Depression Grand Challenge engages with UCLA students at event featuring Netflix original series’ “13 Reasons Why” cast

September 28, 2017

UCLA hosted a panel discussion with cast members from the Netflix original series 13 Reasons Why on September 27, 2017. The event was programmed as part of UCLA’s True Bruin Welcome, a week-long welcome reception hosted by UCLA First Year Experience designed to familiarize new and incoming students with campus life and resources. Andrea Letamendi, Associate Director of Mental Health Training, Intervention, and Response for the Office of Residential Life at UCLA, moderated a dynamic discussion with cast members Alisha Boe and Justin Prentice about the show and mental health, afterwards fielding questions from the audience.

The panel was followed by a presentation from Jonathan Flint, Depression Grand Challenge (DGC) Executive Committee team member. Professor Flint shared an overview of the DGC’s four components – 100K Study, Innovative Treatment Network, Discovery Neuroscience, and Awareness and Hope – and especially highlighted The Check In Survey offered by the DGC. The survey, which was announced earlier in the month by Chancellor Block, is the first-ever campus wide mental health screening program conducted at a university.

The survey assesses whether students are experiencing symptoms of anxiety or depression, providing that feedback in real time. After viewing this personalized feedback, students may immediately register for a free treatment study tailored to their needs.

The Depression Grand Challenge (DGC) engaged with students at activities before and after the panel discussion and provided further information about The Check In Survey. Hundreds of students (pictured above) were reached through these activities and signed up to receive information about the survey.

UCLA Grand Challenges team pictured with 13 Reasons Why cast members Justin Prentice (left) and Alisha Boe (second to right).

The DGC would like to thank La’Tonya (LT) Rease Miles and other First Year Experience team members for organizing the event and including us.

Please note that as of September 2018, The Check In Survey was rebranded as the Mental Health Tracker as part of the DGC’s Screening and Treatment for Anxiety and Depression (STAND) program.