Natalie Aileen Larez


Students spend most of their time in school systems, and at the same time, they don’t exist in a vacuum. They navigate multiple environments, such as their home, juvenile detention centers, foster care systems, health care systems, etc. Natalie is interested in examining how publicly funded institutions support the educational, physical, and mental health care needs of youth who have experienced significant childhood trauma. How can our multiple systems support the educational success of youth who have experienced trauma? Specifically, Natalie wants to examine better avenues in creating access for mental health services for minoritized, Spanish-speaking, under-resourced, and/or low-income communities. Natalie believes interdisciplinary and cross-sector collaboration among policymakers, academics, and communities is essential in advancing the overall health of communities that have inequitable access to education, medical care, and mental health services.

Natalie is coming from a small rural town in Arizona on the U.S.-Mexico border. Her hometown is low-resourced and holds rich bi-cultural ties, both of which provide her with a unique perspective and deep dedication to create equitable systems for communities like her own.


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