2022 Rose Queen Nadia Chan and her court have endured four months of intensity like no high school senior has ever experienced.
The Queen and her court have made more than 144 public appearances in the past few months. Add to all that the rigors of the final year of high school and the college application process.
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This 2022 court was the first to receive one-on-one coaching from a mental health clinician, courtesy of Pasadena-based nonprofit Sycamores, a partner of the Tournament of Roses Association.
Jaeda Walden, who was watching Monday’s 134th Rose Parade from the low bleachers with four other members of the 2022 Rose Court, said the outsider’s perspective really helped.
Eva Feldman agreed.
“It’s a lot at once,” Feldman said of his experience at court.
And to manage that onslaught of responsibility, the Tournament of Roses enlisted Sycamores, a non-profit organization whose primary mission is to provide and advocate for mental health services.
“Wellness services are important,” said Sycamores Chief Advance Officer Shannon Boult. Tournament officials asked them for help, she said.
The program is easy. A Sycamores female clinician is paired with a Royal Court member. That first year of hers was during the pandemic, but the sessions were online. Girls received as many sessions as needed to manage their commitments and concerns.
Marisa Perez Martin, a licensed marriage and family therapist at Sycamore, paired up with last year’s Queen, Chong.
In addition to helping her juggle everything from court appointments, attending classes, studying, and applying to college, she said there was another important thing that was highlighted in the session. rice field.
“At the same time, it was important to remember that we were having this incredible experience,” said Perez Martin.
Chan, who watched Monday’s parade from Spain attending a debate tournament at Stanford University, said Perez Martin was incredibly kind and receptive. The clinician uniquely helped Chung balance the challenging course load and the on-court responsibilities.
“My clinician didn’t tell me what to do,” Chung said. “She asked questions that encouraged me to make my own decisions.”
In this way, Chung, now a freshman in college, developed her decision-making skills and taught her to “don’t look at decision-making in such a binary way.”
For example, Chung was stressed about whether to use AP Calculus during his reign. Perez-Martin puts her point of view: her life will not change.
Chung found an even better alternative. She chose not to take AP classes, but instead she did an independent research project in calculus.
According to Perez-Martin, much of the counseling advises girls to stay in the moment.
“Really just stay in the present and focus on it,” said Perez Martin.
Maintaining a balancing act between courts, schools, family and friends has not always been easy, Mr Chung said. The normally talkative Chung fell silent for seconds when she was asked what was hard for her during the run-up to last January 1.
“The hardest part was not ignoring or neglecting the activities and people that mattered most to me.”
In fact, Perez-Martin says Chung is really thoughtful and a natural communicator. The former queen wrote notes to teachers and school counselors to help her stay connected.
“Nadia is very driven,” she said. She said, “She has her part of using some of the accommodations, but she still does her best in everything she does.”
And according to Perez-Martin, people can easily lose communication when they’re stressed.
With mental health awareness growing across the country, it is important that the Tournament of Roses recognizes the need and puts in place a program, especially for young people who have endured years of isolation and online education. Yes, says Perez-Martin.
“It’s definitely innovative and forward-thinking,” she said of the new program.
The stigma against seeking mental health services, especially for young people, is beginning to fade, and Perez-Martin believes the school system has paved the way.
Young people are increasingly accessing mental health and social services directly on school campuses, and peer support groups are emerging.
For example, at South Hills High School in West Covina, she said, administrators have implemented QR codes that students can scan. Code connects you directly with peers you can talk to about your problem. Someone else can be brought in if adult or professional intervention is required.
For Quinn Young, Queen of the Rose of 2009, the responsibility fell on her and her family to make sure that schoolwork and other obligations were met. She said having a wellness coach would really help her.
“I think it would be helpful to have someone as an intermediary between my teacher and Rose Court,” said Young. “It was up to me to keep up with school and make sure I did all the assignments, which was difficult at times.”
Like many other court members, his experience at Rose was one of growth for Young.
“It gave me confidence, met a lot of new people, and prepared me for adulthood,” said Young, who is now a talent agent at The Wall Group after attending Lehigh University.
“It made me a more social, charitable and mature person,” Young said of her time in the royal family.
The former Queen said she wished mental health resources had been made available more than a decade ago for her and her court.
“You can imagine how hard it has been for members of the court over the years,” Young said. “It’s great to have someone you can talk to if you need it.”
For Chung and her court, discussing issues was a constant occurrence between young women. They all became instant friends, she said, and that was one of the best parts of the experience.
“On days when one of us wasn’t feeling well, we were all happy to talk to each other,” Chung said. she added.
“I never felt like I was talking to a stranger,” Chong said in her courtroom. “Everything felt like home.”
Chung and her court still text each other in group threads.
When five members of the 2022 Court saw their predecessor’s “Turn the Corner” at the 134th Annual Rose Parade, Feldman reminisced about his time and the pressures he felt.
“The court is your whole life for those four months,” Feldman said. “It was easy to get overwhelmed.”
Former Queen Young expressed a similar opinion.
“These girls have been working non-stop for months, and it’s no wonder they’re overwhelmed,” Young said.
What about mental health?
“Don’t be prejudiced,” said Young.