What is your background?
I am a proud Fort Wayne native and received both my bachelor's and master's degrees from Purdue Fort Wayne. I am currently finishing up my PhD in Health Education from the University of Toledo.
How did you first get involved with YLNI?
After moving back from Toledo upon passing my PhD comprehensive exams, I wanted to get more involved in the Fort Wayne community to inspire positive change. Having heard about YLNI even before moving, I applied and was awarded the Ian Rolland Courageous Leader Scholarship to attend the YLNI leadership institute this past spring.
Are you involved with any other community engagement activities in the area?
I have been working for the non-profit Respect Team, which goes into area schools to discuss healthy and respectful relationships. I developed and present a curriculum on the topics of body image and eating disorders, which is also what my dissertation is focused on. Additionally, beginning in 2021, I am honored to have been selected to serve on the Board of Directors for the Mad Anthony Children's Hope House.
Where and when do your best ideas come to you?
My best ideas usually come to me when I am out enjoying nature, swimming laps, or sometimes late at night (I have a notepad on my bedside table for such occasions).
What do you do or value outside of work that contributes to when you are at work?
Traveling is something that I highly value as I think it's important to have new experiences and "get away" from the daily routine. Seeing and experiencing new places, people and events helps put life into perspective and I will give me ideas to bring back to my work and personal life.Additionally, I think it's important to establish "tech detox" time for some portion of the week for my own mental health and well-being.