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Counselling and mental health support

We all have mental health, as we all have physical health and, like our bodies, our minds can become unwell. Mental health difficulties can range from the worries and anxieties we all experience as part of everyday life, to other longer term problems that affect our daily functioning. These feelings often pass, but sometimes they are hard to cope with.

If, during your time as a student here, you feel you might want or need some support with a personal, emotional or mental health issue, you can access support from Counselling and Mental Health Support.  Our service is available to all enrolled Northumbria students and you will just need to sign into your student portal and complete our online registration form – it just takes a few minutes.

ONLINE REGISTRATION FORM (Sign on to student portal first)

*Please note that the above link will take you to the Student Portal Dashboard if you are not already signed into the Portal. Once signed in, please re-click on this link or search for ‘Counselling and Mental Health Registration Form’ in Help & Support.*

Once you have submitted the form, we will look at it the next working day and we will then contact you within two working days - this may be by phone or via your student portal.

If you have any questions, you can call or email the team (contact details below).  We also have a drop-in which usually runs Monday - Thursday from 2.00pm - 4.00pm and you can access this by visiting the Ask4Help point in Student Central, City Campus Library, Ground Floor.  

Need help now

If you are not able to wait for an offer of support, and you need to speak to someone urgently, please click here to find the contact details of local emergency services.   

Counselling and Mental Health Support offer a range of support services, including: 

  • Online self-help support available here
  • Referrals to relevant self-help materials 
  • Appointments with Counsellors
  • Appointments with mental health practitioners (which can include identifying possible mental health issues)
  • Guided self-help appointments    
  • Therapeutic workshops
  • Ongoing individual support
  • Referrals to other support in the University and to support services in the community 

Attending appointments

If you are offered an appointment and subsequently are unable to attend, please let us know as early as possible (preferably 48 hours beforehand).  This is so that we can offer your appointment to another student.

Disability support

If you require disability support, including applying for Disabled Students' Support Allowance for a mental health condition, please contact the Disability and Dyslexia Support Team.


Ssw _accredContact Us

City Campus

Ask4Help point, Student Central, City Campus Library, Ground Floor

Coach Lane Campus
Ask4Help point, Student Central, Coach Lane Library, Ground Floor

Tel: 0191 227 4576

Current Students: Please contact us via your student portal


Meet the Team

Valerie Humble | Head of Wellbeing and Mental Health

Emma Paterson | Counsellor

I am an Integrative Counsellor and Psychotherapist and have had the privilege of working in a number of different settings including higher education, the voluntary sector and the NHS. Previously I worked as a Broadcast Journalist and Producer, with a particular focus on International Affairs.

Christine Halliday | Counsellor

I have worked as a Counsellor in Student Support & Wellbeing since 2011.  I work using a humanistic approach and offer students a safe and supportive environment in which to discuss the issue that has brought them to counselling.  My role is to facilitate the student to explore the situation they are in, and help them find a way forward.

Lorna McCarthy | Counsellor

I have worked as a Counsellor at Northumbria University since September 2003. The main part of my role is to work with students with any kind of emotional or mental health issues causing them concern or distress. I work mainly in a relational way and my background is in humanistic therapy.

Honey Summers  | Counsellor

I joined the Northumbria Counselling and Mental Health team in 2017, after working as a counsellor in the NHS, and various specialist voluntary sector services.  I work in a person-centred way, which for me, means creating a warm, accepting and non-directive space in which students can express and explore their feelings and experiences from their own perspective.  I am interested in supporting students to make deeper connections with themselves, and to find their own solutions to whatever might be troubling them, or holding them back.  I aim to provide a forum in which students can be creative about themselves, and find ways to flourish that feel right for them.

Katy Scott-Wilkinson  | Counsellor

I began working at the University in 2017. I am an integrative counsellor and I practice a combination of the person centred and psychodynamic approaches to therapy. I have previously worked for a number of charitable organisations including Mind. I particularly value the use of creative techniques in therapy.

Lindsay Harper | Counsellor and Mental Health Practitioner

I have been working at Northumbria University in the Counselling and Mental Health Service since 2013. Prior to this I have been employed in the field of community mental health, where I have been a Social Worker specialising in Adult mental health since 1995. I am since also qualified as a Counsellor (Integrative Therapist). I am professionally registered with the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) and also with the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP)

At the University my main role is as a Mental Health Practitioner and I also offer some counselling. Within the Mental Health Practitioner role, I am able to support students to recognise and address potential mental health issues and offer therapeutic interventions for managing distressing symptoms. I am involved in facilitating students to access more appropriate services where needed. I offer disability support for diagnosed mental health conditions.

In my counselling role, I use an integrative approach. This allows students to explore and understand their difficulties in a way that suits their individual needs (avoiding a one size fits all), with whatever beneficial aims in mind, being decided by the student. 

Jane Moffitt | Mental Health Practitioner

I have been a Mental Health Practitioner at Northumbria since 2014. My role requires me to carry out mental health assessments and offer a range of brief therapeutic interventions to students experiencing mental health difficulties and emotional issues; this may involve making internal or/and external referrals, and co-ordinating disability support for students with long term mental health conditions.

I am a qualified Mental Health Nurse, registered with the Nursing and Midwifery Council. My background consists of working in Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services, crisis work, and Liaison Psychiatry. 

Phil Brooke | Mental Health Practitioner

I am a qualified Registered Mental Health Nurse, qualifying in 2001, and have been working in Northumbria University as a mental health practitioner since 2016. Prior to this post I specialised in both Working Age Adult and Children and Young People’s Crisis Mental Health NHS Teams, working with clients presenting serious mental illness, providing assessment and intensive home treatment to prevent hospital admission.

My role within Northumbria University involves the provision of mental health assessment for students experiencing a range of mental health difficulties with therapeutic brief interventions and liaison with locality services to provide a holistic package of support to assist students in their journey through university. 

Frances Singleton
 | Mental Health Practitioner

I am a Registered Mental Health Nurse belonging to the Nursing and Midwifery Council. My role is to assess the Mental Health of students who may be suffering from a range of difficulties including stress, depression, anxiety and other mental health issues. I offer a safe, non-judgemental place to explore current difficulties and to offer brief guided self-help and signposting / referral to other internal and external services. I really enjoy the variety of work here at Northumbria and meeting such an interesting and diverse range of students. I am passionate about de-mystifying and de-stigmatising mental Health issues in a life which can often be pressured, complex and demanding.

My background is in both Child and Adolescent Mental Health and Adult mental Health, mainly in an inpatient and Day unit setting.

Jane O'Keeffe | Student Support Co-ordinator

I joined Northumbria University in 2007 and have worked in Student Support and Wellbeing since 2014.  My role involves promoting Counselling and Mental Health Support and helping students to access the service.  I am usually the first port of contact for students who would like to access support for personal, emotional or mental health issues. I also run the Manage your Mind Workshops and manage various campaigns throughout the service. 

Angela Ganley | Student Support Administrator

I have worked in Student Support and Wellbeing since August 2011 and have been the Student Support Administrator for the Counselling and Mental Health Service since 2013.  My main responsibilities are to deal with telephone enquiries and book appointments for students accessing the service. I also provide an administrative service to our Counsellors and Mental Health Practitioners.


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