Four female students leaning back against a wall

RISE | OMSE Learning Community 


RISE is a learning community that aims to protect and support undergraduate and graduate women of color (WOC) at Wayne State University, as they experience attending a Predominantly White Institution (PWI). RISE provides a safe space for self-identified WOC to develop Leadership, Scholarship, Sisterhood, and deeper Self-Actualization. Through programming, we create a community that focuses on identity development, promotes self-reflection, and embraces intersectionality while celebrating the diversity that influences our lives. RISE is open to any WSU student! 
  • RISE builds Sisterhood by creating a community that allows us to establish solidarity through celebration, affirmation, and conversation.
  • RISE builds Scholarship by empowering women to pursue their academic, personal and professional development opportunities both inside and outside of class.
  • RISE builds Self- Actualization through a community of empowerment and support through open dialogue, reflection, and validation.
  • RISE builds Leadership by creating opportunities and spaces for WOC to continue to enhance their leadership potential.

Meet our Peer Mentors 

Ja'Lea Echols (she/her)

Ja'Lea Echols is a student at Wayne State University studying Public Health with a minor in Global Health and Social Medicine. She plans to continue her education at Wayne State with a Masters in Public Health. Her passion in Public Health stemmed from wanting to build empathy for a group of people that aren't often afforded the luxury of compassionate healthcare. Prior to becoming a RISE mentor, Ja'Lea was a RISE mentee for two semesters, leading as the most active member in the 2021-22 year. In her free time, Ja'Lea likes to go to concerts, help her community, and spends time with her friends and family. Ja'Lea's vision for RISE is to be a learning community that supports any and all womxn of color at WSU, allowing them to come together and be themselves.


Mikayla GaydenMikayla Gayden (she/her)

Mikayla Gayden is a student at Wayne State University studying Film. Her passion in Film stemmed from her upbringing in a family of creators, which now allows her to express her thoughts and inform people about certain societal issues. Prior to becoming a RISE mentor, Mikayla was a RISE mentee for two semesters, becoming one of the most active participants. Apart from school, Mikayla enjoys spending time with family and friends, traveling, shopping and even spending some time alone! Mikayla's vision for the RISE learning community is to create a space for WOC to feel confident and providing them all the resources they need to do that.



Connect with us!

Instagram @rise.wsu
Email: OMSE@wayne.edu
RISE Spotify Playlist
For an empowering playlist that will make you feel as great as you are, join the RISE spotify playlist!
RISE Spotify Playlist
If you are interested in learning more about RISE learning community and if they would provide the experiences you're looking for, please complete our interest form below.
LC Interest Form