Milissa Kernahan is wise beyond her years.
A senior Natural Science and Psychology double major, Milissa is no stranger to spreading her knowledge throughout the campus of IUP.
She spends her time outside of class as a peer educator at the Center for Health and Well-Being. Her job requires her to plan campaigns around campus that promote healthy lifestyles, as well as provide resources for students in need. She also works with the Haven Project, an on campus program that endorses healthy relationships.
But the most admirable aspect of Milissa can be found in the passion she has for her work. “I love presenting the material to students and creating programs for students to attend,” She says. She also thoroughly enjoys spreading awareness and creating events from which students can benefit.
At the end of January, Milissa lead IUP’s campaign for stalking awareness. This campaign included informing the IUP campus of the reality of stalking with statistics and an informational panel.
Milissa holds this issue dear to her heart. “I chose to lead the stalking awareness campaign because I understand the severity of the issue,” She says. “I wanted to let people know on this campus that this issue is serious. It is not something to joke about.”
Milissa has drawn her strength and ambition from many different role models. “Michelle Obama and Oprah Winfrey are my heroes,” She says. “Michelle Obama is a promoter of healthy eating and she is launching a campaign for low income students to attend college. Oprah Winfrey is my hero because she is a mogul and she is an enormous giver, giving millions to girls in South Africa to pursue an education.”
In all of her extra-curricular chaos, Milissa still has time to manage her school work and offer some sage advice.
“My advice for college students is to remain focused no matter what. You came to college for a purpose: an education. But also remember to have fun.”
As for plans after college, Milissa would love to become a physical therapist, philanthropist, and eventually a professor.
But she isn’t too worried about where she will end up, because she realizes that it is important to take life one day at a time.
“You don’t have to find yourself, but create yourself,” She says. “Live how you want to live and take every opportunity that comes your way.”