Senior Profile: Ymani Carmichael '23

Ymani CarmichaelWhat is one of your favorite memories from your time at UMass?
One of my favorite memories from my time at UMass was SoulFest week 2023 and all of the events during the week that allowed the students of color on campus to come together and celebrate our different cultures, music, food and just share in our sense of community that might not always be felt day to day on campus.

How did your experiences in a club, activity, or academic field shape who you are today?
This past spring semester I worked as a Mental Health Counselor at a psychiatric facility for children and adults specifically focussing on those with eating disorders. This experience shaped who I am today by giving me the experience working with children in the psychiatric setting which ultimately led me to my decision to pursue my higher education in the field and serve underprivileged communities of color.

Was there a particular person or class that motivated you during your time at UMass? (Shout Out!)
A class that motivated me during my time at UMass was Abnormal Psych. Going through real case studies of patients and learning about clinical diagnoses really helped me envision the future I wish to pursue. A few people that motivated me and supported me through my time at UMass were my family and close friends as well as my professor and advisor Christina Metevier. I don't know what I would do or where I'd be without their endless love and support. Overall, I wouldn't have been able to accomplish anything without God and my faith in Him through the good times and the bad. 

What advice would you give to incoming UMass students or freshman year you?
Looking back, I would tell freshman year me not to stress the little things so much. I would tell myself to get involved early on and put yourself out there to meet new friends and really find your people. I would tell myself not to be afraid to get out of your comfort zone and try new things. The most important thing I would tell myself is that everything is going to be okay and work out exactly how it is supposed to (Proverbs 3:5-6 & Romans 8:18).

What is your biggest takeaway from UMass?
I learned a lot about myself during my time at UMass. The biggest thing I learned was that even through endless challenges, trials and tribulations, I am able to thrive in any environment when I work hard enough. From learning to navigate a whole new world away from home and stepping into my independence, to going through COVID and adjusting to remote learning while working full time through the pandemic, to countless restless nights where I wasn't sure if I was going to make it through, I was able to persevere and make it to where I am today. I know now that I can make it through anything.

What is next for you?
I am currently applying to graduate programs in the field of clinical mental health counseling in hopes of starting in the fall. Long term, I plan on pursuing a PsyD in clinical psychology with a concentration in child and family psychology. I hope to provide psychiatric counseling to children and families especially in underprivileged and low income communities of color.