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Health and wellbeing

Student support can take many forms. Here are some of the ways we look out for our students.
Roses in the Postgraduate garden

For many students, going to university is their first experience of living independently. This can be exciting but you might also feel apprehensive. You will also be studying and learning in new ways, often with less contact time and far more independent study than at school or college.

We want to reassure you that we understand these challenges. We offer you plenty of support when you arrive to help you settle in, but we don't stop there: our focus is on your wellbeing as well as your academic life for your whole time at Murray Edwards.

Here, wellbeing is threaded through College life. Our friendly Library and gardening teams run all kinds of sessions, from yoga to plant-care, to help you balance study and relaxation - read more about those below. Our stunning gardens themselves provide a calm and beautiful space for you to recharge. Students run plenty of their own stress-busting events, too.

Sometimes, of course, you might need extra support. Your Tutor is usually your first port of call should a problem arise but there are also many other sources of support available – both in College and across the University.

People to Talk To

Porters’ Lodge

The Porters’ Lodge is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week and can be contacted at any time of the day or night in an emergency. Our porters are known for being really friendly and non-judgemental, so they're a great place to start when you have a problem - big or small!

Tutors and Directors of Studies

At the start of the year, you will meet your Tutor and your Director of Studies (DoS). These are both members of our academic staff who are assigned to look after your individual needs. Your tutor is there to support you pastorally, and your Director of Studies provides academic advice and support. You should never feel shy about getting in touch with your Tutor or DoS - it's literally their job to try and help you out! 

Head of Wellbeing

If you need to have a longer chat about something that's troubling you, it's really easy to get in touch with our Head of Wellbeing, Dr Susan Imrie - better known as Sooz! Her office is right next to a dedicated welfare room, so our students always have somewhere safe and comfortable to go when they need a quiet space or a timeout too. 

Nurse and Counsellor

We also have a dedicated college nurse - Erika Spooner. Erika is available available to discuss, in confidence, any issues related to physical and mental health. Our students can also confidentially speak to our college counsellor, Claudia Marota. 

Always Reach Out

Some students find it helpful to set up regular 'check-in' meetings with key support figures throughout term, whilst others only reach out when they know they have a problem. We encourage you to reach out as often as you want. As a friendly and informal college, when you do need to talk there will be someone to listen - so always, always ask.

Support Beyond College

If you want to talk to someone outside of college, we recommend getting in touch with The Students’ Advice Service. They offer free, confidential, and impartial advice and support to all Cambridge University students - undergraduate, graduate and postgraduate - from any College or course.  You can go to the Student Advice Service with any issues or problems you might experience as a student, from making friends to working relationships, from exams to intermission, and from welfare concerns to finance. The Student Advice Service is a part of the Welfare and Advice Team at Cambridge SU. 

Alternatively, you can refer yourself to the University Counselling Service, which is staffed by a team of trained and accredited counsellors and therapists. They are experienced in helping people from many different backgrounds and cultures, and with a wide range of personal and work issues. This service has BAME counsellors and Sexual Harassment and Violence Advisers.

Wellbeing Activities

The College organises lots of wellbeing activities during term. Our Library and Garden teams, in particular, go above and beyond to create relaxing, informal events to bring students together in busy or stressful periods. 


The Library provides in-person wellbeing events for all College members during term time, including craft sessions, wellbeing walks and yoga classes. Mindfulness colouring books and yoga mats are available throughout the year to borrow. During Easter term there are even more wellbeing activities to allow you to take a break from exams and revision, such as the student versus library staff “Scrabble challenge” and jigsaw puzzles to complete. 


Our beautiful informal gardens span 14 acres and were recently included in the Good Garden Guide. We want our students to enjoy the gardens and, unlike most colleges, students are encouraged to walk on the grass and pick flowers and herbs to use. Many of our students find that spending some time in the gardens offers them a relaxing break from their work. Our gardeners also run workshops for the students, offering help with repotting your neglected houseplants or designing vases of flowers for your room.

Student-run events

Our students also organise wellbeing events. Our JCR (student committee) have a great Instagram page where they post about all the activities they're running each term. Recent student-run events have included playing with therapy puppies, and life drawing classes.