Meet Our Youth Advisory Council!

The School-Based Health Alliance’s Youth Advisory Council:


Andre Armour, Atlanta, Georgia
“A person’s a person, no matter how small.”

Andre Armour is a first year member of the Youth Advisory Council and a MBA Student at Albany State University.  He continues to be involved in various clubs and organization on and off campus. One day he would like to have a career that allows him to serve the world. Andre has always had a passion to serve. Growing up he volunteered at numerous locations that focused on the well-being of his community’s youth. He also served as the Student Government Association President during his senior year at Albany State. Through these activities Andre realized that his purpose in life was to serve others in the capacity needed.


Nate Batiste, Baton Rouge, Louisiana
“We are the bridge between adults and kids, and it is our job as health ambassadors to take the terms that adults give and put them into a way our peers can understand.”

Nathaniel Batiste III is a second year member of the Youth Advisory Council and sophomore Biomedical Engineering major at Louisiana Tech University.  He remains involved in his community and his high school’s Student Advisory Council. He dreams of one day becoming a biomedical engineer focused on bionics to help not only his community but others as well. Nathaniel watched many people struggle with health problems, both mentally and physically. Witnessing these challenges first hand, inspired him to become the young man that he is today. He hopes that one day he can inspire others to follow down the same path.


Emma Bittar, Bradenton, Florida
“We need to find some way to ensure that kids across the country are getting the education and resources that they deserve.”

Emma Bittar is a first year member of the Youth Advisory Council and junior at Lakewood Ranch High School. She is heavily involved in her community by participating in activities such as being a Teen Health Educator for the Healthy Teens Coalition of Manatee County and volunteering as an attorney for Manatee County Teen Court. After witnessing the negative effects of a lack of health education and services in her county, Emma advocated for the addition of a School Based Health Center into one of her county’s high schools and now serves on the board working to implement it. She hopes to have a career as an attorney in the future with a focus on human rights.


Audrey Gabriel, Peabody Massachusetts
“It is imperative that every voice be heard, regardless of race, age, background, etc.”

Audrey Gabriel is a first year member of the Youth Advisory Council and a freshman at University of Massachusetts: Amherst, as a Public Health major on a Pre-Med track. Audrey began her work in advocacy at Peabody Veterans Memorial High School, where she was Ex-Officio to her city’s School Committee, and part of her school’s Youth Advisory Council. She has spoken at the Massachusetts State House for 3 consecutive years, advocating for SBHC’s for all students. Through these two councils, she was able to gain experience in advocating for students’ needs and for equity amongst the student body. As an active participant in many extracurriculars and a high-performing student, Audrey was able to connect with a broad audience of students and gain understanding of the many challenges that the youth face today. She hopes to bring her experience and her drive for improvement to the Youth Advisory Council and continue to impact positive change and growth to her community.


Adrian Garcia
“One of the main solutions is simply to educate young students.”

Adrian Garcia is a first year member of the Youth Advisory Council and is currently a senior at Harlingen School of Health Professions. He is currently the Class of 2020 President, holds chair on his school’s Student Advisory Board, and is actively involved in dozens of organizations throughout his community. Adrian has also just recently been appointed to be on the national Teens in the Driver Seat Advisory Board where he will advocate towards student safety while behind the wheel. He is also an active member of his schools National Honor Society. Most notably Adrian served as the Texas Parent Teacher Association student panelist, where he worked alongside state officials such as Texas Representative Talerico to address issues that are currently occurring in their education system. Through PTA Adrian was able to act as the South Texas student panelist and represented dozens of school districts from throughout the state of Texas. As an aspiring future medical professional Adrian is also active in his schools HOSA (Health Occupation Students of America) chapter where he serves as a voting delegate and works with other delegates to endorse local and state officers. Adrian has always had a passion for health, he just recently facilitated a focus group in conjunction with the non-profit organization “United Against Diabetes” where he helped raise awareness towards the effects of diabetes especially in young adults. He is passionate, loves to serve and is ready to embark on this new journey as an Advisory Council member where he will be able to advocate towards the needs of students along with help in the integration and growth of more School Based Health Centers.


Gnogna Fathima Lye, Bronx, New York
“It only takes one person to lead the way for change. If one is all it takes, imagine what more we can do together”.

Gnogna Fathima Lye is a first year member of the Youth Advisory Council and junior at the Bronx High School for Medical Science. She is the captain of the softball team and is involved in extracurricular activities and sports in her school and community. She is a member and a leader of the Montefiore Youth Council and continues to learn and educate others about health and school-based health centers (SBHCs). She attended Advocacy Day twice (February 2016 & 2017) in Albany, NY, to advocate for funding for SBHCs. After attending the School Based Health Alliance Convention in 2016 at Washington, D.C, she realized being part of the Youth Advisory Council would give her a chance to inspire others. She hopes to use this platform to create more engagement with students around the country. She plans to major in nursing and ultimately desires to work in pediatrics, impacting young kids and teens’ lives for the better.

 


Chris Oshana, Novi, Michigan
“We are the future of society and should be acknowledged as such.”

Chris Oshana is a first year member of the Youth Advisory Council and an incoming freshman at the University of Michigan: Ann Arbor. Chris is also involved in The Adolescent Champion Teen Advisory Council (TAC TAC), run through the Adolescent Health Initiative. Through TAC TAC, Chris has developed a deep passion for being a youth voice in work surrounding adolescent health care. He has a passion for the Health Sciences field, and plans to major in Biopsychology, Cognition, and Neuroscience while minoring in Social Class and Inequality Studies. In the future, Chris aspires to become a dentist working to solve health disparities in southeast Michigan.


Baila Salifou, Hagerstown, Maryland
“With more advocacy within the youth population, it stimulates a sense of motivation and familiarity.”

Baila Salifou is a first-year YAC member and a junior at South Hagerstown High School. Being that Baila plans to go to medical school, she volunteers regularly at the local hospital which has relations with the School-Based health center at South High. Baila is also very involved in school being vice president of Spanish National Honor Society, confounder of the Afro-Caribbean dance club, and president of the writing club. Through YAC, Baila hopes to learn more about the importance of advocacy and the possible application of school-based health centers on a global scale. She is currently planning to study public health in college to improve healthcare discrepancies.


Christina Vo, San Jose, California
“Every child deserves the needs to thrive, they shouldn’t have to worry about whether they can access health care services or not! We must promote and take action to improve the health of our youth, while advocating for school-based health center to make sure every child are all healthy and achieving their highest potential.”

Christina Vo is a first year member of the Youth Advisory Council and a  sophomore at Silver Creek High School. She is an individual who is passionate and devoted to serving her community and values social justice. She is involved in many extracurriculars at her school and in her community, such as being President of Pre-Med Club, Red Cross Vice President, and working with Rotary Vietnam Project (a project that works to fight human trafficking). Her passion to improve the health of youth began when she volunteered at her school-based health clinic, Foothill Community Center, where she was able to interact with patients from all backgrounds and walks of life with some having little or no access to health care. Being part of the Youth Advisory Council gave her an opportunity to take initiative and speak out as a leader, but also as well engage with others on the health and social issues impacting our teens today! In the future, she plans to major in Molecular and Cellular Biology and aspires to be a pediatric surgeon, to make sure that every child is not only relieved of their pain, but change their lives for the better!


Brooklyn Waller, Benton, Arkansas
“Creating an environment that the student feels safe in is key in achieving any goal.”

Brooklyn Waller is a junior at Bryant High School in Saline County, Arkansas.  Being highly involved with student leadership organization on campus, she has been elected to serve as the Vice President for her senior year.  Based on her philanthropic efforts, she was invited to attend the Rotary Youth Leadership Awards (RYLA) Conference in April 2019.  This conference is an intensive experience organized by Rotary clubs and school districts with the intent to develop leadership, communication, and problem-solving skills among youth.  Brooklyn was inducted into the National Honor Society based on her initiative, grades, and volunteer service in her community.  She was chosen to represent Bryant High School at Girls State in May 2019, where she will gain knowledge to become a more actively involved citizen in her community.  Brooklyn’s heart for service is exhibited through her engagement with the Bryant High School Partners Club, where she serves as a volunteer at Special Olympics.  Brooklyn is considering a future in the medical or health services field.  She earned the opportunity to observe orthopedic surgery through the Perry Outreach Program, as well as, hands-on lab experience using bone saws and power drills to repair ACL fractures on artificial bones.  Brooklyn obtained her CPR certification and has gained vast knowledge through classes, cadaver labs, and athletic observations, in order to achieve completion in the Sports Medicine program upon graduation.  She is a founding member of the Health Occupations Students of America (HOSA) club at Bryant High School, and has volunteered her time to assist with physicals for more than 1,300 student athletes. Brooklyn is enthusiastic of helping others, and she is willing to serve in any capacity to enrich the overall health of those in both her school and community, focusing especially on childhood and youth related programs.


Youth Advisory Council Leadership


Nicole Carrillo, Youth Development Intern, Omaha, Nebraska
Email Nicole
“We are the RIGHT NOW. What we do now will shape the future, but we must also focus on today. We can change the lives of many today, and again tomorrow.”

Nicole Carrillo is a junior International Business Management major at Southern Adventist University. She has been involved with the Council for four years and serves as its advisor. Nicole has always been very involved in her school and community and has participated in clubs such as the National Honor Society, Student Council, Thrive, and Healthy Huskies. During the summer of 2014, she interned with an organization that supports school-based health centers (SBHCs). It was during this time that she learned about the Youth Advisory Council. After she graduates in 2019, Nicole hopes to pursue her Master in Public Health and continue her work with school-based health centers.

 

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