carmen is a Junior at Rockhurst University in Kansas City, Missouri studying Nonprofit Leadership and English. She got involved with Active Minds her freshmen year as a general member and later served as PR chair before stepping into her current role as President. Carmen spends her free time running, reading, or journaling. Carmen is very excited and honored to spend her senior year serving as President  of her chapter and as a member of the National Student Advisory committee.

Kelly Bernadette Madden

School: Ithaca College 

About: This journey has sparked Kelly’s interest in peer education and advocacy. The biggest joy of Active Minds has been her work with the campus community and local community members at large. She is currently the Speak Your Mind (SYM) Panel Chair/Organizer and rising Co-President of Active Minds at Ithaca College. Throughout her years as a member and leader of her chapter, she has organized and participated in multiple campaigns like the local Out of the Darkness walks and Send Silence Packing. Other than that, she teaches locally at Ithaca Montessori and spends her free time hiking around Ithaca.

Kiana Malabanan

School: San Diego State University

About: Kiana is a multicultural, first-generation, young women, who was born and raised in San Diego and is a rising senior at San Diego State University, studying Interdisciplinary Studies in the three departments, Communications, Psychology, and Counseling and School Psychology. After earning her bachelor’s degree, she hopes to study Marriage Family Therapy graduate school and become a Marriage Family Therapist. Kiana joined SDSU Active Minds in my sophomore year of college and has been a general member, treasurer, and is currently the chapter President. Kiana joined SDSU Active Minds to find a community that connected her to other students that wanted to reduce the stigma around mental illness. Personal experience and hearing the testimonials about Active Minds’ impact has led Kiana to be a passionate advocate for mental health.

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Kayla Marker

School: Kent State University

About: Kayla attends Kent State University in Ohio where she studies Criminology and Justice Studies, Psychology, and Forensic Anthropology. Kayla has always had a niche for mental health, rooted in her own experiences and viewing everyone else’s around her as well. She decided she wanted to make an impact in the community around her to address the stigma by bringing Active Minds to her campus in Spring 2019. Kayla is the President of Active Minds at KSU, a Crime Victim Advocate, a world traveler, and is aspiring to be a behavioral analyst in the F.B.I, while continuing to be an advocate for mental health.

Leena Penumalee

School: Virginia Commonwealth University

About: Leena is a student at Virginia Commonwealth University studying Biology and Spanish. Coming from a cultural background that tends to stigmatize mental illness motivated her to join Active Minds as a freshman in college. As the Education Chair for her chapter, Leena helped coordinate several events including the Clothesline Project and de-stress meetings during finals! In the past year, she has also had the incredible opportunity to join the university’s Mental Health Advisory Board. Outside of Active Minds, Leena loves exploring Richmond, playing tennis, and photography! In the future, she hopes to go into medicine and public health.

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Debra Tuberion

School: University of Tampa

About: Debra Tuberion is a junior at the University of Tampa majoring in Psychology and minoring in Law, Justice, and Advocacy. While trying to pursue a career in the field of law, she believes mental health is important in all areas of work and the stigma around mental health should be broken amongst all ages. She is very excited to begin her first year on the Active Minds Student Advisory Committee and help the organization meet their mission statement!