Welcome Active Minds Spring 2022 Interns

Active Minds
Active Minds

Welcome to our awesome group of spring 2022 interns! We’re so excited to work with them to change the conversation around mental health.

Ja’Mi Barnes
hannah whitfield headshot

1. Where do you (or did you) go to school? What do you study?

I am currently a senior at Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College in Tifton, GA. I am a rural studies major.

2. What got you excited about an internship at Active Minds?

Promotional emails I received due to me signing up to learn more information about Active Minds and mental health.

3. What department are you interning for?

I’m interning on the Social Media Team.

4. What are you most looking forward to this semester?

I am looking forward to learning the ins and outs of the social media world. Not only that, but the demanding work it takes to run a huge organization such as Active Minds. I want to learn more about how to promote mental health on different platforms and grow both as a professional and a mental health advocate.

5. What is your favorite food?

Anything vegan but if I had to pick, I would say fruit!

6. What are you currently binge-watching?

I’m currently binge-watching “Euphoria.”

7. What are your three favorite things to do for fun?

I’d have to say going to Universal Studios, going to concerts with my family/friends, and keeping up with all things pop culture.

8. If you could change one thing about the world, what would it be?

There are so many things…. I would change the access to education. I would love to use any and all resources I had to make sure that everyone was given the chance to learn and better their minds so they can make a difference. Education is so important.

9. Describe your dream job.

My dream job would be anything that allows me to blend public speaking, mental health, and helping people. That could be a professor, therapist, working in social media. The possibilities are endless.

10. If you could meet one famous person, living or dead, who would you want to meet?

I’d like to meet Beyoncé Giselle Knowles-Carter.

11. If you could travel anywhere in the world, where would you want to visit?

I’d like to visit New York City or Paris.

Kaila Hembrook

greg carnesi headshot1. Where do you (or did you) go to school? What do you study?

I go to the University of Iowa and I’m studying communications with a certificate in nonprofit leadership and philanthropy.

2. What got you excited about an internship at Active Minds?

Mental health has been an extremely important part of my college experience and without the services I have used, my schooling would have gone differently. I want to make sure other students have the same access to these services and I believe Active Minds is doing a phenomenal job at that.

3. What department are you interning for?

I am working as a development intern.

4. What are you most looking forward to this semester?

I hope to learn how to best manage my time in a remote setting and learn new development strategies that I have not yet been introduced to. I also hope to build my confidence when presenting new ideas. I am excited to gain hands-on experience before graduating and applying for full-time jobs!

5. What is your favorite food?

I could eat pasta for every meal, no matter what sauce!

6. What are you currently binge-watching?

My two binge-watching shows are “Euphoria” and “Ru-Paul’s Drag Race.”

7. What are your three favorite things to do for fun?

I love to sing, crochet, and workout.

8. If you could change one thing about the world, what would it be?

I would make healthcare free for all. Our health is the most important part of our lives because it keeps us alive. I think nobody should have to worry about money keeping them from maintaining their health.

9. Describe your dream job.

My dream would be to become a Director of Development at a highly ranked University hospital, preferably on the East Coast.

10. If you could meet one famous person, living or dead, who would you want to meet?

Taylor Swift! I have loved her since I was young and would do anything to just sit and listen to her talk about songwriting.

11. If you could travel anywhere in the world, where would you want to visit?

I’ve never left the country but have always been extremely fascinated with Australia. If I ever get a lot of money, it would be the first place I’d go!

Noeli Martinez

1. Where do you (or did you) go to school? What do you study?

I recently graduated from the University of California, Santa Barbara, where I majored in communications and minored in applied psychology.

2. What got you excited about an internship at Active Minds?

I’ve personally seen my peers struggle with mental health issues. I am thrilled to be part of an organization like Active Minds. I truly believe and stand by Active Minds’ mission to destigmatize the conversation about mental health especially within young adults who may be more vulnerable to these types of issues.

3. What department are you interning for?

I’m interning with the social media team.

4. What are you most looking forward to this semester?

This semester I am most looking forward to learning what it takes to manage social media platforms for an amazing organization like Active Minds. I hope to help Active Minds grow on emerging platforms like TikTok and Instagram Reels. Throughout the internship, I also hope I can assist in reaching out to Active Minds’ male audience through our social media content.

5. What is your favorite food?

I love enchiladas.

6. What are you currently binge-watching?

I’m currently binge-watching “Abbott Elementary.”

7. What are your three favorite things to do for fun?

I love discovering new music on Spotify, catching up on Netflix shows, and going to concerts.

8. If you could change one thing about the world, what would it be?

I would make college free for those who want to attend or get rid of student debt entirely. I know many young people can be burdened by the financial aspect of college and may not have the chance to attend due to financial restrictions. If I had the power to lift that burden off young people and their families, I wouldn’t hesitate to do so.

9. Describe your dream job.

My dream job would be working as a Social Media Director for a nonprofit or a music/entertainment company.

10. If you could meet one famous person, living or dead, who would you want to meet?

I would love to meet Justin Bieber. Growing up, he was one of the few celebrities I was consistently a fan of and his story seems so interesting to me. I would also like to meet Princess Diana.

10. If you could travel anywhere in the world, where would you want to visit?

I have never been to Europe so I’d love to visit London or Spain.

Shannon Regan

1. Where do you (or did you) go to school? What do you study?

I go to the University of Iowa. I am finishing up my master’s degree in strategic communications, I will be graduating in May 2022.

2. What got you excited about an internship at Active Minds?

I have a draw to this organization after seeing their work on my campus and having personal connections to the cause. I love the awareness Active Minds brings to mental health. Especially with COVID, mental health struggles have increased so I appreciate Active Minds being proactive and giving people the resources they need.

3. What department are you interning for?

I am an intern for the Marketing and Communications Team!

4. What are you most looking forward to this semester?

Besides networking and improving my writing skills with hands-on work, my goal is to gain more insight into corporate communications. Interning at a communications agency is different from interning for a specific company. I am excited to learn about how to effectively communicate accessible mental health resources.

5. What is your favorite food?

I’d have to say either soup dumplings or watermelon!

6. What are you currently binge-watching?

I’m currently watching “Euphoria” and “Real Housewives of Salt Lake City.”

7. What are your three favorite things to do for fun?

I love spending time exploring new restaurants with my friends, listening to music/podcasts, and traveling to new cities!

8. If you could change one thing about the world, what would it be?

I would change the world so that there’s less student debt. College is so expensive, and the majority of students have some sort of debt. Having debt is extremely limiting to young people, so student loan forgiveness will get rid of a huge burden for people

9. Describe your dream job.

I want to work within the PR/communications field. I love that it’s a fun yet challenging industry. It’s hard work with a lot of creative opportunities. It’s a great industry to have a variety of projects and see successful results. Ideally, I’d like to one day be an account director overseeing and implementing client PR campaigns.

10. If you could meet one famous person, living or dead, who would you want to meet?

Emma Watson because she is so smart, inspiring, and charitable. She is an incredible activist for many different causes.

11. If you could travel anywhere in the world, where would you want to visit?

I would love to visit the Hawaiian Islands or travel around the South of France in the summertime!

Freddie Wandji

1. Where do you (or did you) go to school? What do you study?
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I attend the University of Maryland and study behavioral and community health with a specialization in special populations.

2. What got you excited about an internship at Active Minds?

Mental health advocacy is important to me. I have personal connections and knowing ways to help is important to me. I think more people should become aware of preventative measures and ways that they could help others. I also think mental health awareness is important.

3. What department are you interning for?

I am part of the Development Team.

4. What are you most looking forward to this semester?

I am looking forward to enhancing my verbal and written communication skills, learning marketing strategies and how to properly present a message to a consumer. In addition, enhance my fundraising skills and get to meet individuals who care about an issue that is important to me.

5. What is your favorite food?

I love pasta with shrimp or bolognese; I also love any Cameroonian food!

6. What are you currently binge-watching?

I’m currently watching “90 Day Fiancé.”

7. What are your three favorite things to do for fun?

I like to cook, workout, and go out to eat with my friends.

8. If you could change one thing about the world, what would it be?

I’d solve the problem of inadequate access to healthcare in low-income communities

9. Describe your dream job.

My dream job would be owning an organization that aids impoverished communities gain access to quality health care. Building clinics, health promotion, giving supplies, and addressing food insecurity.

10. If you could meet one famous person, living or dead, who would you want to meet?

I’d like to meet Nelson Mandela.

11. If you could travel anywhere in the world, where would you want to visit?

I’d love to travel to Seychelles or Greece.

Aliana Whelan

1. Where do you (or did you) go to school? What do you study?

I am currently a junior at New York University studying public policy and international relations.

2. What got you excited about an internship at Active Minds?

As VP of my school’s Active Minds chapter, I am incredibly excited to see how Active Minds operates at the national level and how the organization creates and develops programs that best support its chapters. Also, being a public policy major and working in mental health advocacy is incredibly exciting because mental health is a very intersectional issue that overlaps with many other policy issues and themes.

3. What department are you interning for?

I am a Programs Team intern, working specifically with the Speakers Team.

4. What are you most looking forward to this semester?

This semester I am most looking forward to learning about how Active Minds researches, develops, and executes programmatic work to best serve our communities. As well, working on the Speakers Team, I hope to learn more about how Active Minds creates narratives around their work and how storytelling can be utilized as a tool for mental health advocacy.

5. What is your favorite food?

I love Thai food or ramen.

6. What are you currently binge-watching?

I just finished watching season three of “Succession.”

7. What are your three favorite things to do for fun?

I love discovering new places to eat, reading, and traveling (pre-Covid of course)!

8. If you could change one thing about the world, what would it be?

I would make it so that everyone has access to clean water, food, housing, healthcare, and education.

9. Describe your dream job.

My dream job would be to do policy and advocacy work for a mental health or criminal justice organization.

10. If you could meet one famous person, living or dead, who would you want to meet?

I would most want to meet either Toni Morrison or Hayao Miyazaki.

11. If you could travel anywhere in the world, where would you want to visit?

I’d like to visit Paris.

Cassidy Wilkins

1. Where do you (or did you) go to school? What do you study?

I am a community studies major at the University of California, Santa Cruz. I will be graduating in June 2022.

2. What got you excited about an internship at Active Minds?

I have been previously involved with Active Minds and started a chapter at my community college (Skyline College, San Bruno CA). Now at UC Santa Cruz, I have had the opportunity to overlap my education with the incredible work of Active Minds. I was privileged to start my fellowship in June 2021 and continue through December 2021 for academic units, and finally returning to the classroom to write a capstone about my experience. I am honored that I was asked to stay on as the Chapters Team fellow through May. Completing a full-year fellowship is and has been an incredible learning opportunity for me.

3. What department are you interning for?

I am working with the Chapters Team!

4. What are you most looking forward to this semester?

I hope to continue to grow professional skills like how to communicate via email more professionally. I hope to gain a better understanding of how nonprofits are organized, workflow, the larger non-profit sector, and the field overall. I would also love to continue meeting with staff members to gain a better understanding of everyone’s roles and responsibilities.

5. What is your favorite food?

I love avocado toast and coffee (coffee is like a main food group for me!).

6. What are you currently binge-watching?

I’m not a major fan of TV.

7. What are your three favorite things to do for fun?

Go on walks with my dog Willow, either in my neighborhood or West Cliff, at the beach. I spend as much time as I can at the beach, I could sit there all day! I also love going to concerts. I love music so experiencing my favorite bands live is always incredible.

8. If you could change one thing about the world, what would it be?

I believe we would have a happier and healthier society if we had basic needs met, such as affordable and accessible health care (without the worries of money), access to healthy foods, and proper mental health care! The world would be a better place if people didn’t have to fight so hard to survive.

9. Describe your dream job.

I really want to make an impact. Whether that be writing books, being a professional mental health speaker, or working at an incredible organization like Active Minds. I would like to do something I feel is impactful to lives directly, specifically with mental health education, awareness, and support. My current dream job is right here with Active Minds. I take huge pride in my fellowship and hope to stick around as an official staff member someday. I love working with the Chapters Team, but overall appreciate and admire the work of all our departments, and I can see the tangible and direct impact of our work daily.

10. If you could meet one famous person, living or dead, who would you want to meet?

I’d love to meet Ruth Bader Ginsburg, rest in power.

11. If you could travel anywhere in the world, where would you want to visit?

Greece! I would love to do a “Mamma Mia” inspired island trip. I would also stop in Sicily, where I have family (I am a full-blooded Sicilian!).

Gabby Yaptinchay

1. Where do you (or did you) go to school? What do you study?

I received my bachelor’s in kinesiology from the University of Maryland and I am currently enrolled in Tulane University’s MPH program with a concentration in community health. I’m looking forward to graduating this summer!

2. What got you excited about an internship at Active Minds?

Coming from the Philippines, where mental health is stigmatized, especially learning quickly through the attitudes of my parents who “don’t believe in it”, I realized the importance of providing resources and being an active advocate for others.

3. What department are you interning for?

I am interning for the Programs Team, supporting Higher Ed & Evaluation.

4. What are you most looking forward to this semester?

I am looking forward to learning more about program development and evaluation in practice, especially since learning about it in my classes is different from doing it in practice. I am also excited to get to know the other amazing staff and interns at Active Minds.

5. What is your favorite food?

Thai food is #1 in my book… If you need recommendations, try Pad See Ew!

6. What are you currently binge-watching?

I’m currently binge-watching “Only Murders in the Building.”

7. What are your three favorite things to do for fun?

I enjoy going on hikes or walking with our four-year-old Bernese Mountain Dog, doing fun crafts with my Cricut machine, and traveling with my husband!

8. If you could change one thing about the world, what would it be?

I would change the world’s lack of equity on a variety of fronts, especially healthcare, which is increasingly relevant in our world today. If I had unlimited resources, third-world countries, such as the Philippines would have the same access to free vaccines and a better healthcare system.

9. Describe your dream job.

My dream job would be to advocate for people with disabilities and provide them and their caregivers/families with the resources they need to live a high-quality life. This includes ensuring that places are ADA-compliant, healthcare facilities have sign language interpreters, caregivers/families are provided with a variety of options for their mental health/respite for some self-care, and more. I would also love to tie in physical activity and create more extracurricular programs for people with disabilities to reduce rates of obesity.

10. If you could meet one famous person, living or dead, who would you want to meet?

I would have loved to meet Ruth Bader Ginsburg. She was influential in multiple areas, but she was very involved in advocacy for people with disabilities. I would love to have a conversation on how to handle criticism and holding one’s own, in a patriarchal society, and any other insights she would have in making a difference for those with disabilities.

11. If you could travel anywhere in the world, where would you want to visit?

I would love to travel to Paris, France. I took French for 7 years and would love to test my knowledge of the language and culture! I would also love to visit the museums such as the Louvre or other historical places, such as the Palace of Versailles! I will say that we are headed to Italy, Germany, and Switzerland this summer, so Paris will have to wait a little longer.

 

If you’re interested in interning for Active Minds in the future, click here to learn more.