When I was BACP’s Lead Advisor: Workplace, much of my work oriented around the duty of care afforded by employers to their workforce. With a different hat on these days, it seems that the spotlight has now focused on HE and FE.
So, I’m delighted to welcome back Peter Jenkins who casts an eagle eye on the arguments for and against universities adopting an extended duty of care. I’ve known Peter for what seems like decades and he always pips in with savvy perspectives and reflections.
As we’re deep into a new academic year, I know that counselling services are always looking at new, creative and different ways we can meet the mental health needs of students. I’m really grateful to Val Watson of BACP Coaching division who talks to former BACP UC division Chair Géraldine Dufour about how a coaching approach in university counselling is benefitting students’ mental health.
Grateful thanks also to Francesca McDonnell who, as a counsellor in training, reflects on the duality of being a student, while also seeing students on her university placement. Though there might appear to be challenges in this role, she identifies some opportunities too.
I’m pleased to share a report from the Staff Counselling SIG, Ayan Ali, as well as Afra Turner (Research SIG) and Jane Harris (Chair of HUCS) for their updates. These special interest groups provide a great opportunity for us to connect and share together as a community.
I remain in awe of our regular columnists Michael Pearson and Sarah Hinds who write, respectively, about imposter syndrome and connecting with the outdoors. And stamping hot on their heels, we have an excellent new columnist, Eleanor Hayeswood, from the counselling service at the University of Oxford, who kicks off a series of pieces reflecting on her experience as an associate counsellor.
I’m pleased to feature Sarah Worley-James from Cardiff University as our Profile interviewee. Many of you may know Sarah, not least for her timely and insightful recent book about online counselling.
And finally, thanks to our creative illustrator Gareth Cowlin who presents a clever insight into the difficulties experienced by those with autism. I hope you enjoy this issue!