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News, groups and workshops

Groups and workshops

Our groups and workshops are designed to support you through the demands of academic life. Our students often say they find it beneficial to be part of a group where other people are experiencing similar difficulties. Some workshops, such as the mindfulness exam workshop, gives you practical tips and techniques.

All workshops are held at our Colchester Campus. If you'd like to book or you would like further information about any of the sessions below, or you have queries about support at Southend Campus or Loughton Campus, please contact us.

  • Mindfulness group

    Mindfulness is: 'paying attention in a particular way: on purpose, in the present moment and non-judgementally'
    Jon Kabat-Zinn, Full Catastrophe Living, Delta Trade Paperbacks, 1991.

    By focusing our attention on something as subtle as our own breath, we are then able to apply that focus to thoughts and actions in our daily lives. The Buddhist tradition, where the current Western concept of Mindfulness originated, describes the mind as a wild horse that needs to be reined in and brought under control in order to serve us effectively. Meditation is not about emptying the mind, but about concentration and focus made possible through a kindly awareness of the body and the use of simple strategies to bring calm and clarity to the mind.

    The group will run regularly during term-time throughout the academic year, and will consist of a 20 minute relaxation body scan, 45 minute guided Mindful Breathing meditation and time afterwards to discuss techniques and progress.

    Spring Term

    • Time: Mondays 4.30pm – 5.45pm
    • Location: 5N.4.6

    Summer Term

    • Time: Mondays 4.30pm – 5.45pm
    • Location: 4.336

  • PhD workshops and groups

    The Wellbeing Service run two hour workshops for PhD students at various points throughout the year. The workshops are an opportunity for PhD students from any department to meet up, talk about issues they may be experiencing related to their studies and offer peer support and feedback.

    Common issues that come up are related to lack of motivation, procrastination, isolation, and juggling commitments but it is also a forum for students to talk about whatever issues they would like to. The workshops lead to formation of a group that meets regularly.

    Please contact to find out details about the next available workshop.

  • Settling into University

    Managing the emotional impact of change

    • Feeling alone, overwhelmed, anxious?
    • Sometimes feel like you don’t know where you are or what you are doing?
    • University life not quite what you thought it would be?
    • Looking for ways to navigate your way through?

    This workshop is an opportunity to gain some ideas about managing emotional challenges you can encounter as a new university student. Maybe you are feeling a bit lost, overwhelmed, anxious and unsure about university life. Maybe so far life at university has not been what you expected.

    You might be feeling you’ve lost your identity or wondering if you have done the right thing coming to university and you are not sure where to go for help.

    Coming to university is a major life change and we are not always necessarily prepared for how this will make us feel. This workshop will be looking at ways in which you can start to acquire tools that might be helpful in navigating your way through university life.

    Please contact to book a place.

  • Chat with Charlie

    Charlie Watkins Foundation in partnership with Mid and North East Essex Mind

    A new online mental health support service for students of University of Essex

    Chat with Charlie offers online mental health support three evenings a week between 6pm – 10pm. You can get support with exam stress, relationships, low mood, anxiety or anything else which may be troubling you. Log on just to chat or find out how to get additional support.

    Chat with Charlie by visiting Mind for Mid and Northeast Essex .


    For more information about Chat with Charlie, contact