Anisha – University of Washington

Public Policy Associate

I am so honored and blessed to have been a part of AFSP’s Public Policy Team this semester. Having a personal connection to suicide and having previous experience with suicide as a Resident Adviser on my college campus, I knew an internship with AFSP would be as meaningful as it was educational. As a public health and legal studies double major, this internship allowed me to greater explore my interest in mental health policy.

The highlight of my summer was working and attending AFSP’s Annual Advocacy Forum, where I had the privilege of meeting and interacting with our 250+ field advocates, meeting with Members of Congress on Hill Day, and advocating for mental health reform and suicide prevention policies. This experience has made me value the power of grassroots organizing and advocacy. Some of my other work included attending hearings on Capitol Hill, writing news posts for the website, and completing an extensive research project on mental health professional suicide prevention training. My work at AFSP allowed me to apply my academic knowledge in the field of public health and policy, and made me more certain in my course of study and my career path.

I thank AFSP for the many professional and personal opportunities I have received this summer, which would not have been possible without the support of John, Trevor, Nicole, and the other interns. My mentor, John, allowed me to craft this experience into my own and encouraged me to pursue my various interests. This internship has made me more confident in my pursuit of a health policy career. As I return to my university this fall, I will continue to be an advocate for suicide prevention in my community, and I hope to enter the field of mental health policy in D.C. after graduation.