By Charlotte North
Our Student Support Services are here for all students and can offer specialist help and support in areas that range from disability, mental heath, financial advice, medical support and much more.
Here, we catch up with three Kent Business School students of past and present who used the services to their full potential – and in turn had a rich and positive experience at university.
‘Therapy in lockdown totally saved me’
Zaid Mahmood (pictured above) is a former Kent Business School student who later became Kent Union President. Student Support helped him navigate loneliness during lockdown in 2020/21.
‘During Covid, all my housemates at my Medway flat had left to go home but I stayed. Studying all alone in my room and not seeing anyone took its toll on me. I became quite depressed, like many of us did and worried about the future.
‘In the end, I reached out to the University’s Wellbeing Service and received counselling. My therapist and I spoke every Friday and honestly, it totally saved me.
‘I built my confidence back up and couldn’t wait to embrace life once everything reopened.’
‘They held my hand through the entire process’
Akshitha R Rao (pictured above) is an international student from India, studying MSc Business Analytics. She used the Student Support services for additional needs and to help settle into university life.
‘Support and Wellbeing services at Kent helped me with adjusting to the university environment and catered to my special needs.
‘This was a rewarding experience as they held my hand through the entire process right from the beginning of my travel from my home country to university. As an international student and with additional needs, I face tremendous pressure due to uncertainty.
‘The team ensured I was given accurate and timely details about the accommodation and accessibility details suiting my needs. This gave me the confidence and peace of mind that I am at the right place where students are taken care of.
‘The constant follow up and reassurance afterwards helped me be at ease and gave me a sense of control which is essential during the initial phases of settlement.
‘I would definitely recommend this service to others who are studying at the university.’
‘I felt more confident and able to cope with stress’
BSc Accounting and Finance student Jiaolin Chen (above) has used counselling services several times during her time at Kent.
‘I have used counselling services from student wellbeing and support services three times. When I first arrived at university I felt stressed about university study and was offered six sessions over the six weeks, with meetings held online once a week.
‘When I was in my second year of university, I was offered single sessions because I was overwhelmed about my exams and needed someone to talk to. The third time I used a counselling service was in October of this year, because something happened/changed in my life.
‘Counselling services are extremely beneficial, and they were asking me to complete a questionnaire before my counselling sessions to determine what my problem is and how I want to be helped. All counsellors are extremely professional, and you can meet with them either online or in person.
‘After counselling, I feel more confident and able to cope with the stresses of study and life. I would recommend this service to other students who are having difficulty coping or are feeling overwhelmed about their studies.’