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Nailing jelly to a wall: Providing wellbeing support in a time of uncertainty - Episode 1

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1 Hour
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Higher Education and Further Education
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The newly refreshed MWBHE (Mental Wellbeing in Higher Education) Expert Group housed at Advance HE is delighted to invite you to join the first of two events hosted by frontline practitioners for frontline practitioners.

With an ‘on the sofa’ informal style, our one hour Autumn webinars will kick off and round up one of the strangest terms ever witnessed in higher education.

The sessions will feature representatives of organisations such as HUCS, Nightline, AMOSSHE, UMHAN, SHA, BACP- UC plus special invited guests with outstanding expertise in providing student support to dispersed student bodies.

If you work, or have an interest, in student mental health and wellbeing -  sign up now to hear and contribute to a lively discussion, as we attempt to ‘nail jelly to a wall’ and contemplate a variety of creative solutions to the current challenges.

Episode two takes place virtually on 24 November 2020. Find out more and book your place here.

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Panel speakers

Géraldine Dufour - Panel chair

As the Head of Counselling at the University of Cambridge, Géraldine Dufour oversees the provision of psychological support for the collegiate university, leading a large team of counsellors, CBT therapists, university sexual harassment and assault advisor and mental health advisors. She is the past Chair of the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP) Universities & Colleges Division and the national group for Heads of University Counselling Services (HUCS), as well as the Chair of the Academic Committee of China-UK University Counselling Association. Géraldine taught on the MA in Counselling programmes at Leicester and Birmingham Universities, and she is a visiting professor at Fudan and Tongji Universities in Shanghai. Géraldine is a member on a number of national committees related to student mental health and wellbeing, a speaker at national conferences, as well as a contributor to research.


Rotimi Akinsete - Panellist 

Rotimi Akinsete is the Associate Dean of Students at the University of the Arts London and is a therapeutic counsellor and clinical supervisor with over 25 years extensive experience in managing community, NHS and HE wellbeing services. Over the last decade he has developed the  Black Men on the Couch project, a unique program that aids in self-reflection, discovery and personal growth for black and minority men. He is also author of This Book Can Help: The Men’s Headspace Manual (MoM Books). Rotimi is a member of a number of professional associations including the British Association of Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP), Psychotherapists & Counsellors for Social Responsibility (PCSR), the International Association of Relational Psychoanalytical Psychotherapy (IARPP), BAATN (Black, African and Asian Therapists Network) and is an executive member of the Association of Managers of Student Services in Higher Education (AMOSSHE).

Rotimi Akinsete

Laura Smythson - Panellist 

Laura has a background in general nursing and now leads the Wellbeing and Welfare department at the University of Surrey. Laura's expertise lies in eating disorders and contagious disease planning in higher education, and was at the forefront of Europe's largest meningitis B vaccination program in response to a cluster. Pandemic planning has been high on her agenda for the sector and she has been involved in the response from the early stages of the COVID-19 outbreak.

Laura Smythson

Dr Dominique Thompson - Panellist 

Dominique is an award winning GP, young people's mental health expert, TEDx speaker, author and educator, with two decades of clinical experience. She is author of The Student Wellbeing Series (Trigger Press), and co-author of How to Grow a Grown Up (PenguinRandomHouse). Dom has done two TEDx talks; ‘What I learnt from 78000 GP consultations with university students’ and ‘Understanding Why’. She contributed to Student Mental Health & Wellbeing in Higher Education: A practical guide (Sage). Dom is a Clinical Advisor for NICE, RCGP and Student Minds. Dom is lead clinical advisor for Bring Well, Living Well Epigeum. Further information about Dom can be found here.

Dominque Thompson