Dina made the move to Denver from Long Island, New York in August of 2020 to pursue a Master’s of Public Health degree at the Colorado School of Public Health. During her undergraduate years at the University at Buffalo, Dina worked on various maternal and child health research projects, as well as working hands-on as an EMT. Her passion for technology in the field of health sciences research grew from her work with a digital media company, who produced virtual reality content for patient-centered applications.  

After connecting with a staff member at the National Mental Health Innovation Center, Dina knew that her passion for technology and research would thrive at the Center. At NMHIC, Dina works closely with research staff members across various projects collecting and analyzing data, as well as collaborating on reports and publications. In her free time, you can find her rollerblading, rock climbing, skiing, camping, hiking, and exploring Colorado. 


Janhavi Kulkarni is a rising senior at Grandview High School. As a high school student, she is involved in extracurricular activities that support the mental health community. She is able to work with an organization that has a mission to transform the lives of adolescents struggling with mental health. The organization establishes clubs in high schools in order to bring a safe space to discuss struggles or experiences with mental health. Through the light of the pandemic, Janhavi realized she can become trauma-informed and continues to work in fields relating to psychoeducation and hotlines. Her passions are in finding new ways to effectively help adolescents deal with stressors, as well as using new advanced technology in an effective way that can better everyone's well-being. As Janhavi is a Colorado native, in her free time she enjoys summiting mountains, walking her dogs at the dog park, and spending time with her family. 

Katrina Messner is a high school student who will be graduating in 2022. For the summer of 2021, she will be working as an intern conducting research and working alongside the professionals at the National Mental Health Innovation Center (NMHIC). Katrina works in efforts to prevent youth suicide across the state. She participates in multiple projects and events each year to raise awareness for the cause. 

Katrina also has experience with adolescents both in a teaching environment and a medical environment. This experience and her passion for research fueled her interest in pursuing a career in neuroscience focusing on the underlying causes of mental illness, as well as potential treatments. At NMHIC, Katrina will work with other staff members to complete various projects and conduct research. In her free time, Katrina enjoys golfing, baking, cooking, and figure skating. 

Alex is a passionate and driven young student currently studying pre-med psychology at the University of Colorado Denver. Alex has a genuine love for learning and the sciences. He is working to get into medical school to study psychiatry to help push the field in new, innovative directions. Making sure care is the best it can be and can reach as many people as possible. NHMIC just seemed like a perfect fit for him because of this! Born and raised in North Carolina Alex has followed a strange and winding road to end up here today. Alex has been a hardcore gamer all his life, starting playing at a young age, and when he had to leave the academic world to focus on personal well-being he became a professional Magic: the Gathering player, traveling internationally to compete in tournaments. After a year and a half of competing, Alex returned to the academic world to pursue a career in psychology. Alex has worked on a genuine smorgasbord of projects over the years including; running his high school's LGBT+ club for multiple years, directing a play, playing a wide variety of instruments, running a chatroom to help young people manage their mental health and connect with others, and of course, competing in many gaming tournaments.

Zach assists in work related to the Tech Innovation Network (TIN) as well as tasks related to social outreach, social platform management, and assistive intern onboarding. Specific to his work, Zach has created and analyzed competitive analyses for varying community sites, assessed various technology platforms, and conducted scans for both virtual reality (VR) hardware and software. He also assists in research-based projects, helping gather preliminary research data. Zach is currently a senior at the University of Washington studying psychology with a minor in environmental studies. He is passionate about his studies and the various applications of psychological, behavioral, and cognitive therapies. Zach hopes to one day become a child therapist, specializing in the use of therapeutic art techniques. In his free time, Zach enjoys dancing, listening to an array of music genres, hiking, and playing tennis. 

What Our Previous Interns Are Saying 

My internship experience at NMHIC was excellent! The project and tasks I was assigned allowed me to both use the tools and skills I already had, as well as start to develop areas I wasn't quite familiar with. Moreover, both my supervisors and coworkers were incredibly polite, understanding, and helpful! If I ever felt lost or confused about what to do next I knew I could just ask for help. I feel I grew tremendously both academically and as a person over the course of my internship and I would definitely recommend it to anyone interested.