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Health and Wellbeing

Health and Wellbeing Service

The Health and Wellbeing Service exists to support the wellbeing of students at Magdalene College. You can come to us with any issue impacting on your wellbeing. Whether it’s mental health, physical health, disability-related or other, we will discuss with you what your needs are, and either support you directly ourselves or help you access appropriate support from the University or elsewhere.

This is not an emergency service. If emergency support is required please read the Crisis Support Information for Help and Advice.

Who we are

The Health and Wellbeing service is a multidisciplinary team that includes, Catriona Keane, Head of Wellbeing, who is also a counsellor and Nurse, Taryn Rothwell, who works part-time. We are professional, non-judgemental, empathic and approachable.

Health and Wellbeing Service Catriona and Taryn

Taryn Rothwell (left) and Catriona Keane (right).

We also work closely with the wider College Welfare Team which consists of the Senior Tutor, the Tutors, the Tutorial Office Staff, the College Chaplain, and Head of Operations, however we do not share any information without your explicit consent.

Health and Wellbeing Appointment

  • Freshers Appointments
    Brief meeting to check in with Nurse/Head of Wellbeing
  • Initial Intake Assessments
    Initial intake assessment/appointments to triage individual needs, discuss mental health and counselling options and agree a plan moving forward
  • Wellbeing Appointments
    Appointments for mental health advice, support or just a listening ear for all manner of emotional, personal, or mental health concerns
  • Advice and Support
    shorter apt for general advice and support (not Physical health)
  • Physical Health Appointments
    Appointments for assessment, advice and support in relation to physical health concerns, minor injuries and illnesses

How do I make an apt to the Health and Wellbeing service?

  • Fill in the following form and include a couple of times and days that you are available; an apt will be scheduled based on your availability.
  • You can also e-mail directly
  • You can be referred by your GP, Tutor, other Health care practitioner and they can contact the service via e-mail
  • We aim to respond within 1-2 working days, with a view to offering you an initial assessment within 5 working days
  • Our hours are 09:00-17.00, Monday to Friday
  • Nurse (Monday 09:00-13:30, Wednesday 09:00-13:00, Friday 12:00-17:30)
  • We can meet in person or online via Zoom
  • We are based in Benson Court, F1 & F2, Magdalene College

What we do

In the first instance, we will invite you for an initial assessment (about 30 minutes - 1 hour). This is basically a conversation where we discuss with you what is impacting your wellbeing and assess with you what will be the most helpful way forward and how we can put this in place. This might be to receive direct support from the Head of Wellbeing, the College Nurse, referral to another University service or sometimes referral to an outside agency.

How we work

The aim of the Health and Wellbeing Service is to offer short-term, focused work, supporting undergraduate and postgraduate students to maintain their physical and mental wellbeing while at Magdalene College. For those who require longer-term support, we will support you in accessing that support, whether it be from the University, the NHS or elsewhere.

Ethical Practice for Counselling

As an accredited counsellor, Catriona is professionally accountable to the British Association of Counselling and Psychotherapy and work to their robust Ethical Framework for the Counselling Professions and as a Registered Nurse, Taryn is professionally accountable to the Nursing and Midwifery Council.


Confidentiality is between the student and the Health and Wellbeing Service, and all appointments and sessions are confidential. This means that under normal circumstances nothing will leave our service without your express permission, even if a Tutor, member of staff, family or friend contacts us.

Very occasionally and in very rare circumstances, we reserve the right to breach confidentiality in line with our statutory and ethical obligations, these are:

(i) If you have explicitly consented; or
(ii) There is a clear risk of imminent and serious harm to you or to others in which a duty of care outweighs the duty of confidentiality; or
(iii) There is a legal obligation to do so. However, in such circumstances, we would always seek to speak with you first.

We also hold as confidential that you have chosen to use the service, with the following exceptions:

  • If a Tutor has referred you to the service, we will write to the referrer to let them know that we have received the referral and an appointment to meet has been offered.
  • If we are contacted by a Tutor or member of staff who has direct concerns regarding your welfare but has been unable to make contact with you we may confirm whether you are or are not using our service.

Sometimes, we may decide together that it may be in your best interest for the service to make contact with a third party e.g. if your personal difficulties or psychological problems are affecting your academic work, it could be helpful to write to your Tutor. This would only be done with your explicit consent.

Record Keeping

All your information that the service holds is kept under the terms of GPDR in line with College requirements. Session notes are brief and a factual account of what is discussed and are stored electronically. The confidentiality of these remains strictly within the service unless:

  • you request to see them
  • you wish them to be shared for a specific reason, in which case we would request your written consent
  • we are legally obliged to do so

Your records will be securely destroyed after seven years.

Wellbeing Activities

We have several exciting wellbeing activities lined up for this term. These events have been designed with the aim of promoting mental and physical wellness, encouraging self-care, taking some time off your studies, and managing stress.

Check out this term's events on the Wellbeing Activities page, we look forward to seeing you there!

How to help us

Due to the busy nature of the service, please reply within 24 hours of receipt of an appointment. If you have not confirmed attendance within this time frame it’s possible that we may have to re-allocate your offered session time, in which case you will be sent another appointment for a later date.

As far as possible, please give us at least 48 hours notice if you need to cancel your appointment.

How to help yourself

We hope that you will feel able to reach out to us if you are struggling, but we recognise the importance of having access to useful information that can help you help yourself. For this purpose, we have provided some links to self-help resources:

University Counselling Service - Self-help resources - Self-help information compiled by staff at the University Counselling Service

University of Cambridge - Student Support - Student support information from the University of Cambridge

Track your emotions using the How We Feel App - The How We Feel Project is a free journal for your well-being. It is a nonprofit organization created by scientists, designers, engineers, and therapists to help everyone better understand their own emotions.

Mindfulness By Dr Elizabeth English - A podcast focusing on Mindfulness at Cambridge.

Ways to look after your Wellbeing - Information sheets with weekly tips, advice, resources and activities to support your wellbeing and mental health.

ADHD & How Anyone Can Improve Their Focus - Huberman Lab - Podcast by professor of neurobiology and ophthalmology, Dr Andrew Huberman, discussing neuroscience: how our brain and its connections with the organs of our body control our perceptions, our behaviors, and our health. 

The Wellbeing Thesis - An online resource for postgraduate research students to support your wellbeing, learning and research.

Cam Sight - Cam Sight is a Cambridgeshire charity that supports local people of all ages living with low vision and blindness.

Space Finder - Spacefinder helps Cambridge University students find study spaces which match their needs.

Student Space from Student Minds - Information and advice to help you through the challenges of student life, helping you find what support is available.

distrACT app - distrACT app provides trusted information and links to support for people who self-harm and may feel suicidal.

Psychological Wellbeing Service (IAPT) 

Cambridge & Peterborough NHS Foundation Trust's (CPFT) Psychological Wellbeing Service is part of the Improving Access to Psychological Therapies(IAPT) Services. This is an NHS initiative designed to make psychological or talking therapies more accessible to people experiencing common mental health problems. See Psychological Wellbeing Service (IAPT) for more information and to self-refer.

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