Championing Mental Health Equity Through Education Access – Congratulations to Our 2022 Awardees!

Active Minds
Active Minds

As we continue to explore innovative ways of improving equitable mental health access and treatment, we know one major way we can help is by supporting young adults from all backgrounds and identities in their mental health-related studies. Mental health professions are broader than you may think – it includes historically recognized practices such as counseling and social work, as well as fields of study such as nursing and health science. The professionals in these fields should be as representative as the populations they serve. Culturally competent healthcare must be a priority if we are to make mental health a more approachable and trusted topic. 

With that, Active Minds is proud to announce we have awarded our inaugural Emerging Scholars Nash Family Scholarship to three students working to make a difference in the mental health field. These students all show a dedication to healthcare equity, commitment to their studies and future plans, and of course, a passion for mental health. Each student will receive a total of $30,000 to help fund their graduate studies, made possible by generous support from Avi and Sandra Nash. Learn more about this year’s scholars below, and check out our website for additional details on the scholarship. 

Headshot of Alyssa Garza.Alyssa Garza

Alyssa is an Indigenous Latina pursuing a master’s degree in counseling at Louisiana State University – Shreveport. Post-graduation, she plans on implementing her knowledge and skills learned from this program to assist those struggling with mental health challenges, and in particular working with individuals of minority populations, women of color, and survivors of domestic abuse. Her hobbies include traveling, attending live music performances, cooking, and yelling at the TV during the Cowboys’ football games.

Headshot of Jana LeBert.Jana LeBert

Jana is a recent graduate of Howard University, where she earned a bachelor’s degree in psychology, with a double minor in biology and community health education. She will pursue a master’s degree in public health with a concentration in behavioral, social, and health education sciences at Emory University this fall. She seeks to continue gaining experience in the field of behavioral health to advocate for increasing minority mental healthcare accessibility, culturally competent healthcare administration, and decreasing health disparities for Black and Brown youth and their communities. 

Headshot of Sophia Shieh.Sophia Shieh

Sophia is currently a visiting student at the University of Oxford. She is majoring in Applied Psychology and Human Development, with triple minors back at her home university, Boston College. In the fall, she will enroll in either the Columbia University Master of Social Work/Master of Public Health dual degree program or the University of Chicago Master of Social Work program. Her long-term goal is to pursue a Ph.D. in Clinical or Community Psychology to continue learning from and amplifying the voices of those whom she serves through a community participatory framework.

Congratulations to this year’s scholarship awardees – we can’t wait to see how you will use your passion for mental health accessibility and equity throughout your careers!