By Julia Schemmer | June 25, 2016
From May 22-23, UC Irvine hosted hundreds of students from across the UC, CSU, and community college systems for an incredible conference shedding light on mental health. Some of the incredible speakers that students heard from were Siavash Zohoori, a survivor of the 2014 Isle Vista shooting, Lacy Wright, a mental health activist at UC Santa Barbara, and Roman Rivilis, a student advocate and recent graduate of UC Davis.
Attendees had the opportunity of asking their questions about mental health advocacy to some of the top campus and systemwide administrators including Dr. Jeanne Manese, the Director of the UC Irvine Counseling Center, Dr. Taisha Caldwell-Harvey, the UC Office of the President Mental Health Programs Manager, and Ryan Sims, the Graduate Academic Counselor for UC Santa Barbara.
The conference featured student workshops on a variety of topics, from the intersections of reproductive justice and mental health to bystander intervention training. Students also enjoyed panels led by other students about their own mental health experiences, providing safe forums to build community. From spoken word events to a screening of the film “Voices: The Human and Untold Stories of Psychosis”, the weekend provided a powerful foundation for building solidarity and coalitions across the University of California.
At UCI’s Reclaim Mental Health conference, the room was filled with students eager to learn about the issues surrounding mental health.
Julia Schemmer is a first-year Public Policy major at UC Riverside and Media Intern for the UC Students Association. Her goal is simple: to put the lit back in politics.