Meet Our Team 

 Michelle Rojas

I’m a student attending Washington-Liberty High School in Arlington, Virginia where I'm involved in my school’s Equity & Excellence club, National Honor Society chapter, and the Latin American Student Association club. 

As a mental health advocate, I seek opportunities to improve the wellbeing of others. I'm a part of the American Psychological Association ,Children, Youth, and Families Office, Youth Advisory Board where I provide my insight about the current mental health crisis. I'm currently working on expanding mental health resources for high school students because I hold a firm belief that improved academic achievement and health starts with a strong support system in school. 

Benedict Ballman

I'm a junior at Winston Churchill High School in Rockville, Maryland. The mental health crisis in America has always been very present within and around my life. From family, friends, and even myself struggling with mental health, I have sought from a young age to make a change where I see nobody else seems to be. 

My real work with mental health began through the Kaleidoscope Fellowship, where I was given the resources necessary to do research into the Montgomery County Public School's counseling departments, the topic of criticism for a long time. From this research, I was able to identify problems, and work alongside county officials to solve them. Currently, I'm working to launch my Students for Students peer support program at Winston Churchill, which seeks to support mental health within the student body. 

Benjamin Haynes

I'm a 25 year old passionate about mental health and elevating student voices. After graduating from UNC Chapel Hill in 2017, I went to Malaysia to teach English for a year. I launched and spearheaded a project exhibition focused on building student agency and confidence for schools and students from around the country. After getting back, I worked at Kaleidoscope Education to lead their summer fellowship program, where I met Ben & Michelle.

 

It is my firm belief that the mental health crisis for adolescents is the central issue we face as a country. If we are unable to equip ALL students with the resources, mindsets & relationships that they need in high school, then society will be worse off. Students will not be learning or growing in the ways that they could be and their trajectories will be altered. Let's put mental health support at the forefront of what a school and community does so we can give each student the ultimate gift: the autonomy to pave their own path.

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