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Staff Spotlight: Karen Fragoso

I’ve been obsessed with mental health since I was 13 years old. Coincidentally, I knew what I wanted to do career wise at around that same time. Fast forward to my freshman year of college, I spent hours looking for an internship because I wanted to get ahead of everyone my age. When you’re 19 years old, everyone says you’re too young to be pursuing an internship. But Lauren, CEO of Picking Me Foundation didn’t think that. When I started the internship, I wasn’t quite sure what I was getting myself into. I was ecstatic because I’d be advocating for mental health, something I am deeply passionate about. Yet, I was nervous. I thought I’d be the stereotypical intern who did coffee runs and busy work. Not to mention, I’d be the youngest person working there. That’s extremely intimidating. It wasn’t until the “Mental (W)illness” event that I realized that I belong here. Lauren was the kind of person who could be your friend as well as your mentor. She provided a welcoming and ambitious environment that made coming in so much fun. Additionally, the other interns welcomed me and we got along instantaneously, which isn’t usual for me when people are a few years older. And that’s the thing about Picking Me, it’s not average. It’s different and it proves different is good and different succeeds. It’s shown me how to be a hard worker, how to have fun, and how to advocate for something you’ve been so passionate about.