Student wellbeing

When our wellbeing is good, we feel and function well. And when students’ wellbeing is good, they meet their potential and thrive academically.

At Downing, student wellbeing is supported by a team of registered professionals including a Head of Student Wellbeing, two College Nurses, two College Counsellors and a physiotherapist. We take a holistic, proactive and preventative approach to wellbeing, supporting students to make positive changes and take better care of themselves.

We offer a range of wellbeing interventions including one-to-one physical and mental health consultations; wellbeing advice and signposting; wellbeing self-help tips and techniques; and plans to manage wellbeing. We also run wellbeing campaigns, activities and events throughout the year.

The Downing wellbeing team

Kate Daniels, Head of Student Wellbeing

As Head of Student Wellbeing, Kate liaises with the wider College welfare team and oversees the design and delivery of Downing’s student wellbeing support. Her aims are to improve student mental health literacy and better understand the key risks and protective factors for student wellbeing.

Kate provides one-to-one psychological and emotional support to Downing students, including:

  • One-off chats and check-ins
  • A reflective space in which to feel heard and understood
  • Advice and guided self-help on themes such as stress and anxiety, low mood, self-care and coping strategies
  • Signposting to relevant services within College, the University or the NHS
  • Assessments and consultations for more complex mental health difficulties
  • Crisis support where needed

Kate also coordinates and delivers wellbeing workshops and activities.

Rachel Lister and Anne Shaw, College Nurses

Our College Nurses offer a range of health and wellbeing support for students including assessment, signposting and advice with minor injuries or mild to moderate mental health difficulties. They can coordinate support from your GP and, in some instances, refer you for more specialised help or treatment.

You will find the College Nurse in O Staircase, room 5.

To book an appointment with a College Nurse, please log on to Moodle via the College Nurse Registration and Appointments page

Gudrun Haraldsdottir and Katie Holland, College Counsellors

Gudrun and Katie deliver psychodynamic counselling and Cognitive Behavioural Therapy at the University Counselling Service. In addition, they offer counselling at Downing on two days a week during full term. To self-refer for College-based counselling, visit

Karen White, College Physiotherapist

Our experienced physiotherapist Karen White provides early access to assessment and treatment of joint and soft tissue problems. The College physiotherapy service also offers help with relaxation exercises, posture re-education and ongoing Musculoskeletal problems. 

Please contact the College Nurse if you would like a referral to the free College physiotherapy service provided by the Cambridge City Physiotherapy Clinic, at Cambridge Regional College, Cambridge CB4 2QT.

First aid

A first aid box is held in the Porters’ Lodge and all Downing College Porters are trained first aiders. Porters' Lodge telephone: 01223 334800.

An accident form must be completed for any injury requiring first aid which is sustained on College property. Forms are available from the Porters’ Lodge.