GW4 invites PGR-led Mental Wellbeing proposals to development stage

March 29, 2019

GW4 is pleased to invite six applicants to take their proposals to the next stage and further develop their ideas as part of the GW4 PGR-led Mental Wellbeing Initiative.

The range of topics submitted include Imposters Syndrome, desk work, mental wellbeing in the PGR community, disabled and chronic illness in academia.

A ‘sandpit’ style workshop, a mini version of the type often used by Research Councils, will take place on 30th April at the Engine Shed, Bristol. Guided by expert facilitation from Anna Britton, along with consultation from the GW4 university Wellbeing Advisors, the successful applicants will discuss their ideas and develop collaborative proposals.

The successful proposals are:

  • Care and continuity: Supporting the mental wellbeing of PGRs within the GW4 community
  • Laughter Workshop
  • Possibility in Academia – a series of talks by and for disabled and chronically ill academics
  • Building Community for Postgraduates a.k.a Bring and Share
  • ‘Desk work is the new smoking…’ Flexible standing desk and meeting spaces
  • Imposters Syndrome: The big secret we’re not talking about!

A Postgraduate Research degree is a unique experience for the researcher, but also carries with it a set of very specific and challenging demands. Within the GW4 Alliance of Universities (Bath, Bristol, Cardiff, Exeter) the Postgraduate Researcher Workstream is motivated to develop a supportive environment for researchers.

This new initiative is part of the wider support and a host of benefits and opportunities GW4 provides our postgraduate research community. Through this pilot scheme we want to enable the PGR student community to suggest and evolve new ideas to support positive Mental Health across GW4. There are, of course, already lots of activities in this space at each of the four GW4 universities. Nevertheless, we would like to take this opportunity to sponsor ideas that will address the GW4 community, and also to stimulate bottom-up ideas directly from the student community. The GW4 PGR Workstream, which consist of specialist staff working with PGR students at each of Bath, Bristol, Cardiff and Exeter, have consulted with colleagues in the Wellbeing and Mental Health services at their respective Universities to help frame this Initiative.