RADical Hope Spotlights Students in Honor of Mental Health Awareness Month

In honor of Mental Health Awareness Month this past May, RADical Hope featured six students across its social platforms who have participated in the RADical Health program and who have demonstrated exemplary leadership and initiative in their respective cohorts.

To kick things off, RADical Hope introduced Carley Daly. Carly is a Senior Ice Hockey Player at Amherst College who was instrumental in the implementation of RADical Health at Amherst and who has worked closely with the Program Lead to organize Fall and Spring cohorts. At Amherst, RADical Health is led through Amherst LEADS (Leadership Group of Amherst Student Athletes); the participants consist of first year student athletes.

In reflecting on the RADical Health program, Carly shared: “RADical Health provided the perfect platform to share my passion for the importance of positive mental health and wellbeing in athletics with the Amherst athletics community. Your physical game can only ever be as strong as your mental game.”

Our next student spotlight featured Stephanie Spruck, a student at Pace University. Stephanie participated in RADical Hope’s peer-led program at Pace twice! After going through as a participant, she went on to co-lead a grStephanie Spruckoup with a faculty member, and then led a group on her own as a full Guide. Today, Stephanie is starting an official club at Pace to share the mission with even more students.

Stephanie shared with us: “Through RADical Hope, I have found not only my community, but also my life’s purpose in guiding, inspiring, encouraging, motivating, and supporting others. I have never connected with my peers on such a personal level as I did through this program. RADical Hope provided me the space to receive support, mentorship, and guidance, and as I became more involved and engaged, I have been granted the wonderful opportunity to pay this kindness forward to my fellow students and to be an advocate for health and wellness on all levels!

Mental health awareness month continued with our next student spotlight: Jaycee Goodwin. Jaycee is a student at Georgia State University where she plays softball and serves as the president of the university’s SAAC (Student-Athlete Advisory Committee). Jaycee was instrumental in bringing the RADical Health program to GSU and stayed connected to all of the peer Guides she worked with, as well as many of the participants. She has continued to remain a strong advocate for the program, recommending it to students and other schools in the Sun-Belt region.

RADical Hope was what GSU needed,” Jaycee shared with us. “As a student-athlete I witnessed a population of people that had a lot of love to give, but lacked the environment to give it. RADical Hope brought our athletes together, formed countless relationships, and cultivated an environment that GSU needed.”

Next up, we introduced Amanda Brown, a student at Clark University. Along with studying biochemistry and molecular biology, Amanda is a Wellness Ambassador within the school’s Wellness Education Department, helping to promote well-being and mental health support on campus through various initiatives, events, and workshops. Amanda was instrumental in getting the RADical Health program off the ground at Clark, demonstrating great leadership and initiative by supporting the program’s implementation and then helping to organize and manage the weekly, peer-led sessions.

In the third week of May, we spotlighted Princess Brooks, a student at Delaware State University. Princess is majoring in Public Health and she served as a RADical Health School Lead for the university, taking on the role as part of her Senior Internship.

Princess demonstrated great leadership – serving as a peer Guide for all four RADical Health cohorts in the Spring of 2023. She has been a strong advocate for mental health services on her campus and in her personal reflection of RADical Health, stated “Oftentimes, I personally felt like I had nobody on campus to express myself to, so being able to facilitate this program to various classes is heartwarming.”

Our May student spotlight series concluded with an introduction to Nicolette Kogut, a Senior at Fairfield University pursuing a Biology / Pre-Med major. Nicolette studied the RADical Health program for her Capstone Project — each year at the annual Innovative Research Symposium, Fairfield University students come together from diverse disciplines to share scholarly projects.

Along with focusing on the RADical Health program for her Capstone research, Nicolette was instrumental in helping to facilitate the RADical Health program sessions on her campus – passing out surveys and organizing pairs for breakouts.

She even used the peer feedback gathered in the sessions for her final Capstone presentation, which was titled: “RADical Health: Effects of coping-skills program on mental health among Fairfield University students.”

View the May student student spotlight series on RADical Hope’s Instagram page at: https://www.instagram.com/radicalhope_fdn/