How UCEM’s disability and welfare team supported me with my mental health

Posted on: 2021-03-17

Our disability and welfare team is trained to support students with physical and sensory impairments, specific learning difficulties, autism spectrum disorders, mental health conditions, and long-term health conditions.


Here, Ahmed, who studies on our BSc (Hons) Construction Management programme, shares how he sought support for his mental health from the team and what impact it had…


The year 2020 was a challenging year for many students including myself as the effects of COVID-19 inflicted constraints on people’s physical and mental wellbeing.

The UK government enforced restrictions which have had a lasting impact on a professional and personal level for me as I have dealt with significant stress and anxiety in the past which were compounded by the pandemic as we limited our social and work space to the ‘bubble’ of our home.

It is difficult to express or articulate in most instances when our emotional, psychological, and social wellbeing is adversely affecting many facets of our lives. I have experienced the emotional challenges of family-related issues over the past year and suffered through reduced productivity, depleted motivation and disengagement from work and social life.

One of the key challenges I faced was attempting to comprehend the fact that I was struggling. I realised the consequences of trying to mitigate this alone could lead to long-term health problems.

One of the actions I committed to was contacting UCEM’s disability and wellbeing advisor whose contact details I had attained through the weekly forum digests. The discussion with the advisor was one of the most aiding conversations I had had in a long time as I was able to convey some of the difficulties and challenges I have faced during the year, especially issues which obstructed my studies.

One of the key things I have learnt from this was the importance of support because without the designated support system offered by the university, I am not sure I would have been able to complete my assignments or conclude my modules.

If you are struggling with your mental health and would like to speak to a member of the team, head to the ‘Disability and wellbeing support’ webpage for more information and the team’s contact details. Alternatively, if you are in need of immediate support, please contact Samaritans on 116 123. They are there to listen 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.