There were almost 70,000 fatal drug overdoses by the end of 2017, according to the National Center for Health Statistics. Each one of those deaths was uniquely tragic — and Stephanie Reifman wants…their stories to be heard. Stephanie first started researching the opioid crisis in 2013, after she heard about Cory Monteith’s overdose. Monteith was on the TV show Glee; he played Finn Hudson, a fun-loving jock who worries he’ll lose his cool factor when he tries out for the glee club. Off-screen, however, Monteith was facing… >> Read More
As a young teen, Genevieve Liu lived on the south side of Chicago and treasured the sound of leaves crunching underfoot in the fall, the smell of fresh-made pizza, and singing “Leaving on a Jet…Plane” with her dad, a celebrated pediatric surgeon. But on August 5, 2012, everything that Genevieve knew and trusted was shattered as she witnessed her father drown in Lake Michigan. He was heroically attempting to save two boys who’d been pulled in by the undertow. Genevieve’s family and community were in shock. As they tried… >> Read More
Yardena Gerwin, 18, has lived on the Upper West Side of Manhattan for most of her life. She’s a savvy New Yorker who knows where to get the saltiest pretzel and the best way to get discount tickets…to a Broadway show. But when Yardena was 15, she suddenly lost the ability to speak, write, or even think clearly. She was hospitalized for almost two weeks. The doctors, however, couldn’t find anything clinically wrong with her — and a team of male psychiatrists decided she was suffering from something “psychological.” Yardena and her… >> Read More
It was a sunny weekend afternoon, and Daniel Zahn - aged 19 at the time - didn’t need to be inside studying. But, as he looked at the heads bowed in concentration and heard the tapping of computer…keyboards, he knew he was right where he belonged. A little over a year ago, Daniel co-launched F.O.R.M Consulting, which stands for Future Opportunities Reached by Mentorship. Through F.O.R.M., Daniel conducts essay-writing seminars and pairs college student-mentors with prospective students from underserved communities. Mentees get feedback on their writing and learn about scholarship opportunities. So… >> Read More
Even before #MeToo became a viral hashtag, Minnah Stein — aged 14 at the time — was working to educate and empower younger generations about sexual assault and harassment.
As she says,…“sexual assault and harassment don’t start in the workplace or in college. They begin much earlier. K-12 schools are breeding grounds for harassment and assault, and I want to stop this problem at the source.” After hearing a report on NPR that 1 in 5 girls will be sexually assaulted while in college (as will… >> Read More