Happy Wednesday, Slugs! As your blog and social media coordinator, I’m happy to share a little bit about myself today. This is my second year with the Peer Education Program and I love working with other peers in order to improve access and decrease stigma around mental health services. I hope you’re all enjoying the blog and everything that we do!

What do you do regularly to relieve stress?

One of the things I like to do that helps me relieve stress is to make a “To Do” list. At the beginning of the week I put everything I need to do on a list and leave it on my desk so that I can check things off as I go. It’s a really satisfying feeling when I get to cross off a task or an assignment, and it helps me feel like I am in control and keeps me from getting too overwhelmed. I also take advantage of Google Calendar, and I schedule everything from my class schedule to advising appointments along with 10 minute reminders so that I’ll always feel like I know what’s coming. Finally, I also exercise at least 3 times a week. Going to the gym doesn’t work for me, so I found out about the group exercise classes through OPERS anog2_cW3vF3CvbyjwXmoMngxrkIUVXaL8XeUExJDN6-nYZNCKha4jAvMNaoQi6K5FFx58yAv8k6JvtL_DUIkHbeeCWnycaaA--NiUCYs2818qUUI90PI_lCtgbN-bSKpqQ6Udiqqed I love taking the yoga and kickboxing classes! They’re a great way to relieve stress while burning calories, and meeting new people.

Tell us about something you’re passionate about outside of school (e.g., clubs, hobbies, interests, volunteering, activities, etc.)

In my free time you’ll always catch me with a cup of coffee in one hand and a planner in the other. I love being outside hiking, swimming, or at the beach! But when I’m inside, I really enjoy working with children on the spectrum as a Behavior Technician, helping out my fellow students by revising cover letters and resumes at the UCSC Career Center, and volunteering for my school as the CAPS Peer Education Social Media/Blog coordinator, and the Social Chair for Active Minds, a club committed to the destigmatization of mental health. I am really passionate about helping people understand the idea that mental health is just as important as physical health. I am so excited to be a Peer Educator because I want to spread the word that mental health is important and if you ever need help maintaining it, it is nothing to be ashamed of.

If you could share one thing that you’d like your peers to know about CAPS, what would it be?

I want everyone to know that CAPS is here ready to welcome you with open arms. When your ankle swells up and you can’t walk, do you go see a doctor? Well, when you need someone to talk to, CAPS is also here. It’s as simple as that.

Emma Burke is a third year Psychology and Literature double major affiliated with Merrill.