Student Mental Health Conference

Issued: Fri, 20 Jan 2017 12:18:00 GMT


Lampros Bisdounis, President of the Glasgow University Psychology Society writes:

According to a survey conducted by the National Union of Students in 2015, 78% of students have experienced mental health issues in the past year and a third reported that they did not know where to get mental health support from if they needed it. Therefore, one thing becomes apparent. Although it is widely acknowledged by the scientific communities of academic institutions that the mental health of students constitutes a significant, noteworthy issue worldwide, a particularly salient area in which a lack of access to information and services for mental health has an impact, is actually within the student population.

To address this gap, we, as the Glasgow University Psychology Society, organised the Student Mental Health Conference. The event took place on Saturday the 12 November from 10 am until 4:30 pm at the St Andrews Building, and it was attended by 160 students from universities in the Greater Glasgow area.

The conference programme focused on the key areas in which student mental health difficulties are likely to arise and different methods that are available to help students who are experiencing these. The event included four speakers and six individual interactive workshops by professionals from across Scotland, who informed the student-attendees about topics such as stress and depression and interventions such as Peer Support and Mindfulness. Various external organisations also showed their support by coming along to our conference and informing the students about their services and opportunities to volunteer with them.

The event was profoundly successful —all tickets sold out within 4 hours— and the feedback we received at the end was all positive and constructive. The attendees recognised our initiative and our commitment to trying to raise the standard of mental health care for all students by raising awareness on this topic. However, the end of the conference does not signify the end of our contribution to the field of health and mental wellbeing and the discipline of psychological science, as we already have various events planned for 2017, including a talk and discussion about the stigma around mental health issues faced by men.