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Michelle Castro-Cuno


Bold Points




One of my biggest values is being independent, and that is how I see myself. I enjoy putting in the hard work that gets me where I need to go. I work and go to school full time, but I also prioritize my mental well-being. I strive for a balance between these things and having social connections. I am passionate about mental health, reading, cooking, the outdoors, and organization. I try to live life to the fullest and have fun, while also being prepared and having an understanding of what’s to come.


University of Washington-Bothell Campus

Bachelor's degree program
2021 - 2023
  • Majors:
    • Psychology, General

North Seattle College

Associate's degree program
2019 - 2021
  • Majors:
    • Psychology, General

Sheldon High School

High School
2015 - 2019


  • Desired degree level:

    Master's degree program

  • Graduate schools of interest:

  • Transfer schools of interest:

  • Majors of interest:

    • Psychology, Other
    • Criminology
    • Clinical, Counseling and Applied Psychology
    • Behavioral Sciences
    • Social Work
  • Not planning to go to medical school
  • Career

    • Dream career field:

      Mental Health Care

    • Dream career goals:

      Director of Mental Health Facility

    • Crew member

      2017 – 20181 year
    • Shift lead

      Firehouse Subs
      2018 – 20191 year
    • Server

      Garden Way Retirement Community
      2019 – 2019
    • Outpatient Program Coordinator

      Fairfax Behavioral Health
      2019 – Present5 years



    2012 – 20131 year


    • best improved


    • Gender, Women, Sexuality Studies

      University of Washington-Bothell — Researcher
      2022 – 2022


    • School choir

      Performance Art
      school performances, performance for elementary schools in the district
      2012 – 2013

    Public services

    • Volunteering

      Sheldon High School — tutor
      2019 – 2019
    • Volunteering

      Greenhill Humane Society — Cat volunteer
      2018 – 2019

    Future Interests


    Education is Bling: The Moore the Blingyer Scholarship
    I think the idea of wanting to have a positive impact on your community is a value we all share, but not everyone chooses to do it through their career choices. People in the BIPOC community are the best to speak out and speak up for the things they care about because they understand the issues first hand. That is why I am pursuing a career in the field of social work. My long-term professional goals include becoming the director of a mental health facility. In order to reach those long-term goals, I first have to complete some short-term goals. Currently, I am working towards my bachelor’s degree in community psychology. After that, I intend to go to graduate school at Ohio State University to obtain a master’s degree in social work. Education is not the only thing that I will need to succeed in my career though. I also need experience in the mental health and social services field. Right now I work as a program coordinator alongside social workers at a behavioral health hospital. I think each of these steps will help me greatly in reaching my ultimate professional goals. Like I said before, helping your community is exceedingly important especially for someone who identifies at BIPOC. I do not want to speak for all of these groups, but Latino families such as mine are very close knit and rely on their communities. My abuela has taught me how to be selfless and help others through her stories of living in Puerto Rico and the help I receive from her. I want to follow in her footsteps and show others how much I care about them. I do that right now by being a support for my loved ones physically and emotionally. I try to be a good listening ear, help them by dog sitting, or taking them to the airport. Whatever my community needs, I try my best to meet that need. Once I am able to practice as a social worker, I will be able to enact bigger change and support within my community. Social workers are able to help their community with mental health struggles, housing, food scarcity, and so much more. Since I am already immersed in the field, by the time I am licensed myself I will have extensive background knowledge on what organizations will best suit my communities individual needs. Lastly, my idea of impacting social change is all about the little things you can do to help people. I am a big believer in that doing the small stuff contributes greatly to the bigger picture. For example, my first step towards social change was simply educating myself on the matters. While learning about the Black Lives Matter Movement, for example, is a small thing, it really helped me get a foundation for how to further enact that change. Then I am able to educate others who do not quite understand or I can help by purchasing from Black business owners. I take a similar approach with the environment. I do not know (yet) how to enact bigger social change in regards to the environment, so I take small steps to preserve the world; I buy compostable and environmentally friendly products and recycle.
    Ethel Hayes Destigmatization of Mental Health Scholarship
    Mental health is something that needs to be talked about more. Despite growing up in a household where I was able to discuss mental health struggles, I experienced the stigma surrounding specific diagnoses. My sister has major depressive disorder and my step-mom has severe anxiety. These are more common diagnoses that people tend to seek treatment for. Having only a few disorders that are normalized caused me to feel like whatever I was experiencing was not a serious mental health issue. Eventually, I took the first step and sought out therapy. I discussed what I was experiencing mentally and my therapist was able to figure out what was actually wrong. For a while, I struggled with eating enough, sleeping, and finding joy in things or getting excited. It got to the point where my aunt took me to Disneyland for the first time and I barely was able to put a smile on my face. I had to be reminded to eat dinner and I slept when I was not actively working or doing homework. With all of that being said, it did not quite fit the criteria for depression. My therapist thought I had dysthymia which is a less intense but prolonged experience of depression. The criteria for this diagnosis are experiencing low mood for at least two years with two other depression symptoms. This described what I was going through perfectly and I finally had an answer! I felt so hopeless during the whole process and I want to prevent anyone else from going through that as well. I try to think empathetically about other people's experiences and understand that I do not have all of the details and that they might not either. I hope to continue my journey in the mental health field and help my client be able to put a name to their experiences and find ways to cope with them.
    Bold Persistence Scholarship
    Being a woman of color in the professional setting, it is unfortunately expected that I would struggle with not being listened to at work. I am employed as a program coordinator for a behavioral health hospital's group therapy programs. I am involved in 5 different programs and support all of the patients in them. In the treatment team, where we discuss a patient's progress, I try to give feedback about the patient and suggest the next steps for them. More often than not, our therapists will go back on their word and contradict my suggestions even when a plan was already decided for a patient. A specific example of this is when it was agreed upon by everyone that a certain patient would not continue in a lower level of programming due to not needing it and potentially being harmful to the group setting. About a week and a half before his discharge, his therapist decided that he should move down to more programming. I fought in every single treatment team meeting until his discharge to make sure that would not happen. It was in the best interest of him and all our patients, but I was ignored because of my status in the program. I persisted and eventually, the patient was successfully discharged from the program as originally planned. I will always fight for what is best for my patients, even if it poses difficulties for me because of my age, ethnicity, or gender.
    Bold Wise Words Scholarship
    "Use what talents you possess; the woods would be very silent if no birds sang there except those that sang best". I tend to hold myself back from doing things if I do not think I will succeed in the task. It has taken a lot of personal growth to get to a point where I can try new things because I am interested in them without worrying about how they will turn out. I think that this quote from Henry Van Dyke encourages you to step outside of your comfort zone and try new things even if you do not do them perfectly. Since implementing this care-free way of thinking I have learned two things: I am always happy with whatever I produce and the only person who cares about my proficiency is me. Recently I decided to try and paint a self-portrait even though I usually draw and do not even use color. I really enjoyed the process of painting the picture and was even pretty proud of the final result. But what was more important to me was that I tried and I enjoyed the process of doing it. While I know it is easier said than done, I think people could benefit greatly from caring a little less about what others think and start doing things that they want to.
    Bold Creativity Scholarship
    Creativity comes from how you want to express yourself. The way that I use my creativity to express myself is through my clothes. I have always been interested in fashion and let my style grow with me. What I choose to wear on any given day represents how I want to be seen. Some days I wear a leather jacket and heeled boots to emphasize my confidence. On other days I will wear a beanie with a flannel to show my more welcoming and comforting side. I believe that I can creatively relate my clothing pieces to certain personality traits that I have. All the items I have will give an immediate impression of me to the person I interact with. So I can creatively choose to wear a nice and expensive-looking blouse to a potential job to appear put together or wear black converse rather than heels on a date to appear less intimidating.
    Bold Goals Scholarship
    Sometimes thinking about your goals can be daunting. Everyone expects you to have everything decided before you even graduate high school, and then you have to execute these goals with little to no guidance. I try to remember that is an unreasonable expectation and allow my goals to evolve as I learn and grow. I started purely wanting to pursue therapy as my ultimate career goal. I currently work in the mental health field and spoke to my supervisor about what next steps would be best for me to take. She advised me to get a degree in social work rather than therapy because it is harder to move to managerial roles as a therapist. This made me rethink what I wanted to do for graduate school. I plan to finish my bachelor's degree in community psychology and hope to go to Ohio State University for a master's in social work. This degree in social work is going to help me move closer to my goal of working in a therapeutic setting and eventually directing my own mental health facility. Since I have so much time between now and achieving this goal, I am keeping an open mind toward changes in these goals. Whatever experience and new knowledge life bring me, I will be prepared to allow these goals to evolve with me.
    Bold Study Strategies Scholarship
    Studying is the most crucial and most difficult part of one's academic career. Having healthy study habits is extremely important for succeeding in school. I recently listened to an NPR podcast about healthy study habits, and I believe that some of their tips were quite helpful. The first tip that stuck with me was to use whatever environment is helpful for you. Many people try to tell you that listening to music while you study distracts you from the information. And while that might be true, some people cannot focus without some sort of background noise. The podcast also emphasized taking breaks. Breaks are important for your brain's health, and your mental health. Trying to cram all of your studying into one long four hour session will be overwhelming and exhausting. Splitting that up into maybe 1 hour increments with 20 minute breaks will make your studying much more effective. I also think that understanding what type of learning works best for you is important for studying. I personally am a hands-on learner, so I benefit most from actively working on whatever problem rather than just listening or watching someone else do it. I combine these three facets to create the best study strategies for me. I will listen to music if I am being easily distracted by my surroundings, or I will just be in my apartment listening to the world if I am focused. I make sure to take breaks as to not overwhelm myself or lose motivation. And lastly, I prioritize practicing the skills I am learning.
    Bold Nature Matters Scholarship
    Nature is one of the most beautiful things to grace this planet. I love it because it is beautiful, diverse, and strong. Depending on where you are in the world, nature can look very different. In the Pacific Northwest, nature is very green and full of hills. In Greece, nature is more teal from the water. But no matter where you go, nature perseveres through the climate's challenges and adapts in ways that help it survive. I like to think that nature acts as a good example for humans. Humans are beautiful, diverse, and strong. We adapt to our surroundings; or at least we try to. We could learn from the intricacies of nature and benefit from respecting it. I attempt to respect and appreciate nature by being mindful in my actions. I will mindfully think about what products I am purchasing and if they are harmful towards the environment. I actively think about recycling as much as I possibly can. I have also been trying to be more mindful about how much and where I drive. I also appreciate nature by spending time in it. Going outside for a walk or to read is my favorite way to experience nature and take in all of the positive things it has to offer.
    Bold Generosity Matters Scholarship
    Generosity is defined as being liberal in giving. That can mean showing people you love grand gestures or doing something small to support someone else. What is important in generosity is the fact that you are doing something to help another person, big or small and anything in between. To me, generosity means helping others in need, even if it could be difficult for you. The most impactful act of generosity I have come across personally came from my aunt, Esther. She treats me and my sister like we are her own children and does whatever she can to help us. Esther took my sister in when our mom could not properly take care of her anymore. Esther started 529 college savings accounts for us at the same time she did for her own daughter. She allowed me to live with her while I got on my feet in Seattle. And right now, she helps me by loaning me money for tuition that I pay back monthly. She never denies me assistance when I ask for it, or when I do not, and is always there for me. Esther is the most selfless person I know and I think she embodies the definition of generosity.
    Mary P. Perlea Scholarship Fund
    It is difficult to think about all of the challenges one has to face in order to succeed in life. I would have hoped that I could encounter smooth seas and reach my destination mostly unscathed. That did not prove true growing up in a single-parent household as a woman of color. Each of these factors provided their own hardships, and the intersectionality between having a single mom, being a woman, being Puerto Rican, and coming from a low-income household made it all that much more difficult. I faced the typical bullying that comes with being brown and a girl when I was in grade-school, but I was able to process that in a healthy way and not let it affect me too much. The adversity that I faced once I entered the workforce was much more prominent. My first professional job was as a mental health technician at a behavioral health hospital. Many of my colleagues did not think that I was fit to do that job because of my age and my gender. Some of the patients that we have are violent and have to be retrained if they are deemed to be a danger to themselves or others, and other staff did not think that I was capable of working in that environment. Similar issues regarding my age came up as I moved through the company and eventually got promoted to program coordinator. I also frequently had to deal with racist comments from patients due to my skin color. I took all of these challenges in stride and continued to focus on giving the best patient care and furthering my career rather than focusing on the doubt people had in me. At school, I am expected to excel in my courses and not need assistance from others. I grew up doing advanced or honors classes with (relative) ease, but now in college I am struggling a little bit more. It has been difficult for me to reach out for help and advocate for myself because people assume I do not actually need the help and can figure it out myself. The challenge of needing help and not being able to get it because of my performance in the past is probably the hardest of all. That is why I want to use my education to give back to underserved and underrepresented people; so that they do not have to go through similar things. I am getting my bachelors in community psychology, which gives me a basic understanding of the background people come from and how to best support their mental health needs. I am planning to pursue a masters degree in social work to further that knowledge. Social workers tend to help people from all walks of life with all diverse backgrounds. Social workers help people with housing, food, mental health issues, and more. I believe that a career in that field would be the perfect opportunity to give back to those who have similar struggles with adversity.
    Bold Empathy Scholarship
    I am sure that every person wants to be kind to others and is well-meaning in their acts. Sometimes though these acts come across as selfish or insensitive. That is why I am so grateful to have the insight that I get from work on how to support people effectively. At work, we have a "process group" where patients are able to talk about their emotions and what they are currently going through. One of the main ground rules for the patients is to asked others if they want feedback before responding and only offering validation or your personal perspective on the situation, not advice. I think that is a great rule to follow in all walks of life, not just in the professional setting. I have practiced it in conversations with my sister and friends and have received great feedback. Offering validation and other perspectives on certain situations is difficult, but definitely achievable. Once that is done, it is also important to realize when people just need to talk and vent. Reading the room and understanding what people need in different situations is one of the most important skills in treating people with empathy.
    Bold Selfless Acts Scholarship
    The current state of the world is fueled by selfishness and greed. Sometimes all you can focus on is the negative aspects of the world, and that is not the best way to approach life. I know small things do not seem to make much of a difference in the grand scheme of things, but I still believe that every little bit helps. That is why I try to be as selfless as I possibly can. Being selfless requires one to think in terms of what others need instead of just thinking about what they need. I am the oldest out of my five siblings, so I took on a sort of parental role for my younger siblings. I would take care of them and try to comfort them when things were tense inside the house. I did all of these things without thinking about myself or how I was probably too young to be dealing with those situations. This patterned continued through school with my friends and I do it at work now with patients as well. Acheiving selflessness is really difficult, but I know that I can do it because helping others is my biggest goal for life. I value empathy towards others and acts of kindness. I have always tried to comfort others and now I continue to help others in my job.
    Bold Meaning of Life Scholarship
    Many people associate the meaning of life with their career or their family; very tangible things that are easy to measure. I think that the meaning of life is deeper than that. I believe that it is less about the physical things you accomplish and more about the feelings and experiences you have. Life is meant to be experienced; the whole point of life is to live and experience things and feel the best that you can. People strive to find things that make them feel good. I think that is what the meaning of life is. To seek out experiences that make you enjoy and feel better about the life you are living. Throughout my college career I have actively been trying to live life that way; in search of things that make me happy. I try to spend time with my friends when I can, try new experiences, and go out as much as I can. I also know that time alone is important as well, so I also make time for quiet self-care days at home to support my mental health. By doing these things I believe that I am actively trying to achieve the meaning of life by seeking out experiences that make me happy.
    Elevate Mental Health Awareness Scholarship
    The subject of mental health was not something that was frequently talked about in my household when I was younger. We would talk about our feelings, but I did not really realize that depression and anxiety were serious disorders and not just negative feelings. The stigma surrounding mental health had a strong influence on my family. It was not until my sister and my cousin got diagnosed with depression that I truly understood the gravity of the situation. I became fascinated with psychology and decided that was what I wanted to study. I wanted to learn more about the diagnoses and how to best support my loved ones who suffer from them. This desire to help people grew when my cousin sadly completed suicide when I was 15. That horrible event solidified for me that I wanted to pursue a career in mental health. I was successful in that career aspiration and currently work in a behavioral health hospital as a program coordinator for the adult group therapy programs. I hope to further that career by becoming a social worker and eventually the director of my own mental health facility. I am beginning that journey by getting my bachelors in community psychology and I will be applying to graduate social work programs in the summer. Working in the hospital has really increased my interest in mental health and it has given me the basic tools to succeed in that career path. My patients give me insight to how mental health struggles truly impact people. I hate seeing people suffer through these issues and not receive the help that they need due to the stigma around mental health. I believe that people should be able to express the things they are going through without judgment and in a safe environment. I believe that people should be able to seek out mental health treatment without shame. And above all else, I believe that mental health should be destigmatized and normalized within the world so people can talk freely about it. My relationships have been impacted purely through my desire to support people. Through my job, I have developed many skills on how to best talk to people about their problems and offer helpful feedback, validation, or skills. I have always wanted to be a positive light in my loved ones lives, but I think my experience with mental health has helped me improve my ability to do this. I grew up not knowing much about mental health. It was not talked about or very normalized in my household. Once some of my loved ones had been diagnosed and sadly passed due to their mental health issues, it became more normalized in my house. I chose that I wanted to help people through their mental health issues professionally, so I started my career and education in the mental health field. I also believe that people should be able to talk about and treat mental health diagnoses without shame, so I hope to help reduce the stigma surrounding mental health.
    Bold Gratitude Scholarship
    Gratitude and gratitude journaling is something that we talk about with our patients quite frequently. I personally had not tried it much because I did not feel like I had enough time to set aside a chunk to write about the things I was grateful for between work and school. Eventually, I began to slowly be more conscious about the wonderful things I have in life and I began to appreciate them more. One of my assignments for this term was to keep a gratitude log. I had to complete four different gratitude practices and record the affects it had on my mental and physical state. The first gratitude practice I completed was called three good things. I had to think and write about three good things that happened to me that day and focus on how grateful I was to have those experiences. The second exercise was to write a gratitude letter to a loved one. The third practice was to do something called mental subtraction. I had to think about a positive experience, think about everything that could have been different to prevent that experience from happening, and then be appreciative that all of the cards landed perfectly to allow me to have that experience. The final gratitude practice was to take a mindful walk outside. I had similar takeaways from each of these practices. It made me feel happy and more appreciative of my life to reminisce about all of the positive things that have happened in my life. After having to keep this gratitude log, I am trying to continue the practice of being more mindful and appreciative of my daily experiences.
    Bold Fuel Your Life Scholarship
    My life is fueled by the little things that I am able to enjoy and my goals for the future. I find that too often people seek out large and extravagant activities to bring them joy. And while that is great, I think it is much easier to focus on the smaller things. My goals also give me something to look forward to and strive for. I get little boosts of motivation when I am able to partake in my hobbies without stress. When I am able to play a video game without thinking about an assignment I have due or spend time with friends and be present in that moment, I am reminded of the good things in life and why I keep going. Other little things that fuel me are beautiful sunsets, fluffy dogs, and warm cups of tea on rainy days. The little things really bring the simplest joys. My goals also have a large role in fueling my life. Having something to work towards reminds me that I can not quit. The end goal will bring many rewards and I do not want to miss out on that. With that being said, goals also relate back to the smaller things that fuel my life. Those smaller milestones that I hit along the way motivate me to keep going. For example, applying for graduation for my bachelor's degree gave me some hope for my future graduate degree. Throughout my life I have had some bad experiences shape how I grew up, but I choose to focus more on the positive side of things. Focusing on my goals and the little things that can bring me joy makes fueling my life all that much more enjoyable and something to look forward to.
    Bold Reflection Scholarship
    Instead of focusing on the negative experiences that have shaped my life, I would rather focus on the positive things. For example, I have always had a lot of responsibilities. I was given chores at a young age, took care of my younger siblings, and got an official job as soon as I turned 16. This gave me a great work ethic as well as prepared me for "the real world". I think without this early preparation I would not be as independent as I am now. I hope in the future, my responsibilities increase and that I am trusted to do bigger things because of my past success with it. My siblings are another positive thing that have influenced my hopes for the future. I am the oldest out of five siblings, so I have spent 18 of my 21 years with other children. I learned how to share the space and interact effectively with them. I do not think my interpersonal effectiveness would be as good if I did not have siblings. My relationship with my siblings gives me hope that in the future my kids are able to have a positive relationship with each other. Lastly, I think that my experience in the educational system has positively shaped my hopes for my future education. In elementary school, I was a part of the Talented and Gifted program. In middle school I did advanced math and in high school I did honors, AP, and CollegeNow (which is college classes offered through the high school). I have always received great support in my academics and have worked hard to get to where I am now in college. I hope that this trend continues and that I am able to work my way through graduate school effectively and efficiently. Algebra Scholarship
    In high school, math was always my favorite subject. It had consistent rules and nothing was up for interpretation; numbers are just numbers. I also like it because it builds on itself and once you have a basic understanding for one subject, you can easily improve your knowledge. While there are different areas of math, like calculus or geometry, most of the basic knowledge is the same. I could go from my algebra class to geometry, pre-calculus, and statistics without too much of a struggle. Another reason I love learning math is because it is almost like riding a bike. After taking a break from using the more complex mathematical functions, you are still able to return without much effort because of the constant usage of those basic math skills. For example, once I graduated high school I did not have to use my more complicated math knowledge for about two years. But since algebra is so common in daily life, I was able to jump back into a college statistics class without incident. Math is important because it has so many real life applications. Math is used in daily life activities such as cooking, work, and budgeting. In cooking, you have to understand proportions and measurements so that you actually make something palatable. I work in health care, so we deal with patient populations constantly. A big portion of my position is calculating our census and finding out when we will have more openings. I also use math and basic algebraic formulas in my budget daily. I use a Google Sheet to keep track of my income, my budgeted spending, and my actual spending. I have another spreadsheet to keep track of my savings. In long term situations, math is beneficial as well. Without a basic understanding of algebra, it is very hard to do things like invest or buy a house. While I do not understand exactly how the stock market works, I have enough of an understanding to oversee the operation of a 529 college savings account. A similar concept follows a retirement savings plan. Recently I have also been looking into the housing market and what kind of savings are required for that. Without my love for math I would not understand any of these important financial decisions. Math has many useful daily life applications that every person has to deal with. There is no way you can go your whole life without having to do a little math, and that is why it is so important to learn. Plus it is great to learn! The information builds on itself and there is not anything that needs to be interpreted for you to learn it.
    Bold Encouraging Others Scholarship
    Sometimes finding the motivation to do the things you want/need to is incredibly difficult. Having encouragement from your loved ones can be incredibly beneficial. The trick I use to encourage those around me is so simple that it only has two steps. First, get to know them. Find out what their goals are and what they want to do. Second, ask questions to direct them towards that goal. It is hard to encourage people when you are not sure what to encourage them to do. Getting to know those goals makes encouragement much easier and much more effective. I have found that asking questions regarding their goals is a good way to put the idea into their brains. The question reminds them that they want to do something, and if they have done it they get to boast about it! If not, it allows a conversation to blossom about that goal and I am able to encourage them to take steps towards their goals.
    Bold Success Scholarship
    Every person has the goal to become successful and reach all of their hopes and dreams. My goals include traveling more out of the country and to every state in the U.S., becoming a social worker and the director of a mental health facility, and living my life to the fullest. In order to be successful with my traveling goal, I have started a separate saving account specifically for travel; I put about $80 a month into the account. I also made a spreadsheet to track the places I want to go, when the best time to travel is, and what to do while I am there. My career goal of becoming a social worker and eventually the director of a mental health facility start with my education and experience. I am starting my educational journey with a bachelor's in community psychology. To become successful, I would need to get a master of social work and I am planning to apply to programs this summer. Experience is also vital to succeed in my field. I currently work in a behavioral health hospital with many social workers and get to actively learn from them on a day-to-day basis. I know the goal of living my life to the fullest is fairly vague. I simply mean that I want to be able to have fun and experience things without worrying about others or feeling like a can't do certain activities. I think a good way to be successful at this is to say yes to plans when you want and say no when you need self-care. I also keep a spreadsheet of these kinds of activities in case I need an idea of what to do.
    Bold Hobbies Scholarship
    One of my favorite hobbies is playing games. There are many things to love about the gaming world. There are multiple consoles to choose from or you could go for a classic card game or board game. You could play by yourself or with friends. It can be cooperative or it can be competitive. There is only one thing that is guaranteed: you will have a good time. Personally, I love playing video games by myself because it allows me to be a part of another world. The aspect of role-playing and being another character is exciting to me and it is nice to have an hour or so where I am not someone who is stressed about school. It is like interactive and immersive reading (which I also love doing). I do not think there is another scenario where I am able to be a stealthy archer and complete quests. Board games and card games are perfect for a night in with loved ones. I enjoy them because it is an easy way to get people together and be social. I am a very extroverted person, so being able to interact with others is extremely crucial for my mental health. Playing games is also a good way to get to know people. I met one of my best friends through a game night and learned basically everything I needed to know about him. When people are at their rawest selves and purely enjoying themselves, you get to see their true colors and I think it is beautiful. When I am not in school, playing more games is something I always try to do more of. I truly believe that being in another world or interacting with your loved ones is something that can bring light to any dark situation.
    Bold Speak Your Mind Scholarship
    I grew up in a household with an emotionally unavailable mother and an angry father. This made speaking my mind, without repercussions, very difficult. As I got older, I made a point to become comfortable with standing up for myself and speaking my mind when I felt what I had to say was important. The most frequent time I commit to speaking my mind is during treatment teams at work. In the treatment team, we all discuss the progress of our patients and plan their discharges. Often, I feel like I am not being listened to when I add my input because I am not a therapist like some of the others in the meeting. Despite that, I still continue to speak my mind. I stay committed to doing that by checking in with my supervisor and making sure that what I am saying is actually important and valid. I believe that speaking out to support the patients in the best way possible is more important than the pride of the other clinicians in the meeting. As an example, one of our patients was scheduled to discharge and the therapist wanted to move him to a different program. After the meeting, we decided he would discharge instead of moving to the other program because he does not respond well to the group environment and would negatively impact the other group. In the next treatment team, the therapist brought up moving him programs again. This happened at least two more times, and each time I reminded them of why we decided against it. I think speaking my mind in that instance is important because of quality patient care.
    Bold Career Goals Scholarship
    The best thing about life is being able to dream and work towards fulfilling those dreams. My dream career has shifted and evolved as I have grown and learned. I have always known that I wanted to work in the mental health field. At first, I wanted to be a behavioral analyst and work with those in the criminal justice system. After that, I wanted to be a therapist, but I was not sure what specialty I wanted or the groups of people that I would want to work with. After I graduated high school, I got a job working in a behavioral health hospital working as a mental health technician. I learned that I loved working with the psychiatric population and got a lot of experience in the field. I have worked in many departments in the hospital including case management and outpatient programs. Currently, I work as the program coordinator for adult outpatient programs. This position has inspired me to finally pick my dream career. I hope to become a social worker and, once I have obtained more experience, the director of a mental health facility. I think that as a social worker I will be able to support many people with mental health struggles and gain the necessary experience to oversee my own department. My ultimate dream is to help and support as many people mentally as possible, and I think that spreading awareness and the availability of treatment is the best way to do that.
    Bold Relaxation Scholarship
    Being a full-time employee and a full-time student creates a lot of opportunities for stress to emerge. I always prioritize my self-care time and ability to relax so that I am still able to accomplish the things that I want and need to. The most basic form of relaxation for me is sitting down on the couch with a blanket and tea to read a book or watch a show. It is a nice, mindless activity that also allows for comfort. This can evolve to become playing a game or drawing a picture instead. As long as I am doing an activity that I find pleasurable without any stressful constraints, it is relaxing to me. I believe that the best way to take care of your mental health is to do a little bit of self-care every day. Sometimes that self-care can look like taking a bubble bath and doing a face mask. Other times it can be saying no to extra tasks at work or saying no to going out with friends and resting instead. For me, one of the worst things I can do to my mental health is overwork myself, so I try to listen to my body and take space where I need to. Mental health awareness is incredibly important to me, and that is why I work in a behavioral health hospital and am going to school for community psychology. I actively try to learn how to best support people's mental health while maintaining mine. I have found that the best way to do that is through plenty of relaxation and self-care.
    Bold Confidence Matters Scholarship
    Confidence is one of the most important attributes a person can have. If you are not confident in yourself and the things you are doing, then chances are you will not do it well. Confidence and self-esteem help us value who we are as people and better ourselves to be the best version of ourselves that we can possibly be. I have had many moments in my life where I actively tried to build confidence. I found that tricking my brain into believing the confidence was already there worked best for me. For example, when I was in middle school I had some body image issues. I did not feel comfortable wearing crop tops because of my stomach. To try and remedy that, I forced myself to wear crop tops every day for at least a week and attempted to remind myself that the only person who saw those flaws was me. Eventually, that message sunk in and I developed the confidence to wear what made me happy. Nowadays, I approach things with a "can do" attitude so that I am not going in with an inherently negative mindset. I believe that being confident in yourself and what you do can help make life more enjoyable. It increases your ability to perform because you are not expecting failure and it increases overall quality of life.
    Bold Motivation Scholarship
    Sometimes motivation can be really hard to find. When you have school, work, bills, and anything else to be stressed about, finding the motivation to do all of these things can become overwhelming. Luckily, I was in therapy for almost a year and work in a group therapy program so I have been able to learn some skills to cope with that. The biggest motivators in my life are my past accomplishments. Knowing that I was able to do all of these things in the past, even with the struggle, motivates me to keep going. I really thrive off of doing things well and getting recognition for my hard work. It helps keep the stress at bay and reminds me that my hard work will pay off in the end. At work I am able to lead an expressive group where we do a three step process to learn new coping skills. Basically you check in with how you are feeling, do a self-soothing activity for 20 minutes, and then check in with your feelings again. One of the prompts I give for self-soothing is "what motivates you to get up in the morning". My patients say things like their kids, the sun outside, and not wanting to get a call from us wondering where they are. Hearing their responses also motivates and inspires me to remember that I do not always need big things to keep me going. Sometimes just getting up so I can eat breakfast is enough.
    Bold Joy Scholarship
    To me joy is the most important thing in ones life. It is the positive emotion that can bring good into your experiences. In my life, I see enough hardship working in the healthcare industry. So embracing joy and seeking it out wherever I can is extremely important to me. I can find joy in my life in many different ways. Joy can come from doing my favorite hobbies, performing well at school, or even just seeing someone else be happy. Doing an activity that I find entertaining is a sure way to get some added joy in my life. Sometimes even doing something that you are not familiar with can be fun as well. I know I also thrive off of validation and knowing I have done a good job, so good grades from teachers or comments from patients always brings me joy. I also deeply care about my loved ones and have strong interpersonal relationships, so seeing my loved ones experiencing joy brings me joy.
    Jameela Jamil x I Weigh Scholarship
    Activism and allyship is something that I have always been curious about, but not quite sure how to approach. I also hear a lot of people say the phrase "it is not my job to educate you on [blank]" so I was never sure how to learn how to best be a part of social activism. I took it upon myself to find the best way to educate myself on many of the social issues impacting the world. I started to register for classes at my university to get a better understanding of the basics of social issues, what is happening, and what can be done. My first class was a basic humanities class where I learned about the definition of allyship and what people fall into target (minoritized groups) and agent (privileged groups) ranks. This gave me the basic knowledge to understand my privilege and gave me ideas on how I could begin to make a difference. My second class was called "Histories and Movements of Gender and Sexuality". This class taught me how minoritized groups in the past have made major movements within their own countries. Currently, I am taking a course on critical diversity studies which discusses in more depth how diversity impacts us and what people are doing to contribute to this idea of diversity. With all of this background knowledge, I feel comfortable and well educated enough to be an active ally and support those who are discriminated against. I attempted to use that knowledge to support the LGBTQ+ community. I have many friends and family who identify with the LGBTQ+ community and I want them to know I care for them and want to support their identities. My step-sibling recently confided in me that they identify as non-binary and wanted to go by a different name. Now, I try to be cognizant of that change and correct those who are not as used to switching between names and pronouns. I also continue this support in my place of work. Many of the adolescents in our program use different names and pronouns than those they were given at birth. I frequently have to remind my colleagues to use people's preferred names and pronouns. Showing up for these communities by taking the time to educate myself and support their identities has impacted me in great ways. Not only does it feel good to help people, I also take pride in trying to better myself for the benefit of others. It has given me the strength and ability to participate in any social cause that I believe in without worry of doing something wrong.
    Bold Legacy Scholarship
    I want my legacy to represent all aspects of me. I can present quite differently depending on what environment I am in and I want my legacy to reflect that. I have always been told that I am very mature for my age and do not act like a [insert number] year old. I hope that people will remember that I was able to become so successful at a relatively young age due to this maturity. With that being said, I also want people to remember that I tried to not rely on that too much. My early independence and maturity came from trauma, so in my adulthood I am trying to be my age and have fun with life. I can be a mature and successful adult while still going out and having fun like a 21 year old should. I hope people also remember my kindness and acceptance towards everyone. I like to think I am sociable and easy to get along with. My legacy should reflect that agreeableness and be supported by the work I do in my career. Since I work in mental health, I need to be kind, supportive, and understanding and that is exactly how I want people to remember me.
    CEW IV Foundation Scholarship Program
    The Black Lives Matter movement was the first major social justice movement that was happening during my adult life. It also unfortunately happened right at the beginning of the pandemic, so everything was in lockdown and people were not supposed to be leaving their houses. Much less going to large gatherings of protests. Fortunately, I was friends with some activists who helped guide me through how to best support this movement while still being safe. My friend group and I went to protests masked and socially distanced when possible. We also used social media to our advantage and posted whatever activism we were a part of on our respective platforms. One member of our group is a Black man who eventually wanted to work for the Seattle Police Department, so these protests were deeply important to him and affected him directly. As time through this movement went on, we saw some changes in our local police departments. Some of these changes included letting go of staff that did not respect Black lives and hiring on a more diverse staff. My friend interviewed and tested to be with the police department multiple times and still has not given up on his dream. The Black Lives Matter movement gave him a platform to work on and the motivation to be on the Seattle Police Department team to make a change within the system. Without this movement, my friend would not be as likely to pursue his dream and desire for change that would help the whole minoritized community. The Black Lives Matter movement also inspired many in my community, including me, to seek out further education on the matter. Everyone that was in my friend group watched the documentary 13th about the 13th amendment and how a certain loophole in the amendment allows for slavery and deems it legal. This movement impact me positively because it was the first one I was able to participate in as an adult. Since I had this great support from my friends, I was able to confidently try different forms of activism and move at my own comfort level. I learned what I stand for and learned ways that I can stand up for what I believe in. I will not lie, I was nervous about going to protests and getting arrested or sprayed with tear gas; not to mention the pandemic going on in the background! So I was happy to learn that I could spread awareness online through my social media, donate money, and sign petitions to enact change within my community.
    Bold Talent Scholarship
    I think that I have three main talents that I practice on a regular basis. The first one is drawing. Art is difficult for me to partake in, but I like doing it and I am not half bad. My skills lie in looking at other people's drawings and recreating them. To practice this skill, I save drawings that I find intriguing in a Pinterest board and then when I have time I try to recreate it. I have quite a knack for doing hairstyles as well. I used to have extremely long hair and did not know how to take care of it correctly, so I would always style it to avoid looking at the frizzy mess. Now that I have learned how to take care of my curls and embrace them, I keep my hair short. Occasionally I will try new hairstyles in my own hair, but I more frequently practice with other people. I do my mom and sisters hair when I visit them and I try to teach others as well. I have found that I can improve my skills by teaching others so that way I can see what I do and how to make it better. My third talent, and probably the most useful, is loading the dishwasher. I am not sure why, but I got really good at loading the dishwasher like Tetris and fitting as much in there as possible while still getting all the dishes clean. This talent is easy to practice because my roommate and I use dishes all day, every day. Since I do not enjoy grocery shopping, my roommate and I divided the chores to where I load the dishwasher and she does the grocery shopping. This ensures that I get in lots of practice towards this skill.
    Bold Best Skills Scholarship
    While I like to think I have many skills, I think the most important one that I have is my desire and continuous attempt to live a healthy lifestyle. I have not always prioritized eating healthy and exercising, so wanting to do that as an adult was a major life change. I have worked on perfecting the skill of being healthy without making it too difficult on my body. At first, I was incredibly hard on myself if I ever skipped a day at the gym or did not eat well that day. Eventually I found a good gym split that worked for me and my needs. As those needs changed, I was able to switch up my routine effectively. I also learned that in terms of healthy eating, diets are not the way to go. As long as you are eating relatively well, an occasional piece of cake is not going to hurt you. This is still a skill I am working at improving, but as the days pass I continually get better at listening to my body and maintaining a healthy lifestyle.
    Bold Loving Others Scholarship
    A lot of people tend to forget that they are loved so I do my best to remind those I care about that I love them with all of my heart. There are a few people who I talk to on a regular basis that get told pretty constantly that I love them. There are others that I very rarely talk to. My brother and I, for example, do not talk unless I am physically at his house visiting. I show him that I am thinking about him by sending TikToks that I think he will enjoy and he will send some to me as well. My sister and I will frequently check in throughout the week on FaceTime and that is a good way for us to show our love. We do not always need to say the words "I love you" and will instead update each other on our lives. The best way for me to show my friends that I love them is to spend quality time together. Everyone has a different boundary on physical affection, which is usually my love language of choice, so instead I try to spend time with people.
    Bold Equality Scholarship
    Equality and diversity is something I am quite passionate about and I try to educate myself about it as much as possible. At my place of work, I frequently see people struggle with using the preferred names and pronouns of our patients. I try to support our patients' wishes in terms of their unique identities, so I will correct the people who accidentally use a dead name or misgender the client. In an attempt to further prevent these occurrences, I added in a column on our census boards to include the patient's preferred pronouns. I also make sure that both the legal name and their preferred name are on all documents and boards so that we can stay within legal guidelines but still respect their diversity. Since making that change and actively calling out people who do not respect our clients identity, my colleagues have done a much better job of being mindful about what they say. Everyone deserves to be treated equally and with respect no matter how they identify.
    Bold Hope for the Future Scholarship
    The main concern I have for the future right now is climate change. Everyone is talking about how we are past the point of no return and in order to save the planet we basically have to immediately get to zero emissions worldwide. The thought of not being able to see the beauty of nature and maybe not be able to raise children on a healthy planet is terrifying to me. I try to be optimistic about the impact I have on the planet because I recycle, walk places, and try to support other green activities. While that is impactful, the one thing that gave me hope was learning about climate change from a scientist that I trust. Science is not my strongest subject and I tend not to educate myself on it too much because of all the confusing jargon. When I was in school the only educator that actually got through to me in this subject was Hank Green in his "Crash Course" videos. This still remains true to this day and I watch his TikToks to try and stay up to date. Recently, he made a video discussing his frustration with people saying that we are "past the point of no return" and that nothing we do at this point will help. When he was in school, the Earth was projected to increase eight degrees every year and now, depending on where you look, the projections are between one and two degrees. He admits that an increase of two degrees is still really bad, but is better than what was predicted! His explanation of the climate crisis gave me hope that the future will be better because things have already gotten better. We can continue to make our small scale impacts for climate change and continue to encourage big corporations to make their changes because every little bit counts. There is a small chance that climate change will be eradicated, but I am hopeful that the effects will not be as drastic as long as we keep working towards bettering the planet.
    Bold Perseverance Scholarship
    Resiliency is something that is not spoken about frequently enough. Those who can persevere through tongue situations are exceptionally strong and deserve more recognition. It is a trait that I identify myself with because of all of the hard work I have put in to get where I am despite the pushback I received from others. I am pursuing a career in mental health and got a job as a mental health technician in order to get some entry level experience. After about seven months of being a technician, a discharge planning position opened up and I applied because the job responsibilities more directly aligned with my ultimate goal of being a social worker. I was hired for the job but was immediately met with resistance from peers who thought I was not qualified for the position. Despite this, I continued to work hard as a discharge planner and was held in high regard by my peers. With this hard work and perseverance, I was able to successfully hold this position for a long period of time before being promoted to program coordinator. It was difficult for me to hear that people did not think I was capable of performing this job, but I was not going to give up. Instead I kept doing what I thought was best and proved that I was worthy.
    Bold Happiness Scholarship
    There are many things in this world that make me happy. Seeing my loved ones enjoy themselves, babies laughing, getting a good grade on an assignment I was worried about, my favorite shows, and so much more. Most of all, being able to laugh as much as possible makes me happy. Humor is so important and there is not enough laughter in our lives, so I appreciate the situations I get into where I can laugh. All of those things consistently bring me joy, but there are a few others that change based on situations in my life. One of my current stressors is graduate school, so things that I can do to alleviate that stress make me happy. I have been trying to find more ways to make me feel prepared and deter me from worrying about the application so much. I did that by reaching out to my selected university and scheduling a zoom meeting with someone on their admissions team. She was able to explain the admissions and application process as well as give me more insight into the program. After that meeting, I felt quite prepared to build my application and that made me extremely happy.
    Bold Music Scholarship
    The song I find most inspiring is "Overwhelmed" by Royal & the Serpent. The lyrics of the song describe the artist's struggle with mental health and some of her triggers and symptoms of her mental illness. The song is engaging and has a powerful message that is not too difficult to discern. I like the way that it brings awareness to mental health struggles without shame or worrying about the negative stigma surrounding mental health. It is inspiring to see that mental health is starting to be destigmatized. I could not count the amount of people I have come across that were hesitant to seek help and treatment because they were afraid or simply did not know it was out there. I am hopeful that this trend will continue and we will see more content around mental health awareness in the media. If there is more representation in music, books, movies, and anything else you can think of I think it could inspire others to seek out the help they need to make themselves healthy and safe.
    Durham-Dodd Dreams Scholarship
    My aunt has been a catalyst in making me who I am today. We are similar in many ways; we are the older sister, we are organized, and we constantly try to multitask. Her influence has helped me learn some valuable skills. My aunt taught me how to use spreadsheets to organize my thoughts to help make decisions; it was because of her that I started my college application and scholarship spreadsheets. She also validated that self-care is important and encouraged me to practice self-care instead of putting others' needs before mine. I try to model myself after her in terms of her work ethic and generosity. She is incredibly dedicated to her education and her career and I am trying to be that way as well. Her generosity with me has also inspired me to try and be more generous with those in my life.
    Bold Wisdom Scholarship
    One of the things that I hate to see in today's society is people making decisions based on other people's wants and needs. People tend to prioritize others over themselves, myself included, and that is something that I want to change. If I could give one sentence of wisdom to the world it would be: this is your life, so live it for you in exactly the way that you want to. I want to remind others that self-care is important and needing to look out for yourself is not selfish, but rather a form of self-care. I am guilty of trying to make others happy because it was easier to do or to avoid conflict. Once I modified my way of life to be mindful of my needs as well, my quality of life has gone up and the ways I am able to help others have improved! If you make yourself happy and are mindful of your needs, you are almost guaranteed to be living your best life.
    Bold Know Yourself Scholarship
    The most valuable thing I have learned about myself is that I thrive under structure and organization. I like to think I can be a "go with the flow" type of person, but when it comes to things with deadlines or things that hold significance in my life I need structure. After I figured that out, a lot of the stress in my life was alleviated. I started making spreadsheets to track things like my homework, budget, and even scholarships. I make sure to add things to my calendar as well so that I can see all of my appointments and guarantee that I do not double book myself. This has allowed me to create an environment where I can see deadlines and progress in real time and get a sense of accomplishment when I am able to check something off the list. Learning that I benefit from structure has not only helped alleviate unnecessary stress, but it also helps me stay motivated and gives me a reason to keep completing tasks.
    Bold Books Scholarship
    I cannot pick one book to be the most inspiring one I have ever read because the whole series is equally as impactful. While it is a fantasy trilogy, The Lord of the Rings was quite inspiring the whole time I read it. It was inspiring on two different levels: personal and within my relationships. Personally, it was great to read an epic adventure with someone who is seen as "little" and "incapable" as the main character. Being Latina and a woman, I have found that many people do not think I am equipped to perform many of the tasks I try to. Reading about Frodo successfully proving those statements wrong inspired me to keep trying. My father is also an avid fan of Middle Earth, so being able to read his favorite series and enjoy it inspired me to find more things we have in common. Strong relationships with parents are hard to come by nowadays and it brought me hope to see that there is at least one thing out there we can connect with.
    Bold Giving Scholarship
    Giving is important to me because I know that I need to recognize my privilege and use it to help others who are not as fortunate. I also know that giving is a good way to show your appreciation for someone whether that is a romantic partner or a colleague at work. Sometimes showing that kind of appreciation is difficult in words, so I find it beneficial to try and give instead. The main way I give back to my community is through providing support. I have learned a lot of tips and tricks through my job on how to best support those in need of processing, so I always give a listening ear. I am good at giving advice on coping skills that have worked for me as well as referrals to facilities that may better suit their needs. To show my appreciation, sometimes I will do tasks for others to give them some more free time or I will give them notes expressing how great I think they are.
    Bold Helping Others Scholarship
    Helping others has always been one of my passions. I was told from a very young age that I had a knack for it, and that is why I decided to pursue it in a more professional manner for my career. While gaining experience in the field of mental health, I learned a good tip for how to help others process what they are going through. In my program, we have a process group that has a set of ground rules that our patients need to follow. One of those is to only use "I" statements and validate others rather than offering advice. I have tried to adopt that into my own practice when processing with my loved ones. Whenever my sister, for example, reaches out to talk I first ask her if she just wants to vent and I listen, if she wants me to validate her, or if she wants actual advice. I have found that is a good way to support others while being mindful of their boundaries and needs. One of the worst things is having someone try and tell you what to do when you just want reassurance that you are okay. That is why when I help others I try to me cognizant of what they want.
    BJB Scholarship
    As a community psychology major, I think that the idea of having and being a part of a community is really important. To me, community is a support system of people who have an understanding of the environment and situation you are in. The people in one's community have a big impact on your mental health and how you grow as a person. I think that because of that, it is important to have healthy people in your community rather than just those who are available. I try to give back to my community by being that support person for my loved ones and through my career. If someone I care about is in need of a listening ear, validation, or some advice I always try to be available to them if I can. In terms of my career, I work at a behavioral health hospital. This means that I can give back to the community through mental health treatment. My department provides group therapy through Zoom, so we are able to reach people all over the state of Washington. A lot of our client base in the hospital are people who are homeless, so not only are we able to support the community mentally, but we are also able to provide food, shelter, and resources to help them once they discharge from the hospital. I am a community psychology major, as stated earlier, and hope to continue my higher education to a masters in social work. I work as the adult program coordinator for Fairfax Behavioral Health's outpatient programs. During my two years in this position, I have helped grow the department from having two programs with a maximum census of 20 patients to having six programs with a maximum census of 70 patients. I like to try a lot of different hobbies just so I can experience new things. I enjoy cooking, baking, video games, art, and hiking (just to name a few). My vision for the future includes becoming a director of a mental health facility so I can continue to provide support to those who need it and hopefully reduce the stigma surrounding mental health. I also hope to travel the world as much as possible, again so I am able to experience as many things as possible. Diversity is extremely important to me and I believe that we need to see things from many perspectives in order to best serve those in our community.
    Bold Longevity Scholarship
    The best way to live a long and healthy life, in my opinion, is to do things for you. Eating healthy, exercising, and participating in activities is a chore if you are doing it because other people are telling you to. There is also not much mental benefit to it. I have personally found that once I started doing these things because I wanted to, I saw much more improvement in my physical and mental health. Throughout my whole life I struggled with eating the right foods and staying active. I did not find much joy in exercise or sports and would rather eat a French fry than an apple. Now, I feel much more motivated to participate in these things. I tried exercising with one of my friends who helped keep me motivated until I could self motivate through visible progress. Once I started noticing a physical difference, I wanted to alter my diet to best support my muscular gains. Then it started to aid in energy and I actually wanted to do more things throughout the day. Since noticing the progress and actually wanting to be healthy, I am living life to the absolute fullest. I am doing it for myself, not because someone else wants me to.
    Matthews Overcoming Adversity Scholarship
    The financial burden of attending university has always been a major stressor in my life. I knew that my parents would not be able to help support me through the four years and there was no form of savings put in place due to their low-income status. Unfortunately, the reality that I would be paying for my tuition entirely out of pocket did not hit me until it was too late. This stress and late realization prompted me to reject my school of choice and instead attend a community college in my home state, despite that being the last thing I wanted to do. On a trip to Seattle, I visited my aunt who helped me research a way to be able to attend my university of choice (the University of Washington) without going into extreme financial debt. She started a 529 college savings account and explained to me that putting my savings in there would grow faster than the money in a normal savings account. My aunt also started research into what would grant me residency status in the universities eyes so I could pay in-state tuition rather than out-of-state. We created this master plan of how I would attend community college in Washington, work full time, and obtain residency before transferring to the University of Washington-Bothell. She continued to support me through the next two years of community college and kept me motivated to keep going. Working full-time at a mentally exhausting job and doing school at the same time was not the best for my mental health. Without the positive, continuous support I received from her, I do not think I would have made it to where I am in my higher education journey now. With her support, I was able to carry out this plan, transfer to the University of Washington-Bothell, and grow in my career. I intend to continue this theme of positive support in a couple of ways. Firstly, I am going to make sure I do not let my pride get in the way and actually accept support when I need it. One of the hardest things to do is simply say that you need help. Secondly, I want to be a positive support person for those in my life. I actively try to be a positive light for my sisters, my roommate, and anybody else who needs it. Since I understand the struggles that come with higher education and life in general and I myself have overcome that adversity, I think I am the perfect person to be part of that positive support system.
    Robert Lee, Sr. and Bernice Williams Memorial Scholarship
    Adversity is something I have come to know quite well as a young, Latina woman in the professional world. I entered my career as a mental health technician at the age of eighteen. Many people do not do that job before they are 23 because of the mental toll it takes on you and the mature nature of the job. I, however, believed I could do it and thought of it as a good way to get experience while pursuing my degree in community psychology. Surprisingly, not many people had too much of an issue with me working on the floor with them. People started to be wary once I switched to discharge planning. The job of discharge planning was typically done by those with bachelor's degrees, but it was not necessary to do the job well. Once I was hired to discharge plan on my core unit, I started to face some difficulty from other staff. They believed I was too young and inexperienced to do the job well and even took it as far as submitting a formal complaint to corporate. Despite all of the pushback from my colleagues, I continued to discharge plan to the best of my ability and provide the best care possible to my patients. What my coworkers thought of me was not important as long as the patients had trust in my abilities and wanted to continue working with me. Eventually, I overcame this adversity and proved myself to be worthy of the job. My title evolved and I got promoted to program coordinator of outpatient services. This was obviously a much bigger responsibility, so I was glad to see that my superiors thought I was competent enough for the job. I still hold this title and it has been almost two years. I hope to continue giving back to the community through my work. Being an inpatient behavioral health hospital, we get many admits who are homeless. It makes me feel good that we are able to support them mentally as well as give them shelter, food, and a discharge plan that could help them stabilize off the streets. In my current position, we provide programming through telehealth services, so we are able to serve those all over the state of Washington. The fact that we are able to provide support for those less fortunate in the immediate community as well as those farther away leads me to believe that I am making a difference in my community, and I want to continue doing that.
    Bold Turnaround Story Scholarship
    Attending university has been a significant stressor in my life due to the financial strain it would place on me. Despite that, I applied to many schools and got accepted into University of Washington. I accepted the offer and proceeded with admission until I was met with a $500 deposit necessary for the dorms and dining hall. That amount of money was impossible for me to be able to pay, so I rescinded my acceptance and planned to go to community college in a state that I did not like. After a pep talk from my aunt and a lot of research and planning, my aunt and I were able to come up with a plan. This plan would allow me to get out of the state I did not like and attend University of Washington without as much stress from the finances. We spoke about me attending community college to get a transfer degree and working full time simultaneously so that I could achieve residency status. This allowed me to substantially reduce the cost of tuition for the first two years and then only pay a fifth of what I would have at the university itself. Housing was no longer an issue because I could live with my aunt until I could afford an apartment on my own. We also put more of an emphasis on allocating savings into a 529 college savings plan. Ultimately, I was able to reach all of my educational and monetary goals after thinking that I would have to withstand my worst options in terms of schooling. I am proud that I was able to be creative and put in the work, with my aunt, to actually achieve my goals and not give up at the first sight of conflict.
    Bold Make Your Mark Scholarship
    As someone who has struggled with depression and anxiety personally, I hope to positively impact the world of mental health. I have many loved ones who suffer with mental health disorders and even lost a cousin to suicide. This has led me to pursue a career in the field so that I can hopefully prevent others from going through that as well. Since being in the field, I have learned that many people avoid seeking treatment because of the stigma that surrounds mental health. For some reason, people do not see mental health equally as debilitating as physical health. I hope that I can increase awareness and reduce the stigma so that people feel comfortable talking about and addressing their mental health. I intend to continue working in the mental health field and once I get the necessary degrees and licensure, I will be able to provide the mental health care that I want to advocate for. I hope that I am able to help as many people as I can and give them a positive experience surrounding their mental health rather than a negative one.
    Bold Passion Scholarship
    Often I find it difficult to think of things I am passionate about until someone gets me talking about it. One of the things I have passionately spoken about is the classes offered at universities and how students go about choosing them. My school is a smaller campus of the larger University of Washington, so our class selection is limited and we only know what will be offered the term prior to instruction. On top of that, since I am a transfer student I have a limited amount of time to get the required elements to graduate. With all of those things in mind, I found that many people register for classes based on what is necessary to graduate rather than what interests them. Higher education is supposed to be something that a student enjoys and wants to pursue, not a weary task that needs to be done. In my experience, it is exceedingly difficult to look forward to class and complete the assignments if it is not something I actually want to learn about. I wish universities could be more transparent about the courses they offer so that we can plan out what courses we would like to take and when. I think that if I were able to plan things a year at a time, I would feel reassured that my classes would be interesting and I would be meeting the graduation requirements. I am incredibly passionate about my education and want to be able to enroll in courses that amplify that passion, not diminish it.
    Bold Driven Scholarship
    Setting goals was something that I struggled with a lot when I was younger. I could not think of a single thing that I wanted to accomplish in life. The things that were presented to me for my future either felt like something I was required to do or it felt unattainable. Now I have goals for my education, career, and personal life. I have always been interested in how the mind works and what makes us do the things we do, so I wanted to pursue an education in something related to that. I reached that goal with my undergraduate since I am currently working towards a degree in community psychology. After I graduate, my goal is to go to Ohio State University and get a masters degree in social work. My career goals are similar to that of my education as it builds on what I am already doing. My current position is program coordinator of a behavioral health hospital's outpatient programs. The short term goal I have is to intern at my place of work and then stay on as a social worker post graduation. My long term goal is to become the director of a mental health facility to continue helping people on a larger scale. In my personal life, my current goals revolve around travel. I suddenly realized a few months ago that I am in charge of my own life and can travel as much as I want. This encouraged me to set goals to travel to every state in the U.S. and go to as many foreign countries as possible. The goal that I am closest to obtaining is a trip to another country after I graduate with my bachelors.
    Bold Simple Pleasures Scholarship
    I wholeheartedly believe that simple pleasures are some of the most important things to hold onto in our lives. Nothing is better than being able to engage in something easy that brings you joy as a form of self-care. I think that participating in these pleasures are incredibly beneficial in maintaining good mental health. In my life, I get pleasure from things in nature, my friends and family, and my hobbies. When exploring a park, nothing brings me more joy than seeing the turtles sunbathing on a log. In my office there is a Swiss cheese plant and seeing the new leaves unfurling and the plant itself thriving always makes me feel good. Making sure that my loved ones are happy is one of my top priorities, so seeing them post about fun activities they are doing or their accomplishments brings me joy. In terms of my hobbies, the simplest of pleasures is being able to do something I am fond of (such as drawing or trying a new recipe) without the stress of other responsibilities. Each of the things I have listed make me happy because they show me growth, happiness, and serenity. With the current state of the world, things are chaotic and less than beautiful. Having these simple pleasures to engage in reminds us that there is good and beauty in this world; you just need to know where to look for it.
    Scholarship Institute Future Leaders Scholarship
    In my life, I think I demonstrate leadership within my family quite a bit. As the oldest child in my family, I have naturally obtained a leadership role. I know that my siblings sometimes model themselves after me so I try to be a good influence on their actions. I also would help delegate chores and make sure everything that needed to be done got completed. Since my mom is a single mother, I had to take on a parental role when she was unable to be there for us due to work or school. I am usually the person trusted by my parents to organize things and oversee whatever tasks they had planned for us. I would always babysit my younger siblings or other family members. I think all of these things demonstrate how I have taken on a leadership role in my family. Great leadership has a few important characteristics. First, I think great leadership is shown through teamwork. I always appreciate a leader who acts like a team member rather than a dictator. Second, open communication is important for leadership. Anyone on the team should feel comfortable speaking with their leader and not feel afraid of repercussions. Third, fairness is key to great leadership. If a leader is not fair, there is no trust and then there is no point in collaboration. Each of these characteristics describes what great leadership means to me and what is necessary to obtain that status. Being a leader now is important to me because it helps give me practice for becoming an effective leader later on in my career. I eventually would like to become the director of a mental health facility, and I would like to be a director whom my employees enjoy working with. I also think that being a leader can teach you many beneficial skills for your education, career, and personal life.
    Bold Investing Scholarship
    I try to save as much as I can for as many things as I can. I try to have bucket funds for vacations and car expenses and then save generally as well as for my college fund and to buy a house. In terms of investing, I have a 529 savings account to supplement my college fund. While I am not in charge of what specific stocks my money goes into, I do collaborate with my financial advisor. Together we make sure that my money is working for me in the best way possible. The best tip that he has taught me is to not make large unnecessary movements in my funds. When I had a reduction in income, I wanted to make sure that I could use the money if I had to so I asked him to move my funds into more conservative stocks. He suggested that I only move the amount of money I would need in a year to the more conservative stocks and allow the rest to continue growing as usual. This was a good tip to remind me that not everything I have invested needs to move together and I can do things separately to get the most bang for my buck.
    Robert F. Lawson Fund for Careers that Care
    My name is Michelle, I am 21 years old and I am attending the University of Washington-Bothell in pursuit of a bachelor's degree in community psychology. I have been going to school full time as well as working a full time job at a behavioral health hospital. I work as a program coordinator in the hospital's outpatient programs. During my two years in outpatient, I have helped grow our programs immensely. When I was hired, there were two programs with a maximum census of 20 patients. Now we have six programs with a maximum census of 70 patients. In my spare time, I enjoy doing a lot of activities. I have recently discovered that I live my life in a jack of all trades, master of none type of way. Over the summer, I try to spend as much time outside as possibly either floating, hiking, or just reading in a park. At home I find joy in cooking and baking as well as drawing. I also enjoy playing video games or board games with my friends. Before I speak about how I will use my career to make a positive impact on the world, I want to give some background on what my career goals are. After I finish my undergraduate degree, I hope to go to graduate school and get my masters in social work. I want to continue in my current place of work and do social work there after I graduate. After gaining experience in that field, I want to become the director of a mental health facility. I think that a career in social work is the perfect way for me to leave a positive impact on the world. Social workers are able to provide mental health care for their clients and so much more. Social workers also assist in providing housing services and referrals to other forms of treatment. The social workers in my facility provide case management and lead a variety of therapeutic groups on top of the aforementioned duties. Once I make my way to being the director of a mental health facility, I will be able to positively affect people in all those ways and it will be influenced by my expertise. As a director, I will be able to take all of my experience in other facilities and use that knowledge to form the best mental health care that I can.
    Bold Growth Mindset Scholarship
    To me, having a growth mindset is to be future-oriented. I do not like to dwell on the past or hyper-fixate on how things could have been. Instead, I like to think about things I can do in the future or ways I can improve myself. In a nutshell, that is how I keep a growth mindset. In my career, I always ponder ways I can move forward in my position and grow. I do that within my current position as well; during my time in this job, I have helped our programs grow over triple in size. When thinking about my education, I do not stop at what I am currently doing. I think past graduation and think about what I can do in terms of graduate school. I apply this method of thinking to my hobbies as well. I like to continue to practice my current hobbies as a way to expand my knowledge and perfect my skill. I also like to go out of my comfort zone and try new things. These are all ways in which I keep a growth mindset within my personal life.
    Bold Patience Matters Scholarship
    Patience is important to me because it gives me hope to believe things will work out in the end. The old saying "good things come to those who wait" has to come from somewhere, so I choose to believe it. I am a strong believer in working hard to get the things you want, but being patient in regards to seeing those results is also important. It helps slow things down and control the progress. That helps ensure that what is being done is being done correctly. I think being patient is important to me as well because it helps calm some of my anxiety. If I tell myself "be patient; you do not have to worry about that right now" it helps reduce the anxiety because there is nothing I can do to control that specific situation. Being patient allows one to see real progress being made, they get to see that it is done correctly, and it reduces anxiety.
    Bold Friendship Matters Scholarship
    To me, friendship means being there for a person you care about and supporting each other's needs to the best of your ability. I think the most important thing I said there was "to the best of your ability". When I have contemplated the meaning of friendship with some of my peers, they tend to think of it as an all or nothing situation. Either you meet all of these demands or we can not be friends. I think that is unreasonable to request. Everyone has limitations with what kind of support they can provide, people's needs are different, and people have different boundaries when it comes to friendships. I think to be a good friend, one has to take all of these things into consideration and create something beautiful from it. Friendship is compromising the things you can to build a strong and caring support system between people that you enjoy spending time with.
    Bold Self-Care Scholarship
    Self-care is one of the most highly emphasized things in my place of work. We always make sure that each patient has at least one thing of self-care planned to do each day after the groups are finished. I think it is important for me not to ask anything of my patients that I would not do myself, so I try to practice self-care every day as well. Sometimes self-care can be hygiene related for me. I will take a nice bath with salts and light some candles; maybe include a face mask in there too. Self-care can also be confidence related and I will dress up or do my hair and makeup. Self-care is also productivity based for me. I feel good when I have a clean space and get my tasks done, so washing my blankets or cleaning my room can be self-care. Simple rest and relaxation with a good show is also a great form of self-care. Basically anything that makes me feel good in the moment counts as self-care for me. It is completely dependent on my needs in that moment. This impacts my life in an immensely positive way. Being able to listen to my body's needs and meet them improves my mood, motivation, and so much more. If I feel like my needs are met, I am much more willing to complete the tasks I need to and to help support the needs of others.
    Andrew Perez Mental Illness/Suicidal Awareness Education Scholarship
    I am very deeply immersed into the world of mental illness and coping skills since I work in a behavioral health hospital. Being there has helped me reduce my perceived stigma surrounding mental health and it has helped me be more comfortable with openly discussing mental health. I try to inspire my patients to not let their mental illness prevent them from living their lives through sharing my experience as well. The diagnosis my therapist and I were exploring was dysthymia. The easiest description of this is a less intense but prolonged depression. It does not inhibit my ability to perform daily activities, but it keeps me in a low mood constantly. That makes it fairly difficult to indulge in my passions or get excited about them, but I try not to let it affect me too much. My passions include doing things in the kitchen, going outdoors, spending time with loved ones, traveling, and artistic activities. I find a lot of joy in baking and cooking food. I think the ability to be creative and make something your own and enjoy eating it is a good way to meet multiple basic needs. Food brings natural joy, it is a good way to socialize, and it nourishes your body. When it is warm outside, I like being able to go on hikes and explore nature. I also love anything near or in the water and being able to simply sit in a park and read a book. Spending time with my friends and family is one of my favorite ways to perform self-care. The support that we give each other and being able to socialize is incredibly important for mental health. Traveling is a good way to see other cultures and gain experiences. It is also versatile because you can go by yourself or have a group. In terms of artistic activities, I am decent at drawing and enjoy doing it. I try to branch out and paint as well. My job has presented me with the ability to learn many coping skills, a few of which I actually use. Firstly, doing any of my aforementioned passions is a great way for me to cope with my mental illness. Participating in things I enjoy is a good way for me to know that my illness is not controlling my life. Secondly, I try to listen to my body and take breaks to relax when necessary. Even if I have work to do or if I should go to the gym, if I am physically or mentally not up for it I know going would do more harm than good. Thirdly, I like to take some actual grounding or DBT skills when I am experiencing intense anxiety. My favorites are paced breathing and the TIPP skill. Some of my goals and aspirations for the future relate to my passions as well as my career. I hope to travel to a variety of foreign countries, but I also have a goal to go to each U.S. state at some point. I want to build as many connections with people as I can and hopefully carry those throughout my life. My educational and career goals are to get a masters of social work and become a director of a mental health facility.
    I Am Third Scholarship
    My goal with my education, and eventually life, is to get my desired degrees and succeed in my career path in order to be able to live the life I desire. In regards to my education, I want to finish getting my bachelors in community psychology and then move onto a masters degree in social work. I hope to have that guide me towards being a social worker and providing therapy in some sense. Over time, I hope to gain experience in that field and progress into more managerial roles. My end goal is to become the director of a mental health facility. I want this educational and career path to lead me towards my dream life where I can support myself and a family and travel the world. My reasoning for choosing this career path is my aptitude for helping people. I have always been good at being supportive for my friends and family so I wanted to find a way to incorporate that into my job. People always say that if you love your job you will never work a day in your life and I believe that can be true. I want to do the things I do because they make me happy, not because I have to. I already have started my career and education in mental health and it is currently working out to make me feel good and productive. I want to be able to travel throughout my life because I love the idea of experiencing new and diverse things. I enjoy seeing the sights of foreign places, experiencing their culture, eating their food, and everything else that comes along with it. I also like that I am able to meet new people and form friendships that never would have happened if I stayed in my home area. This vision will impact the world positively in a couple ways. Being a social worker has the ability to positively impact people in a multitude of ways. Social workers can provide therapy and teach their clients skills. They can also help with finding specific providers or referrals to other services such as housing or food. Traveling allows me to enrich my world view and diverse knowledge so that I can better serve my clients as a social worker. Being able to experience other people's cultures first hand helps me understand the context they come from. It also will improve my mental health since I am doing something I enjoy, which in turn motivates me to positively impact others.
    Bold Acts of Service Scholarship
    There are a variety of things I like to do to try and help others. Some things relate to my career while others are more subtle acts of kindness in my daily life. In regards to my career, I work in a behavioral health hospital in the outpatient programs. As program coordinator, my main duties are to help grow the program and make sure the day-to-day happenings go smoothly. Since I started with the department, I have helped grow the department from having two programs with a maximum census of 20 to having six programs with a maximum census of 72. It also converted from being in person to telehealth due to the pandemic, so now we are able to help those all over the state rather than just those in close proximity. I feel a great sense of pride knowing that I am able to help support those in need with their mental health issues. The more subtle acts of service I like to perform are fairly diverse. I like to go through my things frequently and donate them to second-hand stores. I also try to pay a compliment to at least one person every day. I try to be a good listener and shoulder to lean on for my loved ones as well. I always want to be able to support the most important people in my life, so I try to do anything I can to make them feel better.
    Lillian's & Ruby's Way Scholarship
    My name is Michelle. I am 21 years old, studying to get my bachelor's in community psychology, and working as a program coordinator at a behavioral health hospital. When not at school or work I enjoy reading, playing video games, baking, and going on hikes. I am the oldest child in my family out of five siblings and have seven pets throughout all of my households. My desired career field stems from what I am currently doing at the hospital. Currently, as a program coordinator, I am in charge of managing the programs day to day happenings and helping facilitate program growth. I hope to advance into social work and do that for a while before maturing into being a mental health facility director. I believe that I can make a continuous impact through this career path. There is always a need for social work and similar services. I love working with populations that struggle with mental health. Many people who seek treatment feel alone because mental health is so stigmatized, so I enjoy knowing I am a positive aspect of their life. I think that since I am privileged with the ability to have this job and the capability to help, I should use that privilege to help those in need. My interest in this field came from my personal experience with mental illness from a young age. Many people in my life suffer from anxiety and depression including my stepmom and my sister. I experience dysthymia and I sadly lost a cousin to suicide when I was 15. I have always been drawn to helping people and listening to their problems. At first, I wanted to pursue becoming a therapist because my loved ones told me I was good at listening and giving advice. That desire evolved into social work because of the more widespread aid I can do in social work rather than therapy. The books I read are mostly romance with a touch of fantasy thrown in. Most of them have a strong female lead character that I like to relate to and there is always an unbreakable bond between the characters whether that is a romantic, platonic, or familial bond. These books have taught me that your relationships with others are important and you can leave an impact on people's lives, but being strong and independent is also important. This has molded my goals to include supporting interpersonal relationships and being a strong, independent role model for others.
    Bold Science Matters Scholarship
    My favorite scientific discovery has to do with the planets. I am very interested in the planets and stars, so I get very excited when I learn new things about them. In 2015, we discovered that Pluto is incredibly geologically active with massive mountains. This discovery implies that cold planets that are far from the sun can still muster up enough energy to create liquid water and possibly support life. Similar discoveries were found on Saturn's moons and Mars. This interests me because the possibility of life existing on other planets is exciting! Who knows what kind of things this life is creating and how their "civilizations" work. If we were ever able to connect with other intelligent life forms and compare notes, that would open up a whole new world of possibilities. I like to believe in the possibility of the unusual (like aliens) because there is just so much out there undiscovered and there is no way we are the only ones who have evolved to be like this.
    Bold Art Matters Scholarship
    My favorite piece of art is a self portrait combined with a poem and a list of song recommendations. One of my patients made this art piece for me before he was discharged from inpatient and it has stayed in my possession since. This patient was extremely paranoid and spent most of his time in his bedroom. He would occasionally come out and talk to me, but mostly just isolated. That is why his drawing means so much to me. Giving me a self portrait and poem depicting his feelings was incredibly vulnerable for him and someone as paranoid as he was would not entrust someone with that information. The list of songs were also inspired by what he noticed I listened to during outside time and thought I would enjoy. I was honored to be gifted this extremely vulnerable and personal piece, so it remains my favorite piece of art to this day.
    Bold Dream Big Scholarship
    My dream life is honestly fairly similar to the actual life I am living. I want to get my education, get a job in my desired field, buy a house and start a family, and do more of my hobbies. I am currently getting my bachelors in community psychology and looking into a masters degree for social work. In my dream world, I would go to Ohio State's online option for a MSW. Right now I work as a program coordinator for a behavioral health hospital's outpatient programs. This puts me on the correct path towards my dream job as a director of a mental health facility. Buying a house and starting a family is one of my dreams that seems harder to obtain. I am saving little bits of money so that I can afford a down payment on a house, but most of my money is currently focused towards school. I also do not plan on having kids or getting married until I complete graduate school, so that dream is on hold as well. As for doing more of my hobbies, I find that I am consumed by work and school at most times so I do not do things that bring me joy as often as I would like to. In my dream life, I would read at least a book or two every month, participate in game nights more frequently, and spend time drawing. For right now, I just try to fit those things in where I can and make sure I make the most of my breaks off from work and school.
    Bold Independence Scholarship
    To me, being independent means that you can rely on yourself to do the necessary things in your life. In the most simple of ways, one is independent when they can call to make their own doctors appointments or pay for their own car insurance. I also think it is important to highlight that the most effectively independent people are also not afraid to ask for help when they need it. Being independent has impacted me in many ways. For example, it has given me a positive reputation in the professional world. Most people do not think that an 18 year old, which is how old I was when hired, is capable of performing the necessary job duties to be a mental health technician. That fact stayed consistent when I moved into discharge planning and then program coordination. The managers in each of these departments knew how independent and mature I was for my age, so I ultimately was trusted with the job responsibilities. It also impacts me on an internal level. Being able to successfully live my life independently has greatly improved my confidence. I feel like I am able to do anything I set my mind to, but I am also aware that I can ask for help if I need it.
    Bold Influence Scholarship
    As a program coordinator in a behavioral health hospital, I always advocate for mental health awareness and treatment. If I were a highly influential figure, I would stand for that for multiple reasons. Firstly, my family is greatly affected by mental illness. I myself struggle with depression and I have plenty of loved ones who suffer from anxiety and depression. I even lost a cousin, Joey, who completed suicide because of his struggle with mental health. This topic hits me close to home, so I want to make sure people are aware of its effect. Secondly, I see the effects of mental illness first hand. Working in the behavioral health hospital, I see clients with a variety of diagnoses and situations. I want others to be aware that they are not alone in their experience and that things will get better. Thirdly, I have seen the effects of treatment. There is nothing more rewarding than seeing one of your patients improve and get to be discharged. Not many people know their options in regards to mental health treatment, so I would do my best to make it known to people.
    Hobbies Matter
    One of my favorite hobbies is playing games. There are many things to love about the gaming world. There are multiple consoles to choose from or you could go for a classic card game or board game. You could play by yourself or with friends. It can be cooperative or it can be competitive. There is only one thing that is guaranteed: you will have a good time. Personally, I love playing video games by myself because it allows me to be a part of another world. The aspect of role-playing and being another character is exciting to me and it is nice to have an hour or so where I am not someone who is stressed about school. It is like interactive and immersive reading (which I also love doing). I do not think there is another scenario where I am able to be a stealthy archer and complete quests. Board games and card games are perfect for a night in with loved ones. I enjoy them because it is an easy way to get people together and be social. I am a very extraverted person, so being able to interact with others is extremely crucial for my mental health. Playing games is also a good way to get to know people. I met one of my best friends through a game night and learned basically everything I needed to know about him. When people are at their rawest selves and purely enjoying themselves, you get to see their true colors and I think it is beautiful. All of these options and the benefits of gaming are why it is one of my favorite pass times. When I am not in school, playing more games is something I always try to do more of. I truly believe that being in another world or interacting with your loved ones is something that can bring light to any dark situation.
    Bold Impact Matters Scholarship
    One way I try to have a positive impact on the world is through my job. Since I work in mental health, I am in the perfect position to learn the skills to help people. What I love so much about that is that I am able to help my patients as well as my loved ones. At work, I am in many therapy groups that teach me how to have healthy and effective communication with others and how to best support their needs. People in our programs are in a very vulnerable state and being able to support them and help them reach their goals is such a wonderful experience. This has translated into my personal life as well. My sister reaches out to me because I am able to just listen and validate her if needed or offer advice if that's what she would like instead. I try to be a good listening ear for all of my loved ones because I want to be a positive aspect of their lives. I think that being a good listener and a supportive person is a perfect way to have a positive impact on the world.
    Bold Optimist Scholarship
    Being optimistic when you are having a hard time is one of the toughest things to do. I know there have been plenty of times in my life when things have seemed hopeless, but I somehow made it through. I have a few different things that I tell myself when trying to stay optimistic. First, when there is a situation that is out of my control I actively remind myself that my worrying is not going to do anything because the situation is out of my hands. Second, if I am having a bad day or week I try to think about the positives that have occurred in that time period. Third, if I am struggling and the second step does not work I remind myself of why the situation is difficult and when that circumstance will be over. These reminders have taught me that optimism works! I have always found that at least one of these three techniques works to bring me out of my rut. If you believe something can get better, then it will.
    Bold Love Yourself Scholarship
    I think that I have many wonderful qualities, so it is hard to pick just one to speak about. I am very independent, determined, and sociable. While all of these things are great, I think my desire and ability to be incredibly organized is the quality that I love the most. Being organized has helped me immensely throughout my school career. I enjoy creating spreadsheets to keep track of all things for my school so that I make sure I do not miss anything. I have a spreadsheet to keep track of all my assignments and their due dates. I have another to keep track of my degree requirements and the classes I've taken or need to take. Another spreadsheet is in charge of keeping track of my budget. Having this organized outlook on all aspects of my life helps me in all aspects of life. It has improved my time management at work and school. It has made me more actively aware of my spending habits. And it has done much more to enrich my life.
    Bold Memories Scholarship
    Even though I am also pursuing a bachelor's degree and am a full time student, I think my experiences at work have impacted me the most recently. Granted, going to school and completing that work has given me plenty of experiences, memories, and lessons learned. I just think that the time I spend at my job is more prominent. I work as a program coordinator for a behavioral health hospital's outpatient programs and I am rather young for the position. That combined with the fact that I am a woman has led me to face adversity and presented many struggles for me to succeed in my position. When I was first hired two years ago, people thought I was underqualified for the position. It got to the point that someone filed a formal complaint with corporate to say that I got the job under unfair circumstances. The memory of being called to meet with risk management to discuss how I went about applying and interviewing for the job really changed my perspective. I realized that despite how well I perform or the hard work I put in, I will still have to continuously fight to prove that I am worthy for my position. Two years later, I still hold the same title and have more responsibilities. While it is less, I am still questioned about my qualifications for my job and I fight just as hard to prove I can do it.
    Bold Be You Scholarship
    I am a firm believer in being yourself, no matter what others tell you. In my daily life I pride myself in having healthy boundaries and always prioritizing my values. I have a couple ways that I stay true to myself in my daily life that involve using those boundaries and values. At my job, I try to show my personality while still being professional. I do not think that I should have to completely change myself to fit in a professional setting. Instead, I make sure to take note of the environments I am in and then determine what is appropriate in those situations. I do a similar thing with my personal relationships as well. I have a specific example of a friendship that had some conflict in which a third party wanted us to alter our friendship in order to make her comfortable. I did not appreciate her attempt to change how I interact with my friends, so I attempted to communicate that with my friend. The three of us had a conversation in which we determined what everyone wants, what our values are, and what boundaries were desired. Eventually, we were able to come to a compromise and that friendship remains strong.
    Larry Darnell Green Scholarship
    I am the child of a single parent; my mother raised me and my two sisters by herself. Being that I am the oldest sibling, I ended up obtaining a sort of secondary parental role. I was always meant to be the responsible one, the trustworthy one, and the one you can lean on if you needed something. I also have always wanted to be in a position to help people and try to be agreeable to others. Having all of those expectations and natural personality traits shaped who I wanted to become as I grew up. My educational goals have been fairly consistent throughout my whole life. I have always wanted to go to college and get a degree; I just didn't know what major. As I got to thinking about what I enjoyed, I realized that I really enjoyed helping people and being in a role where people can look up to me. I was also told by multiple people that I would make a good therapist due to my calm and collected attitude and ability to communicate clearly. So I thought that I would excel at and enjoy being a community psychology major and eventually getting a master's degree in social work. I took the skills I learned from being a second parent and applied that to my education. Being able to listen to and comfort people and be that shoulder to cry on encouraged me to pursue a career related to social services, whether that be therapy or social work. My aptitude in aiding to solve the problems and enact change lead me to focus on social work. In that field, I am able to help support and understand people's struggles and, most importantly, have a positive impact on their lives. This directly relates to how I want to give back to my community. My bachelor's in community psychology has a focus on how communities impact a person's psyche and how to enact change that would be beneficial. Then, when I move on to my master's in social work, I will be able to work directly with those clients and help them make the necessary changes to improve their quality of life. I hope that my desire and capability to help people and enrich their lives will push me to actively help those in need. I believe that continuing my education will support me through that journey and give me the necessary tools to do that effectively.
    Bold Financial Literacy Scholarship
    I am very fortunate in that I have pretty strong financial literacy. I have taken a personal finance class and have learned from my parents mistakes on how to be better with my own money. I think the biggest lesson I have learned is to save and use my money wisely. I have been saving money in a 529 account for about 3 years to aid in paying for my graduate school and it is going to help me with a lot of debt. I also set aside money to save for larger expenses that come up infrequently like paying for car insurance or a vacation. This helps me not have to go over budget on the months these expenses come up. Also, only using the money that you actually have when using credit cards is essential. I assign specific spending categories to each card I have and then also a spending limit. By only spending the money I have and in the specific categories I have assigned to my credit card, I have raised my credit score and practiced good financial habits.
    Finesse Your Education's "The College Burnout" Scholarship
    From Flop to Bop: The Musical College Experience by Mickey M. *Note: There is more of a literal emphasis on the song titles and less of a literal emphasis on the song's actual intended meaning* 1. Nervous by The Neighborhood 2. anxiety by blackbear and FRND 3. What A Perfect Day For Crying by iamnotshane 4. Holding Out by eleventyseven 5. You're Gonna Go Far, Kid by The Offspring 6. Don't Stop Me Now by Queen 7. Greatness by THE GRTNS
    Pandemic's Box Scholarship
    COVID-19 was the best thing to happen to me. Before the pandemic, I started college, started a new job, didn’t have friends, and lacked independence. I took online classes at a community college to avoid work conflict. The pandemic was able to provide me with more options for classes since nothing was in person. I completed my associates degree with all the desired classes. I work in a hospital, so staff were always needed. Having job security was a big relief. Since it’s a mental health facility, I was able to gain skills to cope with the sudden increase in isolation. My social support increased because I formed friendships with my coworkers. This led to me meeting my best friend and having a strong support system during these unprecedented times. I increased my independence by moving out of my aunt's house and getting an apartment by myself. While being in this pandemic has been strange, I love how everything turned out. Without it, I would be living with my aunt and not have social support. I continued my education and grew in my career, all while being locked in my house for over a year.
    Studyist Education Equity Scholarship
    As high school students, college is the only thing advertised to us as a future goal. None of us are told that it is okay to go to a trade school, take a gap year, or not go to college at all. This leads to an extreme pressure on teenagers to decide what they want to pursue as a career and invest tens of thousands of dollars in a college or university before they are even technically adults. To add to that, colleges and universities make it exceedingly difficult for students to access their services. The inequity of access to education for students is something that should be fought against. Everyone has a right to be educated and therefore everyone should have equal opportunity to be educated. The inequity for students to access education violates basic human rights. Typically, education is easier for upper class students with a white background to access. Teens in lower class communities do not receive the same opportunities as those previously mentioned. People of color or of lower socio-economic backgrounds are less likely to get financial aid, be scouted by schools, and actually be accepted to colleges they apply to. Many also feel discouraged to apply to some schools because they feel rejection is inevitable. This way of being educated and outlook on life is unacceptable and needs to change. Everyone who wants to should be able to easily receive the education that they desire.
    Elevate Mental Health Awareness Scholarship
    In the United States, one in every five adults have experienced mental health issues. It is estimated that only half of those with mental illness receive treatment for that illness. The statistics get even more shocking when you look at the types of treatment. Less than 16 percent of people take medication to manage their symptoms and less than ten percent seek counseling or talk therapy (CDC). Many people in my life live, or have lived, with mental illness and it has greatly shaped the way I live my life. Luckily, I was raised in such a way that mental health never had a stigma surrounding it. I have always believed that everyone could benefit from a little therapy, and encouraged those around me to pursue it. Growing up with a sister and step mom who have anxiety and depression, biological parents with personality disorders, and a grandmother with psychosis has allowed me to have a diverse experience with mental health and gain a better understanding. I believe that mental health is something to be approached with the same amount of care as physical health. I hope to one day live in a world where mental disorders are treated with the same ferocity that physical illnesses are treated. Since so many people in my life have mental health problems, mental health has influenced my relationships quite a bit. Knowing that each of these people have a certain diagnosis alters the way that I approach them or interact with them. For example, I have to be delicate with my sister and remind myself that she can not help but worry about all of these things. On another hand, since my mother has borderline personality disorder traits, I need to take the things she says and her actions with a grain of salt. I also work in the mental health industry, and that experience has affected how I interact with others. I have learned a lot about coping skills, cognitive distortions, validation, and altered states of mind. I feel like I have a better understanding of what people are going through and like I can be more beneficial in their mental health journey because of it. The most important thing I have learned is that sometimes people are venting just to be heard and validated and that they are not looking for advice. This has also led to me learning skills that I can use to benefit my own mental health. Personally, I enjoy using the DBT skill TIPP to help in distressing times. As far as my career aspirations go, I have always been interested in psychology so pursuing a career in mental health was not at all surprising. I am currently working towards a bachelors degree in community psychology and want to eventually get a masters in counseling or social work and possibly a doctorate in a related field. My current position is at a behavioral health hospital as an outpatient program coordinator. As I continue in this position and grow, my career aspirations alter slightly. I began wanting to become a counselor and then eventually become a behavioral analyst. Now, I enjoy the management and program development side of my job equally as much as the therapy side of it; so I may want to explore options that lead to management in mental health agencies. My experience with mental health has impacted my life in many diverse and positive ways. Whether it is my personal relationships, outlook, or career, mental health is an important thing to me and I want to continue working with it. I hope to continue to impact others with mental health concerns in a constructive manner and let that outlook on life lead me in an efficacious direction.
    3Wishes Women’s Empowerment Scholarship
    The empowerment of women is something that we have been consistently trying to do for decades; from trying to gain the right to vote with women’s suffrage in the early 1900’s to women in Afghanistan protesting the Taliban right now. The demand for women to have basic rights is something that I would hope would never need to be a demand, but nevertheless, we live in a mostly patriarchal world and women need to advocate for themselves constantly. I think that a great way to start effectively empowering women would be to put more of them in positions of power. Elect more women into government positions, hire more female management in companies, and expand the amount of women in STEM majors. No one knows what a woman needs better than a woman, so why not put them in the front lines of those decisions being made? Actually getting women into these positions of power is easier said than done. While convincing people to elect women into power and hire them as managers, directors, and even CEO’s would be incredibly difficult, I think getting them into STEM would be much easier. A lot of females that I know opted not to study STEM due to it being a predominantly male subject, and that is daunting. Advertising those majors using women students or alumni and getting sufficient information out could allow more women to pursue a STEM major. This, for example, could empower women by helping them become doctors and create vaccines to help the whole world. Media is also a huge proponent of women feeling empowered. When women feel seen and heard on social media, or whatever they are putting out into the world, they feel empowered. Having more coverage of impressive women such as Jacinda Ardern, the prime minister of New Zealand, or Kamala Harris could show women that they can do all of the things that a man can do. The body positivity movement is a great step towards fully empowering women. The more diversity we see in body types, hair types, ethnicities, professions, etc. the more empowered more women will feel. In conclusion, the most basic way to make women feel empowered is to represent them and represent them well. Most concerns I hear about women feeling helpless surround them feeling like no one is listening. Like no one believes the struggle that they go through. In order to empower women effectively, women need to be given more power to be seen, heard, validated, and believed.
    #Back2SchoolBold Scholarship
    One of the things I love doing and thrive off of is planning. I use spreadsheets religiously and appreciate how they have the capability of laying everything out in a clear way. Before I started community college, I planned every class I would take using the school's degree audit system and my spreadsheet. I was thrilled when I realized that I would get to do that again once I transferred to the University of Washington-Bothell. Creating the attached spreadsheets was definitely my #Back2SchoolBold moment. I quickly learned that planning things at the university level was not as straightforward as predicted, but nonetheless, I made it through. The first barrier I was met with was that I couldn't plan every class out as I did previously. I attached a PDF of part of my degree audit and also the link for the whole spreadsheet. It includes how I worked around the issue and made the best out of a less-than-ideal situation. The second thing I realized was that I would need a lot more financial assistance (as shown in my tuition plan PDF). Applying to these Bold scholarships has helped me approach my back-to-school moments with confidence.
    Act Locally Scholarship
    One of the most prominent issues that I see in the world is the lack of mental health awareness. Mental health illnesses are treated as if they are less important than physical illness, despite causing just as much of a struggle to perform daily tasks. This lack of awareness leads to stigma, limited resources, and improper treatment. A person with depression struggles to get out of bed, perform basic hygiene, and do their basic daily tasks. Anxiety makes it extremely difficult for people to work, perform tasks, and go out in public. Other mood disorders, such as bipolar, also have adverse effects such as mania. Depending on the severity of these disorders and other factors, a person could also experience psychosis. People feel uncomfortable discussing mental health because it is something they are unfamiliar with. Those with mental illnesses are also viewed as lesser even though they have no choice in the matter. These stigmas regarding mental illness need to be abolished. Once people begin speaking more freely about mental health, perhaps the other above-mentioned problems. While some areas have plenty of mental health resources, others do not have nearly as many. I live in Washington, and there are inpatient hospitals, residential programs, outpatient programs, community mental health centers, and individual providers. In comparison, Oregon, where I grew up, only has a state hospital and a limited amount of individual providers. In order for people to feel more comfortable asking for mental health treatment, mental health treatment has to be in abundance and easily accessible. There are many issues with mental health treatment. It is expensive, there are usually long wait-lists, and it is not frequently advertised to list a few. In a perfect world, therapy could be less expensive and providers would accept more insurances. Advertisement and more facilities could eliminate the accessibility and wait-list issues. Any small contribution could help improve all of these concerns with mental disorders. I think the world is a long way away from fixing the problem, but I do not let that stop me. I try to make an impact in my community by raising awareness, studying psychology, and working in the mental health field. A few years ago, my cousin completed suicide and many of my close friends and family suffer from various mental health concerns. Due to this, my family participates in an annual walk to raise awareness for suicide and depression in general. The walk is called "Out of the Darkness" and is easy and free to participate in. I believe this is a good first step to bringing mental health awareness. I currently am halfway towards earning a bachelor's degree in community psychology. This is my first step in getting a master's and working as a therapist. Ultimately, I want to learn more about the behavioral aspect of mental health and learn prevention and better treatment techniques. Pursuing continued education will increase my understanding of mental health, and, in turn, help me provide better care. My third and most prevalent form of implementing this change in the community is by working in the mental health field. For the last two years, I have worked in a behavioral health hospital and have provided care to a variety of patients with different mental health concerns. I have worked in diverse departments within the inpatient hospital and outpatient programs and performed different jobs as a way to increase my experience and impact on the patients' lives. My current position is as program coordinator of the outpatient programs. In this role, I am able to make sure that our programs are running as smoothly as possible so that our patients receive the best care. If all of these changes occur, and I continue to make a difference, I strongly believe that the impact will be immense for the community. The people of the world will greatly benefit from better and more accessible mental health care. It is our responsibility to remove the stigma surrounding mental health and make people feel more comfortable reaching out and asking for help.
    Lillie Award
    Building a sense of community is something that we begin doing as children. We play outside and connect with the neighborhood kids. The neighborhood grows up together, goes to school together, and eventually, the community disperses as the kids pursue their wildest adult dreams. Even as a kid in the neighborhood community, I always tried to help others. I would watch the younger kids, act as a role model for them, and attempt to facilitate fun games or activities. As I have gotten older, I have kept the value of helping others in a community and making the community itself a better place. In high school, I would attempt to help the community by tutoring or offering a listening ear to those who needed it. I found a lot of pride in being able to make such a great impact in people's lives by doing something that seems so small. I tutored underclassmen in math for a while. I created worksheets and practice tests and would study with the students face to face in the library. I have also been told I am a great listener, so I would offer that to those who needed to vent or wanted advice. Nowadays, I aid the community by working in the mental health field. My hospital benefits the community in multiple ways and it is an honor to be able to work beside the providers and nurses. Firstly, the hospital participates in the Medicaid program. This means that we are able to provide care to those with Medicaid insurance or we can help those with low incomes apply for Medicaid. Secondly, we help our patients stabilize while they are under our care. We provide a medication regiment that works for them and we provide coping skills to help them continue their stabilization outside the hospital. This also means that we help them be better prepared for when they reenter the community. Thirdly, we either provide referrals for outpatient providers or get the patient appointments before they discharge. They also have the option to admit to a partial hospitalization program or intensive outpatient program post-discharge. This is where I currently work and directly benefit the community most. We do all of the above-mentioned things and increase the amount of stabilization and coping skills provided. Our programs are CBT and DBT based, so we provide a variety of coping skill styles for people to use. Our providers perfect the medications and our therapists are able to provide more therapy rather than just case management. Since I have worked in many different areas of the hospital, I have learned a plethora of skills that I believe will help me continue to benefit the community. As I continue to study psychology and eventually become a behavioral science major, I will continue to serve the community in any way I can. And I will start by working with our patients in PHP and IOP and helping them get the best quality of life that they possibly can.
    Susy Ruiz Superhero Scholarship
    I was not one of those students who became very close with their teachers and hung out in their classrooms between classes and after school. With that being said, two teachers made a big impact on my academic career and encouraged me to pursue higher education. The teacher I had for multiple social studies classes throughout high school, Mrs. Youngblood was the first one to make an impact. I had her for freshman social studies, U.S. history, and government. These subjects were always the hardest for me and, as a result, I lost interest in them rather quickly. Mrs. Youngblood has a very fiery personality and teaching style that helped make the classes more bearable. Her classroom felt like a safe and secure learning environment. I remember getting my first F on a test in U.S. history. When I came back to her the year after, for government, I brought up that test and how it really affected my confidence in her class. She quickly responded saying how I still passed her class with an A and did well on all other assignments. Later, when I asked her to write a letter of recommendation for me, she said "of course, not even a question". I was confident that she would provide a letter that would show my resilience. The second teacher to influence me to pursue higher education was Ms. Tierney, a writing and literature teacher. I took her mythology topics class junior year and college now writing senior year. To get into college now writing, the student has to pass a test before registration. I was extremely nervous to take this test but knew I needed to so I could get a headstart on my college classes. Ms. Tierney encouraged me to take the test and told me she was confident I would pass based on my performance in her mythology class the year prior. While in college now writing, Ms. Tierney helped prepare us for college classes and reassured us that we would excel in them. She frequently helped revise my papers and, in my opinion, gave a true and supportive pre-college college experience. I also asked her to write me a letter of recommendation because I believe that she saw growth in me that most teachers did not have the opportunity to see. The common theme between these two teachers is that they both had very approachable teaching styles and personalities and I had the pleasure of being in multiple classes of theirs throughout my high school career. Both of them encouraged me to pursue my wildest university dreams and helped support me on my way there. I appreciate the messages they would give me and truly believed them to be sincere since they were able to watch me grow and progress.
    Bold Technology Matters Scholarship
    The endlessly growing technology industry is always exciting and catches my eye. While the release of new phones and gaming consoles is something to look forward to, it is not my main interest. The technology that intrigues me is the use of robots for daily tasks. When I was little, my aunt would take me and my sister to a science museum in Seattle. My best friend there, and my favorite attraction, was a robot that would play tic-tac-toe with you. For some reason I thought that being able to play against something that was not human was incredible. In this mornings edition of The Brew, I read about a robot called Blendid that prepares food at the push of a button. I was immediately inspired by it and thought to write this essay. While making something like a smoothie is not that difficult, Blendid could add some ease to every day life. I believe that the impact it could have would be immense. A machine like Blendid could improve the daily lives of people in many different ways. If we take the example of smoothies, it could improve the users general health. Smoothies are a great source fruits, vegetables, vitamins, and other superfoods. Blendid takes away the need to portion out the food and prepare it yourself, which takes the hassle out of making food yourself. It is also quick and easy, which encourages people to actually eat breakfast. I think robots that can take over simple tasks, such as making our breakfasts, will have a huge positive impact on the world. There are so many little things that feel tedious to complete, which makes people not want to complete them. This leads to people becoming overwhelmed with all of the little things they have to do, so they do not do them, and then they get stressed about not doing the tasks, and it creates this vicious cycle. I think having robots and machines to complete these tasks for us could greatly improve people's quality of life and make it easier. I am excited to see how this technology evolves and is put into the world.
    Cat Zingano Overcoming Loss Scholarship
    My cousin Joey and I were extremely close when he was alive. He would always say that we were meant to be twins, not cousins because 'cousin' did not define the relationship we had. My favorite memories range from him and I playing Legend of Zelda as kids to adventuring through the woods behind our abuela's (grandma's) house as high schoolers. The last time I saw Joey before he passed, he was struggling hard with his depression but had just gotten his tongue pierced. We sat outside my uncle's house and Joey sang and played his ukulele. Joey completed suicide a few weeks after that and I was, and still am, completely heartbroken. His battle with depression made me more aware of the mental health of other around me. My sister and roommate also have depression and anxiety, and I want to be able to support them in the best way possible and help them fight. I also want to extend that past my loved ones, and help those in the community who are struggling. I implemented that by starting my career in the mental health field. I have worked at a behavioral health hospital for 2 years and with each position I have, I am able to help others in need. I help them fight their battle against depression and gain the necessary skills to live a fulfilling life. In turn, this job has also given me skills to protect my own mental health and be a better support for my loved ones. My greatest achievements are when my sister and roommate, or a patient, tells me that I helped them with something in their mental health journey. Whether that's just listening, validating, offering advice, or finding providers. It inspires me to continue to strive for greatness and help those in need so Joey can have a pleasant legacy through me.
    Mental Health Movement x Picmonic Scholarship
    Many people in my life have struggled with mental illness, whether it has been diagnosed or not. My therapist and I think I may have dysthymia, which is most easily defined as a very mild case of constant depression. My roommate and my sister have both anxiety and depression. My cousin also struggled with depression before he, unfortunately, completed suicide a few years ago. One of my core beliefs is that everyone could benefit from going to therapy at least once in their life. My mental health struggles weren't that severe compared to others around me, but I decided to try therapy out anyway because of that belief. That was one of the best decisions I have ever made in my life. My therapist helped me stop minimizing my symptoms, figure out why I wasn't feeling joy or excitement, and gave me the freedom to talk about my struggles. It was difficult at first to face the reality that I had a mental illness, but being given that safe space to process made it easier. Since beginning therapy, I have affirmed that I have and can utilize healthy coping skills and that I am capable of living without mental illness holding me back. Dealing with the mental illness of those around me who I love dearly is difficult as well, but I believe that I have the tools to be supportive. Since I work in mental health, I have the advantage of gaining experience with those with mental illness. This has allowed me to be able to validate and support loved ones in the best way possible. Specifically, coping with my cousin's depression and passing has inspired me to work in the mental health industry. I am currently the program coordinator of a behavioral health hospital's outpatient programs. This allows me to help stabilize people with a variety of mental illnesses, allow them to process and heal, and then assist them in finding more permanent individual care.
    Darryl Davis "Follow Your Heart" Scholarship
    When people are asked to describe me, the most common words and phrases used are: independent, hard working, and not what I expected. At first glance, a lot of people see me as a small woman of color who is fairly ordinary. Once people get to know me, they realize this is not the case. I try to live in the moment and experience life to the fullest. This usually leads to me going on road trips while singing Disney songs or the Hamilton soundtrack. I value having new experiences and trying things at least once. This has enabled me to learn that I have a passion for reading, video games, and hiking. I don't like the idea of having a plan that is set in stone for my life; I like having the ability for it to adapt and change as I learn and grow as a person. The main academic goals I have are to complete my bachelors, get a masters in counseling, and eventually obtain a PhD or PsyD. Career wise I hope to become a behavioral analyst and learn more about people and why they act how they do. My personal goals are to start a family and have a nice house, preferably on a lake, with a library. For me, the most exciting thing about this world is how big and diverse it is. I love that there are so many cultures to experience and learn about as you travel. There always seems to be something new for people to experience around every corner. I also appreciate how accessible these things are for others. I love to get new experiences and enrich my life with the experiences and lifestyles of others. Part of my career goals include serving my community. I currently work in a behavioral health hospital that serves clients with psychiatric issues and we work to stabilize them so they have a better quality of life. In my current position, we specialize in creating a safe and therapeutic space for those with anxiety and depression. I hope to continue on this career path and continue helping those in need.
    Nervo "Revolution" Scholarship
    Describing myself as artistic is one of the hardest things I have tried to do. I enjoy art; I enjoy looking at it, I enjoy creating it, I enjoy being a part of it. The biggest set back I have is that I do not have enough time to pursue the artistic creations that I want. Ultimately, my current biggest artistic ambition is to create art using as many mediums as possible. The most prominent artistic thing I do is sing. I sing everyday, almost all the time, and I enjoy a variety of styles of music. With the creative arts, I tend to be more comfortable with drawing. Recently I started experimenting with paints. I created a piece using acrylic paints and a canvas. My goal is to become more comfortable with paints, experiment with watercolor, and define what my style of art is. In regards to the physical arts, I would love to attend a dance class or two and become comfortable moving in my own body. Salsa dancing is a large part of my culture, and learning how would make me feel more connected to that culture. This scholarship would help me achieve these goals in multiple ways. Firstly, having the extra finances will allow me to work less and spend more time creating art or learning how to create art. Secondly, writing this application has improved my understanding of what artistic goals I have. My ambitions were labeled in my mind as 'just do it more', and now I have a clearer goal of what I would like to do. Lastly, if I was awarded this scholarship, it would give me the confidence boost and mental push to actually go out there and achieve the artistic ambitions I have now and whatever ambitions arise in the future.
    "Wise Words" Scholarship
    I have a lot of dreams that I want to achieve, but there are a lot of factors that lead me to believe I can not achieve them. An example from my childhood is that I can't be a model because I am too short. A more current goal I have is to get graduate degrees and become a behavioral analyst. The thought of paying for these degrees, getting the necessary experience, and getting on the correct path has been overwhelming and made me discouraged. That's why when my aunt told me "The only person holding you back is you. You can do whatever you want... You define your success", I regained my drive to work towards these goals. This quote is special to me because it has a personal touch to it. There are plenty of inspirational quotes that you can google, but none have the same impact. The fact that my aunt said this makes it more believable. She is helping me through my entire college journey, so I can trust that she actually means these words. My aunt telling me that I can do whatever I set my mind to gave me the push I needed to create a plan and work towards my goals. I started a 529 account to save money for college, and have a tuition payment plan so I can continue to save money and have that account grow. I am researching degrees and the necessary experience I need to reach my ultimate goal of studying behavioral analysis. I feel truly inspired. This quote reaffirmed that I can achieve my dreams, reach my goals, and do whatever I set my mind to.
    Bervell Health Equity Scholarship
    Being Latina, but living in a dominantly white household has given me a different type of insight to how different communities are served. Since my mom is white, and I lived with her, it never occurred to me that my Puerto Rican relatives could experience healthcare differently. Growing up, whether or not I got to see a doctor, a dentist, or an optometrist regularly wasn’t a question. I just saw them. Then, as I got older and my mom made less money, I went years without going to a dentist or optometrist and only saw doctors when necessary. Luckily, my mom worked in the healthcare field, so she has some personal knowledge and friends who could help diagnose anything wrong with me. Skip forward to more recently, and I now work in the mental health field. Specifically, I work in a behavioral health hospital that cares for a variety of patients. A small portion are voluntary and have private insurance, but the majority are detained and don’t have insurance or have some version of Medicaid. This population is resistant to care because they haven’t had a positive experience with healthcare in the past due to their economic status. These people are homeless, jobless, and can’t get the help they need because of these things. I have worked with them in three different positions in an attempt to improve the care they receive. As a mental health technician, I tried to make the duration of their stay with us bearable by listening, playing music, and participating in fun activities with them. When I moved onto discharge planning, my goal was to provide the patients with follow up care that would serve them best. As previously mentioned, a lot of these people are homeless but need therapy and medication management. To try and make an easy transition back into society, I discharge to a homeless shelter and schedule appointments within walking distance of that shelter at a clinic that either does sliding scale or accepts Medicaid. Now, I work in a telehealth partial hospitalization program where I can aid in serving mentally ill people all over the state of Washington. I believe that my personal experience of not always having access to healthcare and being able to work with communities that are underserved in diverse positions, has aided me in being able to continue to serve them in the future. The early start in my career has just given me room to grow and provide better care as the years go on.