UM - Miller School of Medicine University of Miami - Miller School of Medicine

Peer Support Network

Peer Support Network

What is the Peer Support Network at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine?

The Peer Support Network is a group of trained medical students (peer support navigators) that are eager to serve as advocates for their peers. The peer support navigators aim to provide support to students that may be experiencing hardships during their time in medical school (academic, interpersonal conflicts, mental/physical health, financial, etc). They are passionate about providing a listening ear, offering advice based on similar experiences, and increasing awareness of the campus resources that are available to students. Peer support navigators are dedicated to fostering an on-campus environment centered around wellness, support, and accessibility.

Interested in becoming a peer support navigator?

Are you seen as a leader or mentor among your peers? Do you have a passion for helping other students that are having a hard time? Empathy, compassion, and dedication are additional qualities that might make you the perfect candidate to join the team. We are currently accepting peer support navigator applications for the 2019-2020 academic school year. You can apply at the link below. (You will receive an email with additional information regarding information sessions and training)

Going through a difficult time and want to talk to a peer support specialist?

Peer support navigators are ready to offer support and provide referrals to on-campus resources that may be useful for you. Fill out the form below and one of our team members will get back to you soon (no later than 24 hours). Remember everything you tell us is confidential. See the list of biographies for the peer navigators below.

Qualtrics Form for Students Seeking Support from Peer Support Navigator (will create and place here)

Meet the UMED Peer Support Navigators (Student bio information to come soon!)

Michelle Miller, MS3 MD Candidate
I’m originally from Chicago but moved to Miami to escape the cold and am now a MS3 here at Miller! I plan to pursue psychiatry and am passionate about increasing access to mental health care, so I was excited to hear about the Peer Navigator Program raising awareness of all the great resources we have on and off campus. I also love that the Peer Support Network helps emphasize the idea that medical students can and should work together as a team to support each other so that medical school doesn’t have to be as competitive and stressful as it can sometimes feel.

Sara Jones, MS2 MD Candidate
Sara Jones
My name is SJ and I’m an MS2 from Tulsa, Oklahoma. I graduated from Washington and Lee University in 2018 with a degree in anthropology and poverty studies. I became a peer support navigator because I entered eating disorder recovery during my MS1 year and am passionate about helping medical students facing similar struggles.

Vincent Volante, MS2 MD Candidate
Vincent Volante
Vince was born and raised in the Philippines. He finds identity and strength in his relationship with God. Having had difficulties in transitioning to medical school, and continuing to face his share of mental health challenges, Vince wants to impart courage and wisdom on his peers through the Peer Support Network. Besides doing his duty to point peers to available resources, Vince also wants to remind them that the sun always comes after the rain, and that although everyday is a battle, choosing joy is always an option.

Hope Hua, MS2 MD Candidate
Hi! My name is Hope and I’m from St. Louis, MO. I’ve had my fair share of academic difficulties since starting medical school along with the emotional effects that result from it. Mental health is something that is not openly discussed and more people struggle than we know. I became a peer support navigator because I want to be there for those bold enough to reach out for help and to share my own experience.

Jennifer Ferrante, MS3 MD Candidate
Hi, I’m Jen, and I’m a third year medical student. I was born in Florida, but grew up in Long Beach, NY. I graduated from the University of Miami with a double major in Neuroscience and English, and minors in Chemistry and Spanish. In my free time I love reading, writing, trying new restaurants, and playing with my pet tortoises! I am excited and honored to be serving as a Peer Support Navigator. Mental health has always been important to me, and has become even more of a focus of mine in medical school. I would be more than happy to share my own experiences of overcoming personal and academic challenges in medical school, and look forward to being a source of support.

Nareka Trewick, MS2 MD Candidate
I was originally born in Kingston, Jamaica and I moved to the United States when I was 4 years old. After growing up in Coral Springs, Florida, I attended the University of Miami for undergrad where I majored in Public Health and Psychology and then completed a Master’s degree at Florida Atlantic University. My transition to medical school was not easy and I hope to use this opportunity to empower fellow students to use our medical school’s resources, knowing firsthand how helpful they can be.

Additional Information about the program:

What are the benefits of being a peer support navigator?

Many students are overwhelmed with the resources available on campus. On the other hand, some students are intimidated by the idea of reaching out to members of the medical administration, although faculty and staff at Miller are readily available to support them. As a peer support navigator, you are a valuable asset to both students and the administration. By becoming a peer support navigator, you enhance the overall wellbeing of medical students going through difficult times. You also play a role in ensuring that the principles of trust, acceptance, and support are embedded within campus culture

What are requirements and expectations of being a peer support team member?

You must attend a Mental Health First Aid Workshop (there will be more than one offered during the academic year). You are also required to commit at least 2-10 hours of being on call per month. During months when your schedule may get very busy, you will have the option to decrease the the amount of time you are on call.

On Campus Resources by Category:

Counseling and Mental Health Services

Interpersonal and Professional Conflict Services

Academic Enrichment Services