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UEA LCR

Norwich Research Park

Norwich

NR4 7TJ

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Join us at the Courage Festival of Postgraduate Researchers’ Mental Health and Wellbeing!

About this Event

COURAGE FESTIVAL PROGRAM

Are you a postgraduate researcher (PGR) interested in mental health and wellbeing among your peers? Are you a member of staff working with PGRs and PGR mental health and wellbeing? Do you have ideas about what prevention, intervention and support initiatives are happening, why they sometimes succeed and why they sometimes fail? Would you like to experience some of these initiatives in practice? Do you want your views heard about PGR representation in higher education, PGR teaching engagement, supervisory relationships, PGR programmes more generally?

If the answers to these are 'Yes', come along to the Courage Festival to share your experience, expertise, feedback, story and thoughts - and make a difference!

The Festival

This one-day Festival focuses on mental health and wellbeing of PGRs. In the UEA Students' Union Honesty Project (2015) found 77% of PGR respondents had suffered stress whilst studying, while nearly half experienced isolation and loneliness . But PGRs are often missed in discussions about student wellbeing. They also have their own particular pressures and challenges which make them different to other students.

In the first part of the Festival, we cordially invite PGRs and members of staff (including academics, leaders, professional services staff and practitioners) to participate, discuss and provide feedback on a series of activities designed by the Courage project. This project is piloting new approaches to prevention, intervention and cultural change around mental health and wellbeing among PGRs. It is led by the University of East Anglia, in partnership with UEA Students’ Union, the Norwich Bioscience Institutes, and the University of Suffolk. Courage includes building research and social community culture, resilience training, physical exercise, support for supervisors and associate tutors and developing a Health Impact Assessment to embed good mental health into everyday practices.

In the second part of the Festival, PGRs are invited and encouraged to share your experience as doctoral researchers, from the very early stages of the journey to the last. Your mental health and wellbeing care are every institutions’ responsibility. Every PGR is important, every story is influential, every question is fundamental, and every answer is relevant. During this part of the Festival, we will create a public statement on addressing PGR mental health and wellbeing, with associated actions.

The Festival will consider the HE system as a whole and its context, including other organisations but also ideas, interests, institutional structures and power relationships. Some views expressed may be controversial. We ask that all participate in a spirit of openness and respectful challenge of each others' views.

Courage Festival Day Plan

The final plan of the day will be distributed closer to the day of the event. Indicative themes of discussion and action will include Courage activities from various Strands of the project, PGR discussions around their experience as postgraduate researchers, feedback on both Courage and other interventions as to what seems effective or not effective, suggestions, what could be improved, what could be replicated in different institutions, a tour around our PGR spaces. There will be provided coffee/refreshments breaks, lunch, and fairwell drinks at the PGR social space.

Further details will be given in due course. For those arriving on 10 September there will be welcome drinks from 19:00.

Costs

The workshop is part of the 'Courage Project', funded under the Catalyst network by the Office for Students and Research England.

The Festival is free for all to attend, and includes refreshment breaks, lunch, welcome and farewell drinks. The Courage project will also cover the cost of a limited number of accommodation spaces for PGR attendees. These will be allocated on a first-come first-served basis. Details available upon request.

To express an interest in the Festival, and with any questions, please contact Maria Tsimpiri at M.Tsimpiri@uea.ac.uk.

COURAGE FESTIVAL PROGRAM

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Norwich Research Park

Norwich

NR4 7TJ

United Kingdom

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