Pacific Edge Magazine Giving Back to the Community Issue features Dr. Elsa Lee

Pacific Edge Magazine Giving Back to the Community Issue features Dr. Elsa Lee

Pacific Edge Magazine featured Dr. Elsa Lee in their Giving Back to the Community issue for Q2 2023.

Click here to read the article.

The article is also below.

Dr. Elsa Lee - Assets School

How do you give back to the community? 

I try to give back to the community in several ways as I wear a number of hats. As a neuropsychologist, I regularly devote my time to conducting free mental health and brain health workshops for community members, parents, and caregivers. I have spoken in public schools, public libraries, community organizations, and churches. The goal is to psychoeducate community members on mental health issues and help people gain awareness and knowledge on topics such as depression, anxiety, parenting, learning differences, and cognitive health. 

As a parent, I volunteer at my children’s schools at fundraising and class events. One of my proudest mom achievements was to serve as the PTA president and on school leadership teams at one of my child’s elementary and middle schools while having a full-time job working 60 hours a week. I also served in churches playing the piano and leading worship services for a number of years. 

What does giving back mean to you? 

Giving back means that I get to engage in activities or initiating projects that contribute to the well-being and improvement of the community that I am a part of. As a psychologist, my professional role gives me the privilege and convenient access to helping people on a daily, or even hourly basis. As a community member, giving back means I have the honor of sharing my time, gifts, and resources with those who can benefit from being encouraged and uplifted by one another. 

What are some of the biggest challenges facing your industry? 

The field of mental health faces a number of challenges that impact individuals, communities, and our healthcare system as a whole. One of the biggest, longstanding challenges I have experienced is the unequal access to mental health services. Accessing treatment is a challenge particularly for those who are marginalized because of socioeconomic reasons and racial-cultural disparities. Barriers can include limited access to mental health providers, long wait times, costs, or simply a lack of awareness of what services are available. 

Another challenge pertains to the Covid-19 pandemic and has been witnessed first-hand at my workplace. At Assets, which is a private school that specializes in educating children with learning differences, I conduct psychoeducational assessments for students of all ages in the community. A number of students I evaluated have been impacted psychologically, socially, and academically as a result of Covid. Disruptions in classroom instruction have resulted in learning loss and achievement gaps for some students. The pandemic has also taken a toll on children’s mental health. The absence of regular routines and social interactions during those two years had led to more reported cases of heightened stress, anxiety, and depression. 

What has been the biggest sacrifice you have made for your career? 

I will not necessarily say I have made a “sacrifice” for my career as in giving up one for the other, because my goal has always been to strike a workable, sustainable balance between various aspects of life including family and social relationships as well as, of course, my professional advancement. That said, attempting to “have it all” requires making intentional and thoughtful decisions. Setting boundaries, knowing my limits, and delineating priorities to find that happy medium is what seems to work best. In my work with patients, I often allude to this idea of “good enough.” We want to shoot for the best and invest every bit of effort to make it to the top but be flexible enough to accept that being good enough is indeed good enough. This mindset can release us from chronic stress and unrealistic expectations that can lead to burnout. 

What has been the biggest reward? 

The biggest reward for me as a mental health professional is to see patients function better and learn new, healthy ways of managing all sorts of life challenges. Nothing makes me feel happier and more content as a psychologist than to see my patients walking out of my office being more empowered to confront their fears, having more awareness of their strengths and weaknesses, and building hope in the present and future. When I work with families, helping the parents understand their children’s struggles and genuinely accepting them for who they are makes me feel tremendously fulfilled. Getting through to parents helps build a stronger connection within the family and creates a nurturing environment to help the children thrive. These meaningful moments are what carry me through long days and heavy caseloads. 



Victories in Chess and Sports

Assets School secures back-to-back wins in chess. We have good news in esports, judo, golf, and CSAL Girls Basketball.

The Wonderful Wizard of Oz poster

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The Spirit Of Giving For Our Keiki

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College Visits Help Navigate Transitions

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Adventures In Geometry In Fifth And Sixth Grade

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Embarking on a Journey of Learning

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Mentorships Launch at High School

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US Patent Director Kathi Vidal Tours Assets School

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Valedictorian Noa '23 on KHON2's Way 2 Go! segment May 23, 2023

Our Valedictorian Noa '23 was on the KHON2 Way 2 Go segment on the 4 p.m. newscast that aired on Tuesday, May 23, 2023.

Senior presents at Senior Showcase Friday, May 12

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MidWeek Hot Shots 5-3-2023

MidWeek newspaper featured Central Pacific Bank and Assets School in the Hot Shots section on May 3.

Illumination Gala is April 15

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Love is in the Air

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Summer School Registration Begins

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Assets School logo

On behalf of our Head of School Ryan Masa, Assistant Head of School and Admissions Director Sandi Tadaki, and Vice President of Institutional Advancement Linda Jameson Myers, we thank you for supporting our Annual Fund which supports Tuition Assistance, the Brace Library, Robotics, Athletics, and the School's Greatest Needs

This Family Appreciates Your Support

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A Giving Heart Educates A Grateful Heart

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High School Mentorship and Rocketry Programs Excell

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Assets Launches its First Middle School Robotics Team

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Ryan and Kanoe Gibson

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Announcing Assets' TV Show

Assets is producing a one-hour television show: “Assets School-Celebrating 65 Years of Transforming Lives.” 

Mark your calendars for Wednesday, April 14th at 8 p.m. on K5, Saturday, April 17th at 6 p.m. on KGMB-TV (CBS) and Sunday, April 18th at 4 p.m. on KHNL-TV (NBC).

Assets School Donates 1,254 Pounds of Food

Assets School's community of #GreatMinds collected 1,254 pounds of food and $300, which was donated to the Hawaii Foodbank for Assets School's first Giving Back Tuesday.

Message from Hawaiian Studies Teacher Mele-Aina Wood

Hawaiian Studies teacher Mele-Aina Wood shares how important it is to pay it forward because someday those children, who have benefitted from your generosity, will be the ones giving back:

Robot-assisted Graduation 2020

Special times called for special measures. Thanks to Assets' Robotics Coach, Peter Han, our #greatminds had one of the most unique graduation ceremonies that included a Diploma Robot!

Highway Overhead Shot at Night

Research suggests that because of the freedom we had growing up, which included the freedom to do some foolish things that necessitated taking responsibility for our actions, we became capable problem solvers and resilient individuals.