Katie C.

Graduate Recipient

"As you pursue your dreams of higher education, describe what changes you would like to see in the CF community. What steps would you take to initiate these changes?"

I am pursuing a masters in social work with a focus on mental health counseling because of my passion to support individuals with chronic illness and their families. People with CF and other chronic illnesses spend so much time and energy maintaining their physical health, but they usually do not spend as much time maintaining their mental health. I believe that the CF Foundation’s virtual events and CF Peer Connect helps combat the isolation and depression that can be associated with CF; however, I would like to see more ongoing discussions about psychological well-being during clinic visits and how an individual is coping with all the extra stress that comes with living with CF. Yearly depression screenings are a great start, but so many more topics can be explored. Mental health is a key component to overall health and needs to be included within CF clinics so that individuals can live their best lives possible. The conversations and resources should also be expanded to include family members since CF can affect their psychological well-being too. I am currently involved with the Mental Health Advisory Committee through Community Voice at the CF Foundation and am excited about the projects proposed to increase mental health resources for members of the CF community. In addition, with my MSW, I aspire to work with my clinic and local CF Foundation office to develop a more robust mental health component for the CF clinics in St. Louis, Missouri.


Katie C.'s Artwork

Katie C.'s Achievements

  • Brown School at Washington University in St. Louis, Master of Social Work Candidate, Mental Health Concentrator, 2017-Present
  • Practicum Student at Paraquad in the Youth and Family Services. I worked with adolescents with disabilities on independent living skills. January-May 2018
  • Crisis Worker on suicide crisis hotlines at Provident, Inc.’s Life Crisis Services, August 2016-Present. From January 2017-December 2017, I was a Crisis Intervention Specialist. In this role, I supervised volunteers, managed Feeling Kinda Blue, a social networking site for those with mental illness, and worked on the crisis hotlines.
  • Mentor, CF Peer Connect, August 2017-Present
  • CFF Mental Health Advisory Committee, February 2017-Present
  • Washington University Dance Marathon Executive Board Member 2012-2015. Co-Executive Director for the year-round fundraiser in 2014 and Fundraising Director in 2015. During my years as a board member, we raised over $400,000 for Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals of Greater St. Louis
  • Dean’s List, Washington University in St. Louis, Fall 2015
  • Psi Chi, The International Honor Society in Psychology, General Member, 2014-2016
  • Lambda Alpha, The National Anthropology Honorary Society, General Member, 2016
  • Studied abroad in Copenhagen, Denmark, Spring 2015