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Elevating Wellness Through Leadership

In this session, our two speakers will each share how they use their formal leadership roles to promote mental health and wellness within their organizations. Each presenter will give a talk, and then the session will close with an opportunity for the speakers to converse with each other and with attendees. 

Graduate Student Mental Health: What Faculty and Leaders Can Do
Dr. Julie Posselt

Stories and statistics abound about the struggles of graduate education and the risks for wellbeing that it poses to students. In this talk, Professor Posselt will explore cultural and structural barriers to wellbeing among today's generation of graduate students, unique barriers experienced by members of minoritized communities, as well as proactive steps that faculty and other leaders can take to provide support and challenge toxic norms within academia. Posselt will present research completed through a National Academy of Education fellowship on graduate student mental health and sharing findings from two studies: 1) A large-scale national analysis of 20,000 students' views on competition, discrimination, and support in relation to depression and anxiety, and 2) A qualitative study of the ways that doctoral students of color within STEM conceptualize faculty support.

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Dr. Julie P. Martin

Dr. Julie P. Martin is the Director of the University of Georgia’s Engineering Education Transformations Institute and editor in chief of Journal of Women and Minorities in Science and Engineering, where her vision is to create a culture of constructive review for academic publishing. She is well known for her scholarship on diversity, equity, and inclusion, which expands the engineering education community’s capacity to solve persistent challenges in broadening participation by elevating the experiences, assets, and voices of traditionally marginalized groups. Julie is a former National Science Foundation program director (2017-2019) for engineering education. She is a Fellow of the American Society for Engineering Education (ASEE) and a member of ASEE’s Hall of Fame. She loves hosting dinner parties and traveling (especially if there is a beach involved). Julie and her husband have two adorable beagles, Jones and Mattie. For more about Julie’s work, please visit her website at

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Dr. Julie R. Posselt

Julie Posselt is Associate Dean of the Graduate School at the University of Southern California; Associate Professor in the USC Rossier School of Education; Executive Director of the Center for Enrollment, Research, Policy, and Practice; and President of the Sociology of Education Association. Her research examines institutionalized inequities in higher education and organizational efforts to advance equity and wellbeing, with a focus on graduate education and the disciplines. Internationally recognized for her scholarship on admissions and systemic change, she is the author of more than 65 articles and three books, most recently Equity in Science: Representation, Culture, and the Dynamics of Change in Graduate Education (Stanford University Press). She directs two research-practice partnerships: the Equity in Graduate Education Consortium and the NSF-INCLUDES Inclusive Graduate Education Network Research Hub. Posselt received the American Educational Research Association’s Early Career Award as well as the Association for the Study of Higher Education’s Promising Scholar/ Early Career Award. She is a member of the NSF Directorate for STEM Education Advisory Board, among other national and international organizations. She is a past Associate Editor of the Journal of Higher Education and has been a member of three National Academies consensus studies, most recently on Anti-Racism, Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in STEMM Organizations.  Posselt held a postdoctoral fellowship with the National Academy of Education/ Spencer Foundation, and earned her PhD from the University of Michigan.

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