Mental Health System Reform Scholarship Winners

2022 The Mental Health System Reform Scholarship Winner: Juliette Licon

I’m from San Antonio, Texas, and moved to Austin afterwards where I earned my Bachelor of Science and Arts degree in Biology at The University of Texas at Austin in 2020 and did research in how different cultures globally affect the psychology of how children learn. Originally after my undergraduate, I planned to go straight into medicine. However, it became quickly apparent that good medicine in the US requires more than treating one individual patient at a time. This led me to enroll in the School of Public Health at The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston, where I’m now pursuing a Master’s degree in Community Health Practice and a minor in Leadership Practices. When I’m not in school, I’m either baking or playing ultimate frisbee. That is why I’m learning how to best promote and provide access to behavioral health care, especially to children, the future of the world.
Reaction to Winning the Scholarship 
I was immediately ecstatic when I learned I won the scholarship. I reached out to everyone who proofread my multiple drafts of the essay, thanking them for their help. I certainly felt accomplished, but then it sunk in that another person believed in my vision for creating a better mental healthcare system in the United States. The status of our mental healthcare system can appear a daunting project to work on, but it’s moments like these that remind me that there is real support and commitment for changing how this nation deals with mental health, and together we can help the people of today, and our generations to come.

2021 The Mental Health System Reform Scholarship Winner: Aysa Klocke

Congratulations to Aysa Klocke for being named our 2021 The Mental Health System Reform Scholarship winner! We were impressed with Aysa’s essay submission and we’re excited to support Aysa in her continued education with this $1,000 scholarship.

“I am incredibly grateful to be receiving the Mental Health System Reform Scholarship from Dayne Philips Attorney at Law. This financial support will help me with the expensive cost of law school tuition. Considering I will be a public interest lawyer, it will be hard to pay off my student loans. Anything to lift that burden is a relief! That’s why getting this financial support is a privilege.

Law school will give me the opportunity to engage in meaningful prison reform work. I hope to learn how to defend both prisoners’ and victims’ rights. By learning how the law works, I will know how to change it. I think that the criminal justice system needs to be more equitable and less reliant on incarceration. There are too many incarcerated people that simply need mental health services, counseling, and/or drug treatment. Prison is not the right place for this. I think through the law, the criminal justice system can be transformed.

I am thankful to Dayne Philips for investing in my future. This scholarship will support me in my legal education and future career. Thank you for your generosity!”

2020 The Mental Health System Reform Scholarship Winner: Dennis Howard


My name is Dennis Howard and I am from Albany, NY. I attend Shaker High School and have a few months left of senior year before heading off to college. I plan on following a Pre-Med track while in college, with the goal of going to medical school and becoming a physician. Currently, I spend most of my time outside of school doing research at Albany Medical College, studying a recently discovered protein. I love nature and spend most of what free time I have outdoors, all year round. I enjoy cross country skiing in the winter time, hiking in the spring and in the fall, and cycling during the summer months.

Reaction to Winning the Scholarship 

I am very grateful that I have been chosen as the Dayne Phillips Mental Health System Scholarship recipient. It truly means a lot to me, as I believe everyone should know about the present condition of our mental health system here in the United States. I am very passionate about public health policy and hope that through our collective efforts, we will be able to reform our flawed mental health system. This scholarship will give me the opportunity to pursue my dreams of helping others as a physician. It is a long, winding, and costly journey, and this scholarship will be able to relieve at least part of the heavy financial burden. Once again, a huge thank you to Dayne Phillips for giving me the opportunity to voice my opinions! Thank you!

Learn More About The Mental Health System Reform Scholarship

Dayne Phillips Attorney at Law started The Mental Health System Reform Scholarship to help encourage students to think about the current mental health system in the U.S. and what can be done to improve it. With more focus being on mental health in recent years, our firm wanted to help students think about practical ways to tackle this issue. This scholarship allowed us a chance to help students pay for their further education while giving them a chance to share their thoughts and think through the realities of our current mental health system and where there is room for improvement. To learn more about this scholarship, visit our Mental Health System Reform Scholarship page.