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Student Mental Health Ambassador Track

Join students from across Pennsylvania and the nation for this interactive and engaging workshop. Leaders from The Jed Foundation (JED) and Active Minds will guide students through presentations and exercises on being active participants in creating a culture which promotes positive mental health and taking an active role in caring for the well-being of the campus.

The first session will be held on May 20 from 11:30 – 12:30 and will cover information about trends in mental health and student advocacy nationwide, the work of Active Minds and JED, and how to create an action plan to advocate for change around mental health and well-being on your campus. The second session, held on May 20 from 1:30 – 2:30, will focus on identifying those priorities and working in small groups with advice from JED and Active Minds on how to start making those changes back on your campus.

Click here for registration, and be sure to select “Student” for the discounted student rate.

Student Track Leaders
  • Ethan Fields
    JED Foundation

    Ethan joined JED in October 2018. Most recently, Ethan held positions in residence life and student conduct at Drexel University and Lehigh University. His experience includes collateral assignments in gender violence education and support, equal opportunity compliance, health prevention strategies, student life curriculum, and restorative practices. Ethan grew up in the coalfields of Southwest Virginia and completed his B.A. in History at King University (TN) and a M.S.Ed. in Higher Education Administration at Old Dominion University (VA).

  • Sophia Gordon
    JED Foundation

    Sophia joined JED at the start of 2022, bringing with her a background in higher education, psychology, and impactful advocacy. Previously, she worked in the Muhlenberg College Office of Alumni Affairs and as a tutor in the college writing center. Sophia has since merged her tutoring experience with her passion for criminal justice advocacy, serving as a volunteer tutor for justice-impacted students with The Petey Greene Program. Additionally, she was project coordinator for the Change the Stage initiative and content manager for Sirkin Research. Sophia is a born and raised New Yorker who graduated with honors from Muhlenberg College with a degree in Psychology and Gender Studies.

  • Michael King
    JED Foundation

    Michael joined the JED team in April 2021. Prior to doing so, Michael worked in college student support roles at Barnard College, the Fashion Institute of Technology, and Ball State University. His experiences include work in residential life, curriculum design and implementation, inclusion and equity, and facilitating meaningful dialogue. He is passionate about the power of storytelling, human empathy and connection, and brave conversations. Michael received his Bachelor of Arts in English at Ball State University and his Master of Science in College Student Affairs at Eastern Illinois University.

  • Markie Pasternak
    Active Minds

    Markie oversees the Active Minds Chapter Network and plays a key part in chapter activations along with the strategic planning of how Active Minds will use and empower its chapters across the country. Markie is originally from Green Bay, Wisconsin and received her Bachelor’s in psychology from Marquette University. During her time at Marquette, Markie served as her Active Minds’ Chapter President and the President of the Student Advisory Committee from 2015-2016. Markie went on to receive a Master’s of Science in higher education and student affairs from Indiana University-Bloomington. After graduate school, Markie worked at Auburn University for three years in Health Promotion and Wellness Services under the Division of Student Affairs focusing on mental health programming and peer health education. During her time at Auburn, Markie was the co-advisor for the campus’ Active Minds Chapter. In her spare time, you can find Markie coaching figure skating at her local ice rink, cheering on her hometown team, the Green Bay Packers, or playing with her dog, Brooks.

  • Hayley Harnicher
    Active Minds

    Hayley Harnicher is the Tour Manager for Send Silence Packing®, Active Minds’ traveling suicide prevention exhibit that aims to end the silence that surrounds mental health and suicide and connects visitors with resources for support and action. These exhibits have reached over a million individuals, and under Hayley’s leadership, has nearly doubled its impact and reach. Currently, she is primarily responsible for equipment and resource management, staff recruitment and oversight, and suicide prevention expertise and training. Before taking on this role, she has served Active Minds in a variety of roles over the past 10+ years including a chapter leader, Student Advisory Committee member, intern, Send Silence Packing Display Coordinator, and Program Coordinator. Hayley graduated with her BA in Psychology from the University of Rochester, and has a passion for program development, efficiency, sustainability, and growth.

  • Emily Meeks
    Active Minds

    Emily supports the evaluation of Active Minds’ programs. Emily was a member of an Active Minds chapter as a college student, and her involvement in Active Minds led to a passion for student mental health. She has a background in public health programming and has supported health education initiatives related to stress management, chronic disease treatment, overdose prevention, and more in higher education and nonprofit settings. A Rocky Mount, Virginia native, Emily graduated from Virginia Tech with B.S. degrees in biology and psychology and a Master of Public Health. In her free time, she enjoys doing yoga, hiking, playing the trumpet, and spending quality time with her cats and family.

  • Ethan Fields
    JED Foundation

    Ethan joined JED in October 2018. Most recently, Ethan held positions in residence life and student conduct at Drexel University and Lehigh University. His experience includes collateral assignments in gender violence education and support, equal opportunity compliance, health prevention strategies, student life curriculum, and restorative practices. Ethan grew up in the coalfields of Southwest Virginia and completed his B.A. in History at King University (TN) and a M.S.Ed. in Higher Education Administration at Old Dominion University (VA).

  • Sophia Gordon
    JED Foundation

    Sophia joined JED at the start of 2022, bringing with her a background in higher education, psychology, and impactful advocacy. Previously, she worked in the Muhlenberg College Office of Alumni Affairs and as a tutor in the college writing center. Sophia has since merged her tutoring experience with her passion for criminal justice advocacy, serving as a volunteer tutor for justice-impacted students with The Petey Greene Program. Additionally, she was project coordinator for the Change the Stage initiative and content manager for Sirkin Research. Sophia is a born and raised New Yorker who graduated with honors from Muhlenberg College with a degree in Psychology and Gender Studies.

  • Michael King
    JED Foundation

    Michael joined the JED team in April 2021. Prior to doing so, Michael worked in college student support roles at Barnard College, the Fashion Institute of Technology, and Ball State University. His experiences include work in residential life, curriculum design and implementation, inclusion and equity, and facilitating meaningful dialogue. He is passionate about the power of storytelling, human empathy and connection, and brave conversations. Michael received his Bachelor of Arts in English at Ball State University and his Master of Science in College Student Affairs at Eastern Illinois University.

  • Markie Pasternak
    Active Minds

    Markie oversees the Active Minds Chapter Network and plays a key part in chapter activations along with the strategic planning of how Active Minds will use and empower its chapters across the country. Markie is originally from Green Bay, Wisconsin and received her Bachelor’s in psychology from Marquette University. During her time at Marquette, Markie served as her Active Minds’ Chapter President and the President of the Student Advisory Committee from 2015-2016. Markie went on to receive a Master’s of Science in higher education and student affairs from Indiana University-Bloomington. After graduate school, Markie worked at Auburn University for three years in Health Promotion and Wellness Services under the Division of Student Affairs focusing on mental health programming and peer health education. During her time at Auburn, Markie was the co-advisor for the campus’ Active Minds Chapter. In her spare time, you can find Markie coaching figure skating at her local ice rink, cheering on her hometown team, the Green Bay Packers, or playing with her dog, Brooks.

  • Hayley Harnicher
    Active Minds

    Hayley Harnicher is the Tour Manager for Send Silence Packing®, Active Minds’ traveling suicide prevention exhibit that aims to end the silence that surrounds mental health and suicide and connects visitors with resources for support and action. These exhibits have reached over a million individuals, and under Hayley’s leadership, has nearly doubled its impact and reach. Currently, she is primarily responsible for equipment and resource management, staff recruitment and oversight, and suicide prevention expertise and training. Before taking on this role, she has served Active Minds in a variety of roles over the past 10+ years including a chapter leader, Student Advisory Committee member, intern, Send Silence Packing Display Coordinator, and Program Coordinator. Hayley graduated with her BA in Psychology from the University of Rochester, and has a passion for program development, efficiency, sustainability, and growth.

  • Emily Meeks
    Active Minds

    Emily supports the evaluation of Active Minds’ programs. Emily was a member of an Active Minds chapter as a college student, and her involvement in Active Minds led to a passion for student mental health. She has a background in public health programming and has supported health education initiatives related to stress management, chronic disease treatment, overdose prevention, and more in higher education and nonprofit settings. A Rocky Mount, Virginia native, Emily graduated from Virginia Tech with B.S. degrees in biology and psychology and a Master of Public Health. In her free time, she enjoys doing yoga, hiking, playing the trumpet, and spending quality time with her cats and family.