Reflections on the UCLA Tragedy & Mental Health

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Juliette Virzi is a former member of Active Minds at UCLA and the Active Minds Student Advisory Committee.

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When I woke up yesterday morning, I didn’t expect to begin the day in my living room, huddled around with six fellow students watching live news coverage of a shooting at my school, praying for the safety of our friends on lockdown on campus.

I couldn’t fully comprehend what was happening when I received the Bruin Alert text:  “Shooting at Engineering 4. Go to secure location and deny entry (lockdown) now!”

From that point on, I joined the UCLA community in trying to navigate far-fetched rumors about what was actually happening, ranging from reports of multiple shooters, an inaccurate number of victims and injuries, and what areas of campus were most vulnerable. After two tense hours of being glued to the TV, we found out that what was initially called an active shooter situation was actually a murder-suicide. Continue Reading

Eating Disorders Awareness Week: A Letter to My Best Friend’s Professor

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This post was originally published in The Daily Bruin, UCLA’s student newspaper.

Dear My Best Friend’s Professor,

I wanted to start off by letting you know that I think you are amazing. I don’t know the extent of what you do here at UCLA, but I do know that in order to have reached your esteemed position at this university, you have done incredible research and have played a huge part in shaping the minds of tomorrow. For these things, I thank you.

I’m writing to you because I didn’t feel I could adequately express my concerns on the quarterly evaluation form. As you know, your student (my best friend) has been in treatment for her mental health-related difficulties. And as you are well aware, this has taken a toll on her class performance.

My best friend was diagnosed with anorexia this quarter. Her condition steadily worsened. Anorexia was killing her. She should have been hospitalized on the spot.

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