For Mental Health Awareness Week, PhD student Elen Ghassempoory talks about her experience with the University’s support services that she accessed through struggling with anxiety.
"I’ve accessed a fair few of the support services since joining the University. I started out booking a wellbeing appointment as I was struggling with my anxiety. After that, I began to engage with the counselling service. It helped with managing and exploring my anxiety. It also helped me develop different coping techniques so that I can fully engage with my studies.
Alongside this, I’ve engaged with the mental health service, who have supported me in getting an Individual Support Plan in place. The Mental Health Advisor suggested I book an appointment with the disability team. Engaging with the team meant I could apply for Disabled Students’ Allowance through student finance and have access to equipment and a Specialist Mental Health Mentor. Their role is to help me manage and approach my studies in bitesize chunks. So, I don’t get too overwhelmed!
I’ve also spent time engaging with the student money advice team. I noticed my anxiety increased by some financial difficulties I was having during my studies. They helped me to budget and plan ahead with my finances. This support played a big part in reducing my anxiety, as the stress resulting from this situation made engaging with my studies difficult.
Accessing these services has helped me. I feel able to engage fully with my studies and to achieve the best work I can. I would recommend any student to access the support you need through the University. Every single member of staff I’ve engaged with has been helpful and supportive. They have gone above and beyond to help me feel fully able to engage with my studies. The support is there so, take advantage of what’s on offer here if you are struggling with your mental health.”