For DonorsFor Applicants
user profile avatar

Robert Gervasi

2695

Bold Points

2x

Nominee

2x

Finalist

Bio

In life, my goal is to live unapologetically true to myself while navigating my way through this uncertain world as a future licensed therapist, forever mental health advocate, a proud member of the LGBTQIA+ community, twin brother, avid runner, bunny dad, Broadway-enthusiast, and home baker!đź’™ I have a passion for working with clients of the Queer community and those battling mental health conditions such as eating disorders and social anxiety.

Education

Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine

Master's degree program
2022 - 2024
  • Majors:
    • Clinical, Counseling and Applied Psychology

Arcadia University

Bachelor's degree program
2017 - 2021
  • Majors:
    • Psychology, General
  • Minors:
    • Drama/Theatre Arts and Stagecraft

Miscellaneous

  • Desired degree level:

    Master's degree program

  • Graduate schools of interest:

  • Transfer schools of interest:

  • Majors of interest:

    • Psychology, General
    • Psychology, Other
    • Clinical, Counseling and Applied Psychology
  • Planning to go to medical school
  • Career

    • Dream career field:

      Mental Health Care

    • Dream career goals:

      Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC)

    • Master's Level Intern

      PeaceTree Counseling & Consulting
      2023 – Present1 year
    • Billing Coordinator

      PeaceTree Counseling & Consulting
      2023 – Present1 year
    • Board Member and Volunteer

      CTC Wellness Foundation: Don't Stall, Just Call!
      2019 – Present5 years
    • Patient Relations Administrator

      PeaceTree Counseling & Consulting
      2021 – 20232 years
    • Waiter and Food Expeditor

      Trattoria Totaro
      2017 – 20203 years
    • Cake Decorator and Baker

      Pretty Tasty Cupcakes
      2020 – 20211 year
    • Assistant Musical Director

      Music Training Center
      2015 – 20172 years
    • Professor's Assistant for Psychology of Music

      Arcadia University
      2019 – 20201 year
    • Animal Care Specialist

      Arcadia University
      2019 – 20212 years

    Sports

    Karate

    2004 – 20128 years

    Awards

    • 2nd Degree Black Belt in Tae Kwon Do

    Volleyball

    Intramural
    2016 – 20171 year

    Track & Field

    Varsity
    2015 – 20161 year

    Awards

    • Finalist

    Soccer

    Club
    2013 – 20174 years

    Soccer

    Varsity
    2013 – 20163 years

    Awards

    • State Quarter Finalists, 2015

    Research

    • Animal Sciences

      Arcadia University — Rat Lab Manager & Animal Care Coordinator
      2019 – 2021
    • Research and Experimental Psychology

      Arcadia University — Lead Researcher & Thesis Writer
      2020 – 2021

    Arts

    • MacGuffin Theatre & Film Company

      Theatre
      Legally Blonde: The Musical, Chicago, Pippin, Love's Labour's Lost, Singin' Bohemians Cabaret Troupe, A Christmas Carol
      2013 – 2017
    • Arcadia University

      Theatre
      The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee
      2019 – 2020
    • The Mount St. Joseph Academy

      Theatre
      West Side Story, Nice Work If You Can Get It, Footloose
      2015 – 2017
    • Colonial Players at Plymouth Whitemarsh High School

      Theatre
      In The Heights, Tarzan, Aida, RENT
      2014 – 2017

    Public services

    • Advocacy

      CTC Wellness Foundationq — Mental health liaison and volunteer
      2019 – Present
    • Volunteering

      CTC Wellness Foundation: Don't Stall, Just Call — Assistant to Executive Director / Board Member
      2019 – Present

    Future Interests

    Advocacy

    Volunteering

    Philanthropy

    Entrepreneurship

    Mental Health Importance Scholarship
    Before 2014, mental health was an unspoken topic in my life. It wasn’t necessarily taboo to talk about it, but, before that year, I personally never thought about the importance of mental health until my own was in jeopardy. Being diagnosed with anorexia nervosa as a young teenage male was the launch of my journey to recovery and ultimately, my career in mental health. The experiences I had while in the deep and abysmal depths of my eating disorder has shaped my future career path and my mindset as a human being. I was driven to the route of clinical mental health counseling because of the clear necessity for it in our society. Like any mental illness, it does not just spontaneously pop up out of nowhere without reason. Feelings and inner anxieties should’ve been talked about normally in my household before it was forced to be. Since my diagnosis, I still go to therapy regularly because working on my mental health is a constant journey. Because of my own experiences with mental health before and after my diagnoses, I know the feeling shame, confusion, and disbelief surrounding the process for getting the help you deserve for bettering your mental health. Being resilient in my own recovery from what was and still is deemed a “female problem,” I have the first-hand experience and true empathy needed to work against the stigmas of mental health. I believe that those who have gone through the indescribable feats of mental illnesses are the ones who have the ability to truly empathize and connect with clients on a whole other level. I experienced the mental strain of trying to pay attention in class while being haunted by the daunting secret of being gay. I felt the anger towards my clinicians, and I endured the deafening silence of the social isolation from friends and family. I felt the drain of my mental capacity to function as someone I wasn't and who I thought I was supposed to be for almost 20 years. Suffering in silence with an eating disorder and as a closeted gay man for too long, I needed someone to understand me, reassure me that there is life beyond the mental anguish, and help me to feel safe and empowered as my true self. Through my experiences in collaboration with an earned degree, I will work to help clients of all gender identities, races, sexualities, and religions through the barriers of mental illness and find life beyond their current state. I will not only support and advocate for my clients, but I will sit with them in solidarity to show them they are and will never be alone in the fight for mental well-being. I will be who I needed as a teenager and budding young adult. My career as a licensed therapist in the state of Pennsylvania would not be just my career goal, but my calling to be the qualified professional I need to be to make a difference with whomever I have the honor of working with.
    So You Want to Be a Mental Health Professional Scholarship
    Before 2014, mental health was an unspoken topic in my life. It wasn’t necessarily taboo to talk about it, but, before that year, I personally never thought about the importance of mental health until my own was in jeopardy. Being diagnosed with anorexia nervosa as a young teenage male was the launch of my journey to recovery and ultimately, my career in mental health. The experiences I had while in the deep and abysmal depths of my eating disorder has shaped my future career path and my mindset as a human being. I was driven to the route of clinical mental health counseling because of the clear necessity for it in our society. Like any mental illness, it does not just spontaneously pop up out of nowhere without reason. Feelings and inner anxieties should’ve been talked about normally in my household before it was forced to be. Since 2014, I still go to therapy regularly because working on my mental health is a constant journey. Because of my own experiences with mental health before and after my diagnoses, I know the feeling shame, confusion, and disbelief surrounding the process for getting the help you deserve for bettering your mental health. Being resilient in my own recovery from what was and still is deemed a “female problem,” I have the first-hand experience and true empathy needed to work against the stigmas of mental health. I believe that those who have gone through the indescribable feats of mental illnesses are the ones who have the ability to truly empathize and connect with clients on a whole other level. I experienced the mental strain of trying to pay attention in class while being haunted by the daunting secret of being gay. I felt the anger towards my clinicians, and I endured the deafening silence of the social isolation from friends and family. I felt the drain of my mental capacity to function as someone I wasn't and who I thought I was supposed to be for almost 20 years. Suffering in silence with an eating disorder and as a closeted gay man for too long, I needed someone to understand me, reassure me that there is life beyond the mental anguish, and help me to feel safe and empowered as my true self. Through my experiences in collaboration with an earned degree, I will work to help clients of all gender identities, races, sexualities, and religions through the barriers of mental illness and find life beyond their current state. I will not only support and advocate for my clients, but I will sit with them in solidarity to show them they are and will never be alone in the fight for mental well-being. I will be who I needed as a teenager and budding young adult. My career as a licensed therapist in the state of Pennsylvania would not be just my career goal, but my calling to be the qualified professional I need to be to make a difference with whomever I have the honor of working with.
    Mental Health Empowerment Scholarship
    Before 2014, mental health was an unspoken topic in my life. It wasn’t necessarily taboo to talk about it, but before that year, I personally never thought about the importance of mental health until my own was in jeopardy. Being diagnosed with anorexia nervosa as a young teenage male was the launch of my journey to recovery and ultimately, my career in mental health. The experiences I had while in the deep and abysmal depths of my eating disorder have shaped my future career path and my mindset as a human being. I was driven to the route of clinical mental health counseling because of the clear necessity for it in our society. Like any mental illness, it does not just spontaneously pop up out of nowhere without reason. Feelings and inner anxieties should’ve been talked about normally in my household before it was forced to be. Since 2014, I still go to therapy regularly because working on my mental health is a constant journey. Because of my own experiences with mental health before and after my diagnoses, I know the feeling shame, confusion, and disbelief surrounding the process for getting the help you deserve for bettering your mental health. Being resilient in my own recovery from what was and still is deemed a “female problem,” I have the first-hand experience and true empathy needed to work against the stigmas of mental health. I believe that those who have gone through the indescribable feats of mental illnesses are the ones who have the ability to truly empathize and connect with clients on a whole other level. I experienced the mental strain of trying to pay attention in class while being haunted by the daunting secret of being gay. I felt the anger towards my clinicians, and I endured the deafening silence of the social isolation from friends and family. I felt the drain of my mental capacity to function as someone I wasn't and who I thought I was supposed to be for almost 20 years. Suffering in silence with an eating disorder and as a closeted gay man for too long, I needed someone to understand me, reassure me that there is life beyond the mental anguish, and help me to feel safe and empowered as my true self. Through my experiences in collaboration with an earned degree, I will work to help clients of all gender identities, races, sexualities, and religions through the barriers of mental illness and find life beyond their current state. I will not only support and advocate for my clients, but I will sit with them in solidarity to show them they are and will never be alone in the fight for mental well-being. I will be who I needed as a teenager and budding young adult. My career as a licensed therapist in the state of Pennsylvania would not be just my career goal, but my calling to be the qualified professional I need to be to make a difference with whomever I have the honor of working with.
    Ethan To Scholarship
    Before 2014, mental health was an unspoken topic in my life. It wasn’t necessarily taboo to talk about it, but, before that year, I personally never thought about the importance of mental health until my own was in jeopardy. Being diagnosed with anorexia nervosa as a young teenage male was the launch of my journey to recovery and ultimately, my career in mental health. The experiences I had while in the deep and abysmal depths of my eating disorder has shaped my future career path and my mindset as a human being. I was driven to the route of clinical mental health counseling because of the clear necessity for it in our society. Like any mental illness, it does not just spontaneously pop up out of nowhere without reason. Feelings and inner anxieties should’ve been talked about normally in my household before it was forced to be. Since 2014, I still go to therapy regularly because working on my mental health is a constant journey. Because of my own experiences with mental health before and after my diagnoses, I know the feeling shame, confusion, and disbelief surrounding the process for getting the help you deserve for bettering your mental health. Being resilient in my own recovery from what was and still is deemed a “female problem,” I have the first-hand experience and true empathy needed to work against the stigmas of mental health. I believe that those who have gone through the indescribable feats of mental illnesses are the ones who have the ability to truly empathize and connect with clients on a whole other level. I experienced the mental strain of trying to pay attention in class while being haunted by the daunting secret of being gay. I felt the anger towards my clinicians, and I endured the deafening silence of the social isolation from friends and family. I felt the drain of my mental capacity to function as someone I wasn't and who I thought I was supposed to be for almost 20 years. Suffering in silence with an eating disorder and as a closeted gay man for too long, I needed someone to understand me, reassure me that there is life beyond the mental anguish, and help me to feel safe and empowered as my true self. I have taken these experiences and lessons already into my internship as a therapist intern seeing my own clients and assuming this clinical role. Through my experiences in collaboration with an earned degree and the hopeful assistance of this gracious scholarship, I will work to help clients of all gender identities, races, sexualities, and religions through the barriers of mental illness and find life beyond their current state. I will not only support and advocate for my clients, but I will sit with them in solidarity to show them they are and will never be alone in the fight for mental well-being. I will be who I needed as a teenager and budding young adult. My career as a licensed therapist in the state of Pennsylvania would not be just my career goal, but my calling to be the qualified professional I need to be to make a difference with whomever I have the honor of working with.
    Christina Taylese Singh Memorial Scholarship
    Before 2014, mental health was an unspoken topic in my life. It wasn’t necessarily taboo to talk about it, but, before that year, I personally never thought about the importance of mental health until my own was in jeopardy. Being diagnosed with anorexia nervosa as a young teenage male was the launch of my journey to recovery and ultimately, my career in mental health. The experiences I had while in the deep and abysmal depths of my eating disorder has shaped my future career path and my mindset as a human being. I was driven to the route of clinical mental health counseling because of the clear necessity for it in our society. Like any mental illness, it does not just spontaneously pop up out of nowhere without reason. Feelings and inner anxieties should’ve been talked about normally in my household before it was forced to be. Since 2014, I still go to therapy regularly because working on my mental health is a constant journey. Because of my own experiences with mental health before and after my diagnoses, I know the feeling shame, confusion, and disbelief surrounding the process for getting the help you deserve for bettering your mental health. Being resilient in my own recovery from what was and still is deemed a “female problem,” I have the first-hand experience and true empathy needed to work against the stigmas of mental health. I believe that those who have gone through the indescribable feats of mental illnesses are the ones who have the ability to truly empathize and connect with clients on a whole other level. I experienced the mental strain of trying to pay attention in class while being haunted by the daunting secret of being gay. I felt the anger towards my clinicians, and I endured the deafening silence of the social isolation from friends and family. I felt the drain of my mental capacity to function as someone I wasn't and who I thought I was supposed to be for almost 20 years. Suffering in silence with an eating disorder and as a closeted gay man for too long, I needed someone to understand me, reassure me that there is life beyond the mental anguish, and help me to feel safe and empowered as my true self. Through my experiences in collaboration with an earned degree and the hopeful assistance of this gracious scholarship, I will work to help clients of all gender identities, races, sexualities, and religions through the barriers of mental illness and find life beyond their current state. I will not only support and advocate for my clients, but I will sit with them in solidarity to show them they are and will never be alone in the fight for mental well-being. I will be who I needed as a teenager and budding young adult. My career as a licensed therapist in the state of Pennsylvania would not be just my career goal, but my calling to be the qualified professional I need to be to make a difference with whomever I have the honor of working with.
    Catrina Celestine Aquilino Memorial Scholarship
    Before 2014, mental health was an unspoken topic in my life. It wasn’t necessarily taboo to talk about it, but, before that year, I personally never thought about the importance of mental health until my own was in jeopardy. Being diagnosed with anorexia nervosa as a young teenage male was the launch of my journey to recovery and ultimately, my career in mental health. The experiences I had while in the deep and abysmal depths of my eating disorder has shaped my future career path and my mindset as a human being. I was driven to the route of clinical mental health counseling and therapy because of the clear necessity for it in our society. Like any mental illness, it does not just spontaneously pop up out of nowhere without reason. Feelings and inner anxieties should’ve been talked about normally in my household before it was forced to be. Since 2014, I still go to therapy regularly because working on my mental health is a constant journey. Because of my own experiences with mental health before and after my diagnoses, I know the feeling shame, confusion, and disbelief surrounding the process for getting the help you deserve for bettering your mental health. Being resilient in my own recovery from what was and still is deemed a “female problem,” I have the first-hand experience and true empathy needed to work against the stigmas of mental health. I believe that those who have gone through the indescribable feats of mental illnesses are the ones who have the ability to truly empathize and connect with clients on a whole other level. I experienced the mental strain of trying to pay attention in class while being haunted by the daunting secret of being gay. I felt the anger towards my clinicians, and I endured the deafening silence of the social isolation from friends and family. I felt the drain of my mental capacity to function as someone I wasn't and who I thought I was supposed to be for almost 20 years. I know the medical consequences mental illness has on the body. Suffering in silence with an eating disorder and as a closeted gay man for too long, I needed someone to understand me, reassure me that there is life beyond the mental anguish, and help me to feel safe and empowered as my true self. Through my experiences in collaboration with an earned degree and the hopeful assistance of this gracious scholarship, I will work to help clients of all gender identities, races, sexualities, and religions through the barriers of mental illness and find life beyond their current state. I will not only support and advocate for my clients, but I will sit with them in solidarity to show them they are and will never be alone in the fight for mental well-being. I will be who I needed as a teenager and budding young adult. As the world navigates our next step post-pandemic and in the midst of a political war, I will work to always create a warm and welcoming space for all my clients to be able to feel like their worries are valid. By having this accepting environment, the overall well-being of every client I see will undoubtedly improve in every way. My career as a licensed therapist in the state of Pennsylvania would not be just my career goal, but my calling to be the qualified professional I need to be to make a difference with whomever I have the honor of working with.
    Morgan Levine Dolan Community Service Scholarship
    Before 2014, mental health was an unspoken topic in my life. It wasn’t necessarily taboo to talk about it, but, before that year, I personally never thought about the importance of mental health until my own was in jeopardy. Being diagnosed with anorexia nervosa as a young teenage male was the launch of my journey to recovery and ultimately, my career in mental health. The experiences I had while in the deep and abysmal depths of my eating disorder has shaped my future career path and my mindset as a human being. I was driven to the route of clinical mental health counseling because of the clear necessity for it in our society. Like any mental illness, it does not just spontaneously pop up out of nowhere without reason. Feelings and inner anxieties should’ve been talked about normally in my household before it was forced to be. Since 2014, I still go to therapy regularly because working on my mental health is a constant journey. Because of my own experiences with mental health before and after my diagnoses, I know the feeling shame, confusion, and disbelief surrounding the process for getting the help you deserve for bettering your mental health. Being resilient in my own recovery from what was and still is deemed a “female problem,” I have the first-hand experience and true empathy needed to work against the stigmas of mental health. I believe that those who have gone through the indescribable feats of mental illnesses are the ones who have the ability to truly empathize and connect with clients on a whole other level. I experienced the mental strain of trying to pay attention in class while being haunted by the daunting secret of being gay. I felt the anger towards my clinicians, and I endured the deafening silence of the social isolation from friends and family. I felt the drain of my mental capacity to function as someone I wasn't and who I thought I was supposed to be for almost 20 years. Suffering in silence with an eating disorder and as a closeted gay man for too long, I needed someone to understand me, reassure me that there is life beyond the mental anguish, and help me to feel safe and empowered as my true self. Through my experiences in collaboration with an earned degree and the hopeful assistance of this gracious scholarship, I will work to help clients of all gender identities, races, sexualities, and religions through the barriers of mental illness and find life beyond their current state. I will not only support and advocate for my clients, but I will sit with them in solidarity to show them they are and will never be alone in the fight for mental well-being. I will be who I needed as a teenager and budding young adult. My career as a licensed therapist in the state of Pennsylvania would not be just my career goal, but my calling to be the qualified professional I need to be to make a difference with whomever I have the honor of working with.
    Walters Family Oak Grove High School Scholarship
    Before 2014, mental health was an unspoken topic in my life. It wasn’t necessarily taboo to talk about it, but, before that year, I personally never thought about the importance of mental health until my own was in jeopardy. Being diagnosed with anorexia nervosa as a young teenage male was the launch of my journey to recovery and ultimately, my career in mental health. The experiences I had while in the deep and abysmal depths of my eating disorder has shaped my future career path and my mindset as a human being. I was driven to the route of clinical mental health counseling because of the clear necessity for it in our society. Like any mental illness, it does not just spontaneously pop up out of nowhere without reason. Feelings and inner anxieties should’ve been talked about normally in my household before it was forced to be. Since 2014, I still go to therapy regularly because working on my mental health is a constant journey. Because of my own experiences with mental health before and after my diagnoses, I know the feeling of shame, confusion, and disbelief surrounding the process for getting the help you deserve for bettering your mental health. Being resilient in my own recovery from what was and still is deemed a “female problem,” I have the first-hand experience and true empathy needed to work against the stigmas of mental health. I believe that those who have gone through the indescribable feats of mental illnesses are the ones who have the ability to truly empathize and connect with clients on a whole other level. I experienced the mental strain of trying to pay attention in class while being haunted by the daunting secret of being gay. I felt the anger towards my clinicians, and I endured the deafening silence of the social isolation from friends and family. I felt the drain of my mental capacity to function as someone I wasn't and who I thought I was supposed to be for almost 20 years. Suffering in silence with an eating disorder and as a closeted gay man for too long, I needed someone to understand me, reassure me that there is life beyond the mental anguish, and help me to feel safe and empowered as my true self. Through my experiences in collaboration with an earned degree, I will work to help clients of all gender identities, races, sexualities, and religions through the barriers of mental illness and find life beyond their current state. I will not only support and advocate for my clients, but I will sit with them in solidarity to show them they are and will never be alone in the fight for mental well-being. I will be who I needed as a teenager and budding young adult. My career as a licensed therapist in the state of Pennsylvania would not be just my career goal, but my calling to be the qualified professional I need to be to make a difference with whomever I have the honor of working with.
    Lost Dreams Awaken Scholarship
    Being resilient in my own eating disorder recovery from what was and still is deemed a “female problem,” I have the experience and true empathy needed to work against the stigmas of mental health. I believe that those who have gone through the indescribable feats of mental illnesses are the ones who have the ability to truly empathize with clients on a different level. I experienced the mental strain of trying to go to school while being haunted by unspeakable thoughts. I endured the deafening silence of the social isolation. I felt the drain of my mental capacity to be someone I thought I was supposed to be. Suffering in silence for too long, I needed someone to understand me, reassure me that there is life beyond this, and help me to feel safe and empowered as my true self. I will work to help clients of all gender identities, races, sexualities, and religions through the barriers of mental illness and find life beyond their current state. I will not only support and advocate for my clients, but I will sit with them in solidarity to show them they are and will never be alone in the fight for recovery. My career as a licensed therapist in the state of Pennsylvania would not be just my career goal, but my calling to be the qualified professional I need to be to make a difference with whomever I have the honor of working with. Without recovery, this would not be possible.
    VonDerek Casteel Being There Counts Scholarship
    Before 2014, mental health was an unspoken topic in my life. It wasn’t necessarily taboo to talk about it, but, before that year, I personally never thought about the importance of mental health until my own was in jeopardy. Being diagnosed with anorexia nervosa as a young teenage male was the launch of my journey to recovery and ultimately, my career in mental health. The experiences I had while in the deep and abysmal depths of my eating disorder has shaped my future career path and my mindset as a human being. I was driven to the route of clinical mental health counseling because of the clear necessity for it in our society. Like any mental illness, it does not just spontaneously pop up out of nowhere without reason. Feelings and inner anxieties should’ve been talked about normally in my household before it was forced to be. Since 2014, I still go to therapy regularly because working on my mental health is a constant journey. Because of my own experiences with mental health before and after my diagnoses, I know the feeling of shame, confusion, and disbelief surrounding the process for getting the help you deserve for bettering your mental health. Being resilient in my own recovery from what was and still is deemed a “female problem,” I have the first-hand experience and true empathy needed to work against the stigmas of mental health. I believe that those who have gone through the indescribable feats of mental illnesses are the ones who have the ability to truly empathize and connect with clients on a whole other level. I experienced the mental strain of trying to pay attention in class while being haunted by the daunting secret of being gay. I felt the anger towards my clinicians, and I endured the deafening silence of the social isolation from friends and family. I felt the drain of my mental capacity to function as someone I wasn't and who I thought I was supposed to be for almost 20 years. Suffering in silence with an eating disorder and as a closeted gay man for too long, I needed someone to understand me, reassure me that there is life beyond the mental anguish, and help me to feel safe and empowered as my true self. Through my experiences in collaboration with an earned degree, I will work to help clients of all gender identities, races, sexualities, and religions through the barriers of mental illness and find life beyond their current state. I will not only support and advocate for my clients, but I will sit with them in solidarity to show them they are and will never be alone in the fight for mental well-being. I will be who I needed as a teenager and budding young adult. My career as a licensed therapist in the state of Pennsylvania would not be just my career goal, but my calling to be the qualified professional I need to be to make a difference with whomever I have the honor of working with.
    Jillian Ellis Pathway Scholarship
    Before 2014, mental health was an unspoken topic in my life. It wasn’t necessarily taboo to talk about it, but, before that year, I personally never thought about the importance of mental health until my own was in jeopardy. Being diagnosed with anorexia nervosa as a young teenage male was the launch of my journey to recovery and ultimately, my career in mental health. I was driven to the route of clinical mental health counseling because of the clear necessity for it in our society. Like any mental illness, it does not just spontaneously pop up out of nowhere without reason. Feelings and inner anxieties should’ve been talked about normally in my household before it was forced to be. I was struggling with raging homophobia toward myself that was instilled into me through years of Catholic school and our heteronormative society. Being resilient in my own recovery from what was and still is deemed a “female problem,” I have the first-hand experience and true empathy needed to work against the stigmas of mental health. I believe that those who have gone through the indescribable feats of mental illnesses are the ones who have the ability to truly empathize and connect with clients on a whole other level. I experienced the mental strain of trying to pay attention in class while being haunted by the daunting secret of being gay. I felt the anger towards my clinicians, and I endured the deafening silence of the social isolation from friends and family. I felt the drain of my mental capacity to function as someone I wasn't and who I thought I was supposed to be for almost 20 years. Suffering in silence with an eating disorder and as a closeted gay man for too long, I needed someone to understand me, reassure me that there is life beyond the mental anguish, and help me to feel safe and empowered as my true self. Through my experiences in collaboration with an earned degree, I will work to help clients of all gender identities, races, sexualities, and religions through the barriers of mental illness and find life beyond their current state. I will not only support and advocate for my clients, but I will sit with them in solidarity to show them they are and will never be alone in the fight for mental well-being. I will be who I needed as a teenager and budding young adult. My career as a licensed therapist in the state of Pennsylvania would not be just my career goal, but my calling to be the qualified professional I need to be to make a difference with whomever I have the honor of working with.
    Fishers of Men-tal Health Scholarship
    Before 2014, mental health was an unspoken topic in my life. It wasn’t necessarily taboo to talk about it, but, before that year, I personally never thought about the importance of mental health until my own was in jeopardy. Being diagnosed with anorexia nervosa as a young teenage male was the launch of my journey to recovery and ultimately, my career in mental health. The experiences I had while in the deep and abysmal depths of my eating disorder has shaped my future career path and my mindset as a human being. I was driven to the route of clinical mental health counseling because of the clear necessity for it in our society. Like any mental illness, it does not just spontaneously pop up out of nowhere without reason. Feelings and inner anxieties should’ve been talked about normally in my household before it was forced to be. Since 2014, I still go to therapy regularly because working on my mental health is a constant journey. Because of my own experiences with mental health before and after my diagnoses, I know the feeling shame, confusion, and disbelief surrounding the process for getting the help you deserve for bettering your mental health. Being resilient in my own recovery from what was and still is deemed a “female problem,” I have the first-hand experience and true empathy needed to work against the stigmas of mental health. I believe that those who have gone through the indescribable feats of mental illnesses are the ones who have the ability to truly empathize and connect with clients on a whole other level. I experienced the mental strain of trying to pay attention in class while being haunted by the daunting secret of being gay. I felt the anger towards my clinicians, and I endured the deafening silence of the social isolation from friends and family. I felt the drain of my mental capacity to function as someone I wasn't and who I thought I was supposed to be for almost 20 years. Suffering in silence with an eating disorder and as a closeted gay man for too long, I needed someone to understand me, reassure me that there is life beyond the mental anguish, and help me to feel safe and empowered as my true self. Through my experiences in collaboration with an earned degree, I will work to help clients of all gender identities, races, sexualities, and religions through the barriers of mental illness and find life beyond their current state. I will not only support and advocate for my clients, but I will sit with them in solidarity to show them they are and will never be alone in the fight for mental well-being. I will be who I needed as a teenager and budding young adult. My career as a licensed therapist in the state of Pennsylvania would not be just my career goal, but my calling to be the qualified professional I need to be to make a difference with whomever I have the honor of working with.
    Ethel Hayes Destigmatization of Mental Health Scholarship
    Before 2014, mental health was an unspoken topic in my life. It wasn’t necessarily taboo to talk about it, but, before that year, I personally never thought about the importance of mental health until my own was in jeopardy. Being diagnosed with anorexia nervosa as a young teenage male was the launch of my journey to recovery and ultimately, my career in mental health. The experiences I had while in the deep and abysmal depths of my eating disorder has shaped my future career path and my mindset as a human being. I was driven to the route of clinical mental health counseling because of the clear necessity for it in our society. Like any mental illness, it does not just spontaneously pop up out of nowhere without reason. Feelings and inner anxieties should’ve been talked about normally in my household before it was forced to be. Since 2014, I still go to therapy regularly because working on my mental health is a constant journey. Because of my own experiences with mental health before and after my diagnoses, I know the feeling shame, confusion, and disbelief surrounding the process for getting the help you deserve for bettering your mental health. Being resilient in my own recovery from what was and still is deemed a “female problem,” I have the first-hand experience and true empathy needed to work against the stigmas of mental health. I believe that those who have gone through the indescribable feats of mental illnesses are the ones who have the ability to truly empathize and connect with clients on a whole other level. I experienced the mental strain of trying to pay attention in class while being haunted by the daunting secret of being gay. I felt the anger towards my clinicians, and I endured the deafening silence of the social isolation from friends and family. I felt the drain of my mental capacity to function as someone I wasn't and who I thought I was supposed to be for almost 20 years. Suffering in silence with an eating disorder and as a closeted gay man for too long, I needed someone to understand me, reassure me that there is life beyond the mental anguish, and help me to feel safe and empowered as my true self. Through my experiences in collaboration with an earned degree, I will work to help clients of all gender identities, races, sexualities, and religions through the barriers of mental illness and find life beyond their current state. I will not only support and advocate for my clients, but I will sit with them in solidarity to show them they are and will never be alone in the fight for mental well-being. I will be who I needed as a teenager and budding young adult. My career as a licensed therapist in the state of Pennsylvania would not be just my career goal, but my calling to be the qualified professional I need to be to make a difference with whomever I have the honor of working with.
    Meaningful Existence Scholarship
    Before 2014, mental health was an unspoken topic in my life. It wasn’t necessarily taboo to talk about it, but, before that year, I personally never thought about the importance of mental health until my own was in jeopardy. Being diagnosed with anorexia nervosa as a young teenage male was the launch of my journey to recovery and ultimately, my career in mental health. The experiences I had while in the deep and abysmal depths of my eating disorder has shaped my future career path and my mindset as a human being. I was driven to the route of clinical mental health counseling because of the clear necessity for it in our society. Like any mental illness, it does not just spontaneously pop up out of nowhere without reason. Feelings and inner anxieties should’ve been talked about normally in my household before it was forced to be. Since 2014, I still go to therapy regularly because working on my mental health is a constant journey. Because of my own experiences with mental health before and after my diagnoses, I know the feeling shame, confusion, and disbelief surrounding the process for getting the help you deserve for bettering your mental health. Being resilient in my own recovery from what was and still is deemed a “female problem,” I have the first-hand experience and true empathy needed to work against the stigmas of mental health. I believe that those who have gone through the indescribable feats of mental illnesses are the ones who have the ability to truly empathize and connect with clients on a whole other level. I experienced the mental strain of trying to pay attention in class while being haunted by the daunting secret of being gay. I felt the anger towards my clinicians, and I endured the deafening silence of the social isolation from friends and family. I felt the drain of my mental capacity to function as someone I wasn't and who I thought I was supposed to be for almost 20 years. Suffering in silence with an eating disorder and as a closeted gay man for too long, I needed someone to understand me, reassure me that there is life beyond the mental anguish, and help me to feel safe and empowered as my true self. Through my experiences in collaboration with an earned degree, I will work to help clients of all gender identities, races, sexualities, and religions through the barriers of mental illness and find life beyond their current state. I will not only support and advocate for my clients, but I will sit with them in solidarity to show them they are and will never be alone in the fight for mental well-being. I will be who I needed as a teenager and budding young adult. My career as a licensed therapist in the state of Pennsylvania would not be just my career goal, but my calling to be the qualified professional I need to be to make a difference with whomever I have the honor of working with.
    Priscilla Shireen Luke Scholarship
    volunteer and serve as a board member for the CTC Wellness Foundation, particularly the branch Don't Stall, Just Call! This was founded in 2015 after the tragic death of Christian Ciammetti from the damages of alcohol poisoning and binge drinking. This foundation's mission is to educate on the signs of alcohol poisoning and bring awareness to the lethal effects of binge drinking. Christian suffered in silence from anxiety and depression, and after his death, many of his friends and family started to put the pieces together for the motivation behind his problematic alcohol use. I became involved with this foundation in my senior year of undergraduate study as part of my advocacy project for my senior thesis. I chose this foundation to put a microscope on the toxic effects of college culture on students drinking behaviors and to look more closely at the motivations behind binge drinking. After my research was complete, I became a regular volunteer for the foundation helping the founder of the nonprofit expand outreach and incorporate more evidence-based mental health research into her presentations. After a year of volunteering with her, I was asked to become an active board member of the foundation to help keep the mission going and act as a mental health liaison. As a future mental health therapist, I wholeheartedly believe that mental healthcare is essential to overall wellbeing and every human being on this earth deserves to feel empowered to take action to better their mental health. Through my research in undergrad and in the midst of my graduate program, the self-medication tactic of abusing alcohol and binge drinking to numb and suppress negative mental health symptoms is all too real, especially in the young adult population. As a board member, I use our social media platforms to spread awareness about the motivations behind problematic alcohol use so more and more people can become more aware of their own or another loved one's unhealthy coping mechanisms for mental health issues. I believe everyone deserves to be their best selves, and society has deemed mental health as taboo for too long. My core value as not only a future therapist but also a human being is that all people deserve to be heard and advocated for. Every person's feelings should be felt, and every person's experience on this planet is valid. No matter their race, gender, sexuality, age, religion, or criminal history, all people deserve to learn how to better themselves each day and not numb their feelings with drugs and alcohol.
    Elizabeth Schalk Memorial Scholarship
    Before 2014, mental health was an unspoken topic in my life. It wasn’t necessarily taboo to talk about it, but, before that year, I personally never thought about the importance of mental health until my own was in jeopardy. Being diagnosed with anorexia nervosa as a young teenage male was the launch of my journey to recovery and ultimately, my career in mental health. I was driven to the route of clinical mental health counseling because of the clear necessity for it in our society. Like any mental illness, it does not just spontaneously pop up out of nowhere without reason. Feelings and inner anxieties should’ve been talked about normally in my household before it was forced to be. Since 2014, I still go to therapy regularly because working on my mental health is a constant journey. Being resilient in my own recovery from what was and still is deemed a “female problem,” I have the first-hand experience and true empathy needed to work against the stigmas of mental health. I believe that those who have gone through the indescribable feats of mental illnesses are the ones who have the ability to truly empathize and connect with clients on a whole other level. I experienced the mental strain of trying to pay attention in class while being haunted by the daunting secret of being gay. I felt the anger towards my clinicians, and I endured the deafening silence of the social isolation from friends and family. I felt the drain of my mental capacity to function as someone I wasn't and who I thought I was supposed to be for almost 20 years. Suffering in silence with an eating disorder and as a closeted gay man for too long, I needed someone to understand me, reassure me that there is life beyond the mental anguish, and help me to feel safe and empowered as my true self. Through my experiences in collaboration with an earned degree, I will work to help clients of all gender identities, races, sexualities, and religions through the barriers of mental illness and find life beyond their current state. I will not only support and advocate for my clients, but I will sit with them in solidarity to show them they are and will never be alone in the fight for mental well-being. I will be who I needed as a teenager and budding young adult. My career as a licensed therapist in the state of Pennsylvania would not be just my career goal, but my calling to be the qualified professional I need to be to make a difference with whomever I have the honor of working with.
    VNutrition & Wellness’ Annual LGBTQ+ Vitality Scholarship
    Before 2014, mental health was an unspoken topic in my life. It wasn’t necessarily taboo to talk about it, but, before that year, I personally never thought about the importance of mental health until my own was in jeopardy. Being diagnosed with anorexia nervosa as a young teenage male was the launch of my journey to recovery and ultimately, my career in mental health. I was driven to the route of clinical mental health counseling because of the clear necessity for it in our society. Like any mental illness, it does not just spontaneously pop up out of nowhere without reason. Feelings and inner anxieties should’ve been talked about normally in my household before it was forced to be. Since 2014, I still go to therapy regularly because working on my mental health is a constant journey. Being resilient in my own recovery from what was and still is deemed a “female problem,” I have the first-hand experience and true empathy needed to work against the stigmas of mental health. I believe that those who have gone through the indescribable feats of mental illnesses are the ones who have the ability to truly empathize and connect with clients on a whole other level. I experienced the mental strain of trying to pay attention in class while being haunted by the daunting secret of being gay. I felt the anger towards my clinicians, and I endured the deafening silence of the social isolation from friends and family. I felt the drain of my mental capacity to function as someone I wasn't and who I thought I was supposed to be for almost 20 years. Suffering in silence with an eating disorder and as a closeted gay man for too long, I needed someone to understand me, reassure me that there is life beyond the mental anguish, and help me to feel safe and empowered as my true self. Through my experiences in collaboration with an earned degree, I will work to help clients of all gender identities, races, sexualities, and religions through the barriers of mental illness and find life beyond their current state. I will not only support and advocate for my clients, but I will sit with them in solidarity to show them they are and will never be alone in the fight for mental well-being. I will be who I needed as a teenager and budding young adult. My career as a licensed therapist in the state of Pennsylvania would not be just my career goal, but my calling to be the qualified professional I need to be to make a difference with whomever I have the honor of working with.
    Elevate Mental Health Awareness Scholarship
    Before 2014, mental health was an unspoken topic in my life. It wasn’t necessarily taboo to talk about it, but, before that year, I personally never thought about the importance of mental health until my own was in jeopardy. Being diagnosed with anorexia nervosa as a young teenage male was the launch of my journey to recovery and ultimately, my career in mental health. The experiences I had while in the deep and abysmal depths of my eating disorder has shaped my future career path and my mindset as a human being. I was driven to the route of clinical mental health counseling because of the clear necessity for it in our society. Like any mental illness, it does not just spontaneously pop up out of nowhere without reason. Feelings and inner anxieties should’ve been talked about normally in my household before it was forced to be. Since 2014, I still go to therapy regularly because working on my mental health is a constant journey. Because of my own experiences with mental health before and after my diagnoses, I know the feeling shame, confusion, and disbelief surrounding the process for getting the help you deserve for bettering your mental health. Being resilient in my own recovery from what was and still is deemed a “female problem,” I have the first-hand experience and true empathy needed to work against the stigmas of mental health. I believe that those who have gone through the indescribable feats of mental illnesses are the ones who have the ability to truly empathize and connect with clients on a whole other level. I experienced the mental strain of trying to pay attention in class while being haunted by the daunting secret of being gay. I felt the anger towards my clinicians, and I endured the deafening silence of the social isolation from friends and family. I felt the drain of my mental capacity to function as someone I wasn't and who I thought I was supposed to be for almost 20 years. Suffering in silence with an eating disorder and as a closeted gay man for too long, I needed someone to understand me, reassure me that there is life beyond the mental anguish, and help me to feel safe and empowered as my true self. Through my experiences in collaboration with an earned degree, I will work to help clients of all gender identities, races, sexualities, and religions through the barriers of mental illness and find life beyond their current state. I will not only support and advocate for my clients, but I will sit with them in solidarity to show them they are and will never be alone in the fight for mental well-being. I will be who I needed as a teenager and budding young adult. My career as a licensed therapist in the state of Pennsylvania would not be just my career goal, but my calling to be the qualified professional I need to be to make a difference with whomever I have the honor of working with.
    Mental Health Importance Scholarship
    Before 2014, mental health was an unspoken topic in my life. It wasn’t necessarily taboo to talk about it, but, before that year, I personally never thought about the importance of mental health until my own was in jeopardy. Being diagnosed with anorexia nervosa as a young teenage male was the launch of my journey to recovery and ultimately, my career in mental health. I was driven to the route of clinical mental health counseling because of the clear necessity for it in our society. Like any mental illness, it does not just spontaneously pop up out of nowhere without reason. Feelings and inner anxieties should’ve been talked about normally in my household before it was forced to be. Since 2014, I still go to therapy regularly because working on my mental health is a constant journey. Being resilient in my own recovery from what was and still is deemed a “female problem,” I have the first-hand experience and true empathy needed to work against the stigmas of mental health. I believe that those who have gone through the indescribable feats of mental illnesses are the ones who have the ability to truly empathize and connect with clients on a whole other level. I experienced the mental strain of trying to pay attention in class while being haunted by the daunting secret of being gay. I felt the anger towards my clinicians, and I endured the deafening silence of the social isolation from friends and family. I felt the drain of my mental capacity to function as someone I wasn't and who I thought I was supposed to be for almost 20 years. Suffering in silence with an eating disorder and as a closeted gay man for too long, I needed someone to understand me, reassure me that there is life beyond the mental anguish, and help me to feel safe and empowered as my true self. Through my experiences in collaboration with an earned degree, I will work to help clients of all gender identities, races, sexualities, and religions through the barriers of mental illness and find life beyond their current state. I will not only support and advocate for my clients, but I will sit with them in solidarity to show them they are and will never be alone in the fight for mental well-being. I will be who I needed as a teenager and budding young adult. My career as a licensed therapist in the state of Pennsylvania would not be just my career goal, but my calling to be the qualified professional I need to be to make a difference with whomever I have the honor of working with.
    Adam Montes Pride Scholarship
    Before 2014, mental health was an unspoken topic in my life. It wasn’t necessarily taboo to talk about it, but, before that year, I personally never thought about the importance of mental health until my own was in jeopardy. Being diagnosed with anorexia nervosa as a young teenage male was the launch of my journey to recovery and ultimately, my career in mental health. I was driven to the route of clinical mental health counseling because of the clear necessity for it in our society. Like any mental illness, it does not just spontaneously pop up out of nowhere without reason. Feelings and inner anxieties should’ve been talked about normally in my household before it was forced to be. I was struggling with raging homophobia toward myself that instilled into my through years of Catholic school and our heteronormative society. Being resilient in my own recovery from what was and still is deemed a “female problem,” I have the first-hand experience and true empathy needed to work against the stigmas of mental health. I believe that those who have gone through the indescribable feats of mental illnesses are the ones who have the ability to truly empathize and connect with clients on a whole other level. I experienced the mental strain of trying to pay attention in class while being haunted by the daunting secret of being gay. I felt the anger towards my clinicians, and I endured the deafening silence of the social isolation from friends and family. I felt the drain of my mental capacity to function as someone I wasn't and who I thought I was supposed to be for almost 20 years. Suffering in silence with an eating disorder and as a closeted gay man for too long, I needed someone to understand me, reassure me that there is life beyond the mental anguish, and help me to feel safe and empowered as my true self. Through my experiences in collaboration with an earned degree, I will work to help clients of all gender identities, races, sexualities, and religions through the barriers of mental illness and find life beyond their current state. I will not only support and advocate for my clients, but I will sit with them in solidarity to show them they are and will never be alone in the fight for mental well-being. I will be who I needed as a teenager and budding young adult. My career as a licensed therapist in the state of Pennsylvania would not be just my career goal, but my calling to be the qualified professional I need to be to make a difference with whomever I have the honor of working with.
    Trever David Clark Memorial Scholarship
    Before 2014, mental health was an unspoken topic in my life. It wasn’t necessarily taboo to talk about it, but, before that year, I personally never thought about the importance of mental health until my own was in jeopardy. Being diagnosed with anorexia nervosa as a young teenage male was the launch of my journey to recovery and ultimately, my career in mental health. I was driven to the route of clinical mental health counseling as a future career because of the clear necessity for it in our society. Like any mental illness, it does not just spontaneously pop up out of nowhere without reason. Feelings and inner anxieties should’ve been talked about normally in my household before it was forced to be. Being resilient in my own recovery from what was and still is deemed a “female problem” in our society, I have the resolute qualities and first-hand experience needed to work against the stigmas of mental health. I believe that those who have gone through the indescribable feats of mental illnesses are the ones who have the ability to truly empathize and connect with clients on a whole other level. I see myself as a wounded healer, and my experiences of being on the other side of the therapeutic relationship will serve me in my career as a therapist. I experienced the mental strain of trying to pay attention in class while being haunted by body dysmorphia. I felt the anger towards my clinicians, and I endured the deafening silence of the social isolation from friends and family. I felt the drain of my mental capacity to function as a human being. Suffering in silence with an eating disorder and as a closeted gay man for years, I needed someone to understand me, reassure me that there is life beyond the anxiety, and help me to feel safe as my true self. Through my experiences in collaboration with an earned degree after my intended graduation year of 2024, I will work to help clients of all gender identities, races, sexualities, and religions through the barriers of mental illness and find life beyond their current state. My career as a licensed therapist in the state of Pennsylvania would not be just my career goal, but my calling to be the qualified professional I need to be to make a difference with whomever I have the honor of working with.
    Reasons To Be - In Memory of Jimmy Watts
    I volunteer and serve as a board member for the CTC Wellness Foundation, particularly the branch Don't Stall, Just Call! This was founded in 2015 after the tragic death of Christian Ciammetti from the damages of alcohol poisoning and binge drinking. This foundation's mission is to educate on the signs of alcohol poisoning and bring awareness to the lethal effects of binge drinking. Christian suffered in silence from anxiety and depression, and after his death, many of his friends and family started to put the pieces together for the motivation behind his problematic alcohol use. I became involved with this foundation in my senior year of undergraduate study as part of my advocacy project for my senior thesis. I chose this foundation to put a microscope on the toxic effects of college culture on students drinking behaviors and to look more closely at the motivations behind binge drinking. After my research was complete, I became a regular volunteer for the foundation helping the founder of the nonprofit expand outreach and incorporate more evidence-based mental health research into her presentations. After a year of volunteering with her, I was asked to become an active board member of the foundation to help keep the mission going and act as a mental health liaison. As a future mental health therapist, I wholeheartedly believe that mental healthcare is essential to overall wellbeing and every human being on this earth deserves to feel empowered tot ake action to better their mental health. Through my research in undergrad and in the midst of my graduate program, the self-medication tactic of abusing alcohol and binge drinking to numb and suppress negative mental health symptoms is all too real, especially in the young adult population. As a board member, I use our social media platforms to spread awareness about the motivations behind problematic alcohol use so more and more people can become more aware of their own or another loved one's unhealthy coping mechanisms for mental health issues. I believe everyone deserves to be their best selves, and society has deemed mental health as taboo for too long. My core value as not only a future therapist but also a human being is that all people deserve to be heard and advocated for. Every person's feelings should be felt, and every person's experience on this planet is valid. No matter their race, gender, sexuality, age, religion, or criminal history, all people deserve to learn how to better themselves each day and not numb their feelings with drugs and alcohol.
    Healthy Eating Scholarship
    The body needs to be treated from a holistic perspective. As a future therapist going through a graduate program for mental health counseling, I will help my clients understand the connection between their diets and their mental well-being. What we put into our bodies matters more than many really understand. The mind-gut connection is a necessary concept that all people should not only understand but internalize so that we can overcome mental health issues and other obstacles from multiple angles. When I put in the effort to focus on healthy eating habits, I always make sure to include fruits and sources of probiotics like Greek yogurt. When I think about eating habits, though, I believe it is more than just the actual food I eat; I believe it is the habits I create around the act of eating. These behaviors include eating slowly and mindfully, not being distracted during meal times, and practicing belly breathing before meals to optimize digestion. As someone who suffered greatly and still suffers from digestive issues linked to mental health issues, I understand how eating habits and behaviors affect my overall well-being. When I practice these behaviors of eating more nutrient-dense foods and eating mindfully, I notice that my overall physical and mental well-being increase. I hold a lot of tension in my stomach and shoulders, but knowing that I am still taking care of my body by eating well through times of stress and anxiety helps to relieve that tension. I know that my career field requires me to set an example for my clients on how to take of themselves so that they can take care of others. If I do not perform the simple act of eating well and making better choices on eating food that is denser in vitamins and nutrients that will help relieve my anxiety and digestive issues, I can show up for my clients in the way that they need and deserve me to. I notice that if I get too stressed and overeat, emotionally eat, or eat too much artificial sugars or preservatives, I genuinely notice an increase in my irritability, depression, anxiety, and motivation to do tasks at work and school. Most importantly, when I make better choices about what I put into my body, I practice the ultimate form of self-care. Self-care is a "buzz" word that our society has labeled as lavish spa days, shopping sprees, or indulgent massages. Eating healthily is a simple and readily accessible form of self-care, and this act is something I choose to do every day multiple times a day to be the best version of myself .
    Jameela Jamil x I Weigh Scholarship
    Being a gay male raised Catholic and sent to a Catholic school from preschool to 8th grade, I felt dirty and inhumane. The teachings that were instilled in me in Church and religion classes for 10 years made me absolutely ashamed of myself from the time I graduated 8th grade until I was 19 years old when I could not take it anymore. I had to be me. Now, I advocate for all LGBTQ+ people that no matter how they were raised, what is being taught to them as a child, or what the world says about who they are that they are much more than that. They are human and belong on this earth as themselves. Their true selves! Going back to Church now is not something I am willing to do regardless of holidays. While my family may act as though I will go to hell if I do not go, I will not go entertain a religion that thinks less of me because of something I did not choose to be nor can I control. This backbone I have been trying to create for myself, not just towards Catholocism but politically or socially, is still developing and always will be developing. I am now 23 and have been openly gay for 4 years. The impact was a backbone and the realization that I can be my true self, and the world will not end as a result.
    Bold Future of Education Scholarship
    A change that would make education better for future generations is more funding for mental healthcare to make more specialists and mental health professionals accessible to make the classroom a welcoming and comfortable place for all students.
    Bold Wise Words Scholarship
    The wisest words I have heard and still live by are "You must push through the discomfort now in order to be comfortable in the future." It sounds very generic, but those words were said to me by my therapist during the first year after being diagnosed with an eating disorder and doing therapy for the first time. I was struggling so hard to eat without guilt, and my therapist would say to me every session that the discomfort I am feeling is only temporary, it won't last, and that I have to push through that discomfort and anxiety in order to start to feel more and more comfortable in the future. While I thought it was impossible and stupid even at the time, she was right. 8 years later, I still see the same therapist, keep that mantra close to my heart with daily activities that give me unnecessary anxiety, and tell her how much those words have impacted my life. She has truly shaped the way I see my disorder and how I will lead my life as a future LPC and therapist myself.
    Elevate Mental Health Awareness Scholarship
    Being diagnosed with an eating disorder as a male at only 13 years old, I had to face deeply dark challenges every day through high school and the beginning of my undergraduate years of college that had me on the brink of death's door. I'll be honest and blunt. Anorexia Nervosa was sucking the vitality from my organs, and being the first person in my family to have such an unavoidable mental health issue, we navigated this disorder blindly. Due to the anxiety and depressive isolation that my eating disorder caused, the toll it took on my relationships with friends was profound. It destroyed friendships and strained others to an extreme beyond words can describe. Through this disorder, my relationship with my parents became stronger and sturdier, but they will always be wary and know the red flags when anxiety creeps its way back into my life unsuspectingly. My relationship with my twin sister flourished once I received the treatment I needed, and my eyes were finally open to how my disorder forced her to mature so quickly because she was prepared to be an only child many times and the attention of my parents was diverted to me for most of the time during the span of our high school years due to constant medical scares and ER visits. I am blessed to have an amazingly supportive family, but I am well aware that this is not always the case for many sufferers of any mental illness. 8 years now since that diagnosis, I am in a place of clarity, wellness, and stability. My struggles with mental illness shaped my journey for career goals majorly as I now am preparing to be an LPC and mental health clinician at the Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine starting in the Fall of 2022. For me, being a psychotherapist is not just about learning about different mental disorders, getting a certificate and license to practice, memorizing the steps for cognitive behavioral therapy, and going by the steps laid out in a textbook. It is about pulling from empathy and combining it with backed research therapeutic interventions to make sure the patients I'll see in my office one day feel like they are being treated as a human by a human. Being a male with an eating disorder opened my eyes to the distorted world we live in. Eating disorders being a "female disorder" prevented me for years from being seen as a severe case, getting proper treatment (finding treatment in general), and overall accepting that this could even happen to me since all we are presented with when reading about eating disorders are the female population. So, how could this happen to me? Social media and the world of musical theatre performance propelled me into the development of an eating disorder, so as a future LPC, I vow to work to chip away and tackle this monstrous stigma around males with eating disorders and mental health issues in general. Each human being on this planet deserves to be validated and treated as an individual with kindness, compassion, and understanding -- not by a textbook alone.
    Bold Mental Health Awareness Scholarship
    A practical solution for people struggling with mental health issues is treating those people with therapeutic tactics in combination with sympathy and empathy. Coming from firsthand experience, being treated for mental health issues by doctors, psychiatrists, and therapists from a position of pure cold research without passion or a place of true understanding is absolutely worthless and frivolous. I cannot even elaborate on how crucial it is for patients to feel validated, secure, safe and that there is a future beyond what is their current state. Being in the treatment of care of a psychiatrist who prescribes an SSRI, asks how you're feeling with a stoic face, and sends you on your way for $300 a week is not how mental healthcare should work. How is that even considered acceptable by any person in the mental health field thinking they are dedicated to the betterment of their patients? While I don't believe there will ever be a solution that is applicable to every situation across the board for each and every person with mental health issues, clinicians applying their own empathy and sympathy into treatment plans is a pretty good place to start.
    Ethel Hayes Destigmatization of Mental Health Scholarship
    Being diagnosed with an eating disorder as a male at only 13 years old, I had to face deeply dark challenges every day through high school and the beginning of my undergraduate years of college that had me on the brink of death's door. I'll be honest and blunt. Anorexia Nervosa was sucking the vitality from my organs, and being the first person in my family to have such an unavoidable mental health issue, we navigated this disorder blindly. Due to the anxiety and depressive isolation that my eating disorder caused, the toll it took on my relationships with friends was profound. It destroyed friendships and strained others to an extreme beyond words can describe. Through this disorder, my relationship with my parents became stronger and sturdier, but they will always be wary and know the red flags when anxiety creeps its way back into my life unsuspectingly. My relationship with my twin sister flourished once I received the treatment I needed, and my eyes were finally open to how my disorder forced her to mature so quickly because she was prepared to be an only child many times and the attention of my parents was diverted to me for most of the time during the span of our high school years due to constant medical scares and ER visits. I am blessed to have an amazingly supportive family, but I am well aware that this is not always the case for many sufferers of any mental illness. 8 years now since that diagnosis, I am in a place of clarity, wellness, and stability. My struggles with mental illness shaped my journey for career goals majorly as I now am preparing to be an LPC and mental health clinician at the Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine starting in the Fall of 2022. For me, being a psychotherapist is not just about learning about different mental disorders, getting a certificate and license to practice, memorizing the steps for cognitive behavioral therapy, and going by the steps laid out in a textbook. It is about pulling from empathy and combining it with backed research therapeutic interventions to make sure the patients I'll see in my office one day feel like they are being treated as a human by a human. Being a male with an eating disorder opened my eyes to the distorted world we live in. Eating disorders being a "female disorder" prevented me for years from being seen as a severe case, getting proper treatment (finding treatment in general), and overall accepting that this could even happen to me since all we are presented with when reading about eating disorders are the female population. So, how could this happen to me? Social media and the world of musical theatre performance propelled me into the development of an eating disorder, so as a future LPC, I vow to work to chip away and tackle this monstrous stigma around males with eating disorders and mental health issues in general. Each human being on this planet deserves to be validated and treated as an individual with kindness, compassion, and understanding -- not by a textbook alone.