Student and Staff Wellbeing

Covid-19 Update - 21 May 2020

Covid-19 Update Message to students - 21 May 2020

Lucy Backhurst, Academic Registrar, shares the latest updates with students.

Dear Students,

I know that many of you will be in the middle of assessments this week so I’ll keep this email update brief. I hope that things are going well for you.

We have been contacted by a number of students asking to collect belongings left in University accommodation so there is information below on how and when you will be able to do this.  I also want to give you advance notice about the online graduation events that we are arranging for July.  Finally, as it is Mental Health Awareness Week, I’ve included some links to useful sources of support to help you manage your mental health and wellbeing. 

Students returning to university accommodation to collect belongings

Students who wish to return to University-managed accommodation to collect their belongings will be able to do so between 1st and 19th June.  Our Accommodation Team will be emailing students this week to let you know how this process is to be managed. 

We ask you not to travel to campus until you receive instructions from the Team so that we can ensure that we are adhering to social distancing guidelines.  A booking system will be in operation and you will be asked to choose a slot prior to visiting the residences to collect your items.  Information on the subject of returning to collect belongings will be available on the Accommodation FAQs page later this week.

Students who plan to collect belongings from private accommodation should take care and ensure they also observe government guidelines on social distancing.

Online Graduation Events

I am pleased to announce that the University is planning to hold online graduation events during the week of 27th-31st July to celebrate the awarding of University degrees to our finalists. We hope that these events will build upon the recent success of the University’s first online graduation event for MBBS students and provide a great opportunity for students and staff to celebrate your achievements together.

Further details including how you will be able to participate as well as a full schedule listing the date/time of each event will be provided in June. 

With regards to on-campus ceremonies, we previously advised that we were hoping to be able to hold these in November/December. In light of the current information available and the likelihood that social distancing will still be required, this seems unlikely but we will keep you informed. We are still hoping to offer the chance of an on-campus ceremony in the next academic year, but this will only be if it is safe and if we can accommodate on-campus ceremonies.

Mental Health Awareness Week (18th – 24th May)

As you may know, this week is Mental Health Awareness Week, and this year’s theme is kindness.

The charity Every Life Matters has produced a COVID-19 wellbeing booklet, which will be sent to households in the North-East of England this week.  The booklet contains self-help information and advice for managing mental health and wellbeing during the COVID-19 outbreak, as well as advice on how to support others.  Those of you living outside of the region can access an online version from the North East and Cumbria Suicide prevention network website where you will also find other useful sources of advice and support to assist with mental wellbeing. 

NUSU are now in week 3 of their 5 week long Permission to Pause campaign which offers a range of online events for you to dip in and out of, such as yoga, baking competitions and a dog cafe.  The Newcastle University Covid-19 Community group is also still available on Facebook.

If you need any support from the University’s wellbeing team, please see the Covid-19 webpages for contact details.

With thanks and best wishes,


Lucy Backhurst
Academic Registrar