Keren Jean-Charles is a junior psychology major who is actively involved in student organizations and projects that elevate students’ voices across campus. Keren is the lead mentor at The Intersection and a council member for the Minority-Serving Institution Student Council (MSISC). As a council member, Keren was the executive producer and host of a podcast about social justice issues called “You Gon’ Listen.” They also helped the UNLV Food Pantry receive a $20,000 grant to create a farmers market on campus and helped The Intersection receive a $1,000 grant for their food pantry. Now, Keren mentors students, works with The Raiders to create community-building programs in the city, and is an artist. Keren hopes to become a therapist, community organizer, and activist in the future.
In the meantime, Keren is working as a summer intern under Dr. Renee’ Watson. The internship works on the behalf of the MSISC to create a seamless transition from the spring semester to the fall semester. Keren is responsible for creating programs around Welcome Week and is in the midst of talks with The Intersection and Interdisciplinary, Gender, and Ethnic Studies. As five new members join the MSISC, Keren has also taken charge of mentoring them on how the MSISC works, how to develop their initiatives, and how to pitch their initiative and develop their budgets.
Keren is planning the second annual MSISC fall retreat in August. The retreat will feature team-building exercises, workshops, panels, and most importantly, food. The MSISC hopes that the retreat will bring MSISC members closer together and provide useful skills that are translatable to their work at UNLV and beyond.
As Dr. Watson moves to a new position at Central Michigan University, her podcast, which she co-hosts with Dr. Keith Rogers, will continue. However, an exciting addition Keren and Dr. Tanya Crabb has taken up her mantle to host a few episodes of “Let’s Talk UNLV” in a new way. Dr. Tanya Crabb is a licensed clinical psychologist, first generation college student, Jamaican immigrant, comic book enthusiast, and prior service active duty Marine and Persian Gulf War veteran. Dr. Crabb has a passion for working in diverse communities and has provided counseling services to various populations including incarcerated youth, oncology patients, domestic violence/abuse survivors, active duty military, and veterans. Keren and Dr. Crabb will be using the podcast to raise awareness for mental health throughout the academic year. The new name will be “Let’s Talk UNLV: Student Wellness Take Over.” Keep a lookout for the new episodes airing later this year and other programs from Keren.
Let’s Talk UNLV hosted by Keith Rogers will resume in the fall and with a new co-host to later be determined by his side.