Why we chose to discuss this topic.
Universities across the United States are experiencing a defining moment. Not only have rates of depression, anxiety, and substance abuse increased among students during the COVID-19 pandemic, but universities are falling behind when it comes to connecting mental health providers with increasingly-diverse student communities.
Moving forward, campus health leaders have the opportunity to operate more creatively and proactively to address the unique challenges historically-marginalized students face when seeking mental health support.
Dr. Leah Goodman – Clinical Instructor, Occupational Therapy at University of Illinois, Chicago
Dr. Goodman is a licensed occupational therapist and clinical faculty at the University of Illinois-Chicago. She developed, teaches, and conducts research on "Promoting Wellbeing", a credit-bearing course which aims to support student mental health and academic success. Her work positions well-being as an equity issue and aims to integrate mental health and well-being into the core of higher education through curriculum development, inclusive teaching, student-led initiatives, and non-clinical models of care. Dr. Goodman is also the Partnerships Development Manager at Mantra Health.
JR Kuo – National Speaker, Trainer, & Coach at CoffeeWithJR
JR Kuo is a national speaker, trainer, and coach. He is the founder of CoffeeWithJR, a company that specializes in providing culturally competent mental health and diversity/inclusion trainings. JR has over 10 years of experience in professional speaking. He has trained college students and professionals on mental health at over 45 universities and dozens of organizations across the country.
Dr. Sudha Wadhwani – Coordinator of Outreach and Prevention & Psychologist at Montclair State University CAPS
Dr. Sudha Wadhwani is a licensed psychologist and Coordinator of Outreach and Prevention at Montclair State University CAPS, with a specialization in developing and implementing diversity, inclusion, and social justice initiatives. Working with students of color, at the individual, group, and community levels, has been her career long passion. She is a founding steering committee member of the Association for University and College Counseling Outreach (AUCCCO), and speaks widely on intersectionality, acculturation, multicultural competence, increasing access to care for marginalized populations, and disparities in mental health.
Dr. Kristel Carrington – Medical Director, Mantra Health
Dr. Kristel Carrington is a Board-Certified Adult Psychiatrist in Manhattan who specializes in treating problems such as depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder, spectrum illness, OCD, psychosis, relationship challenges, personality concerns, and addiction. A majority of her clients are in their 20s and 30s and are navigating challenges surrounding their careers and identity. Dr. Carrington helps them determine who they truly are and what they want out of life.