Youth and young adults have made clear that many of the most pressing mental health-related issues are connected to racial and social justice, creating equitable access to mental health care, developing youth-centered mental health policies (school board, local, or state), and achieving affordable, culturally appropriate comprehensive health care.

The Active Minds Mental Health Advocacy Academy is a leadership development and mental health advocacy academy that equips high school students to address mental health-related issues and affect change in their schools, communities, and states.

This unique, paid leadership program provides rising 9th-12th grade high school students, that currently attend school in the United States, with the tools and resources needed to develop mental health advocacy campaigns that will transform and positively impact school, community, and state culture and increase mental health resources for Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) and lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, and questioning (LGBTQ+) youth and their communities. Academy members will develop a mental health campaign that can be implemented in their schools and communities.

Through the Active Minds Mental Health Advocacy Academy, students will have the opportunity to learn leadership through connection and collaboration with student changemakers across the country. By the end of the Academy, students will walk away with ideas and intentions to reshape their school and local communities!

Applications for the Summer Academy are now closed but applications for the Fall are open through June 1.

Applications for the 2024 Active Minds Mental Health Fall Academy open now through June 1.

Apply for Fall Academy

(Note: Applications for the Fall Academy 2024 will be reviewed in July, once the Summer Academy has ended. Responses can be expected to begin going out in early August.)

Academy FAQ’s

Mental health advocacy is a growing trend where people who are passionate about mental health are contributing to changing the conversation about mental health through advocating for policies and awareness campaigns. Young adults have made clear that the most pressing mental health-related issues include addressing racial justice, creating equitable access to mental health care, developing youth-centered mental health policies (school board, local, or state), and achieving affordable, culturally appropriate comprehensive health care.

During your time in the Mental Health Advocacy Academy, you will have the opportunity to build your foundational knowledge of mental health advocacy, policy, education, awareness, and equity. You will learn from people making changes across the country, as well as get to know other student leaders who have been successful mental health champions and how they would like to ignite change in their schools and communities.

The Academy will take place twice. The Summer Academy will meet virtually starting May 28 and run through June 25, 2024. The Fall Academy will meet virtually starting September 24 and run through October 22, 2024. We intend for this 5-week to be one of the most informative and exciting weeks of your summer, as you will grow in your knowledge of how to have a profound impact in the mental health advocacy space. There will also be an opportunity to stay connected to your Academy peers and Active Minds staff throughout the following school year.

 

It is completely free to apply to the Academy. Students will receive a stipend upon completion of the Academy, required documents, and pre- and post- program evaluations.

At this time, students in 9th-12th grade who reside in the United States are eligible to apply to participate in the Active Minds Mental Health Advocacy Academy.

Yes, Active Minds has partnered with organizations like The Trevor Project, the Center for Law and Social Policy (CLASP), GENUp, Inseperable/Hopeful Futures Campaign, Young Invincibles, and state elected officials to share important expertise about mental health advocacy and provide examples of successful mental health advocacy campaigns.
The Active Minds Mental Health Advocacy Academy was great! …They taught me a whole lot and the speakers taught me a whole lot as well. I want to join the Active Minds Mental Health Advocacy Academy again, in the future! As well as have cousins join too!

 Refer Someone!

Do you know someone who may be interested in applying for the Academy? Enter their name and email below and we will let them know you thought of them and invite them to apply! (info given will not be used for any marketing purposes)

Hear from Past Academy Participants About Their Experience

Overall, I enjoyed the entire experience with Active Minds and I will continue to work on my mental health campaign. I learned many things throughout the program and now have many contacts when in need of guidance or help with mental health and even other things. This program is helping me build connections and helps me better educate myself.