I conducted meaningful, innovative research aimed at serving both clinicians and adults with severe mental illness

Blake K. Parrish
iPREP Academic Fellow

Working with the ACT Center of Indiana has been the single most enriching experience as a young professional. Having spent the last two years among collaborators, students, and friends of the ACT Center, I gained invaluable skills and formed fond memories that I will truly cherish far into the future.

As a junior at IUPUI, Dr. Michelle Salyers saw my potential as an inquisitive researcher in our first mentoring meeting. She worked closely with me to help identify my goals and develop a sense of direction as an aspiring scientist. Before I knew it, she swept me away into a whirlwind of exciting opportunities. I went from feeling utterly lost (as most undergraduates do) to conducting and contributing to meaningful, innovative research aimed at serving adults with severe mental illnesses and their clinicians alike.

Now, headed into five arduous years of study in a Ph.D. program, I look back and reflect upon the tremendous amount of support I received and the tools for success that were so generously given to me. Graduate students personally taught me advanced research methods. Faculty sought funding to send me to conferences. Clients gave me new perspective. Coworkers sought to develop meaningful friendships, and others have done much more.

I undoubtedly would not be nearly as prepared to succeed in a doctoral program, let alone consider the possibility of beginning one, if I hadn’t been welcomed into the company of professionals as enthusiastic about helping others as the ACT Center team.