How research into mental health benefits everyone

Tune into your student wellbeing this Mental Health Month 

Get to know Connie, a Master of Brain and Mind Sciences student who's passionate about supporting young people with brain and mind disorders.

An image of connie Janiszewski

Connie Janiszewski 

Why did you decide to enroll in a Master of Brain and Mind Sciences?

I enrolled in a Master of Brain and Mind Sciences to not only advance my understanding of fundamental neuroscience and its clinical applications, but to help improve the quality of life of those suffering from brain and mind disorders, whether that be in a laboratory, clinic, or through mental health care.

What do you find most rewarding about your research?

I am currently investigating the mental health of young people with co-occurring autism and gender-diversity, by identifying themes from their perspective and lived experiences, to determine how mental health services, such as headspace, should provide support. It has been an incredible experience to collaborate with autistic and gender-diverse youth, and to include their voices in the development of guidelines that aim to benefit them. 

What do you hope to do once you have finished your Master of Brain and Mind Sciences?

I hope to continue to be involved in various research projects at headspace Camperdown, where I am currently tracking a cohort of patients and measuring outcomes to improve demand management, as well as investigating the mental health of autistic and gender-diverse youth, as part of my degree. I would also like to pursue a Doctor of Philosophy in the future, and prepare a substantial piece of research that again, helps improve the quality of life of those suffering from brain and mind disorders.

Why are social connections so integral to our mental health?

Social connectedness is crucial to our mental health. Research has confirmed that social connectedness improves quality of life across aspects of physical health, social and emotional well-being, and of course, everyday functioning. 

Could you share some tips about being more socially connected?

It is important that you are proactive and make an effort to connect with the people around you, whether that be your family, friends from school or university, work colleagues, or neighbours. It is also important that you prioritise social connections in your schedule and are present for these; focus on the connections that make you feel good about yourself, and support you, particularly during challenging times.

17 October 2022