Student Support | Services to Support Your Studies | ACM

The Student Support system aims to help students maximise their potential and achievement throughout their ACM journey.

Our team is experienced at providing advice and guidance relating to issues that students may face during their studies. In addition to providing pastoral support we operate a student referral system to signpost those with specific needs to appropriate internal and external support services. The service we offer is discretionary and free.

The range of support offered at ACM includes:

Student Services Hub: Our visible presence where members of the Student Services Team are on hand to assist and advise students on a diverse range of issues that include:

  • Managing the transition from home to student life;
  • Being separated from family and friends;
  • Networking to make new friends and contacts;
  • Registering with a local GP;
  • Improving confidence and motivation;
  • Balancing study with employment or being a parent/carer;
  • Handling stress, anxiety, sleeping or eating difficulties;
  • Academic coursework/ dissertation support;
  • Communicating in a language in which you are not fully fluent.

Wellbeing Advisors: Students can be referred for support to our Wellbeing Advisors. They offer practical help and specialise in the following areas:

  • Improving lifestyle choices (including addiction issues);
  • Mindfulness and meditation;
  • Cognitive Behavioural Therapy;
  • Strategies to help cope with anxiety (including performance anxiety).

Counselling Service: This service offers up to six sessions with a trained Counsellor with whom students can discuss issues that are troubling them in a safe, supported and confidential environment. This service is completely free.

Careers Advice: This service includes:

  • CVClinics, for students to receive tips, advice and guidance on CV writing and interview skills. We can also help with finding work experience, or identifying volunteering opportunities;
  • Student JobShop – students can find out about local part-time job opportunities and receive free advice on finding work to support their studies;
  • Student Services Careers can also help with finding work experience, or identifying volunteering opportunities.

Accommodation: We provide information on accommodation lettings for prospective and current students, including those arriving from outside the area, and organise networking events to welcome them to ACM. Please see our Accommodation page for more details.

Finance: We offer advice on managing money, budgeting, travel bursaries and applying for student hardship loans. We can also set up meetings with the Finance Department to discuss more complex financial concerns such as student loans.

External Support: We can help students access external services that support a range of issues including eating disorders, drug and alcohol abuse, sexual health and bereavement. Some examples of external agencies that can provide additional support are listed below:

  • Support Services and Crisis Line Numbers

    Support Services and Crisis Line Numbers

    Anxiety UK provides support for those who have been diagnosed with, or suspect they may have, an anxiety condition. They can also help you deal with specific phobias such as fear of spiders, blushing, vomiting, being alone, public speaking, heights – any fear that’s stopped you from getting on with your life.

    Helpline: 08444 775 774 (info line 9.30am-5.30pm, Mon-Fri)

    Text: 07537416 905

    Email: support@anxiety.org.uk

    Website: www.anxietyuk.org.uk

    CALM (Campaign Against Living Miserably) is a charity which exists to prevent male suicide in the UK. They offer a dedicated support line and online web chat for men who are experiencing emotional distress or who are in crisis.

    Helpline: 0800 58 58 58 (available between 5pm-midnight, 365 days a year)

    Web chat: www.thecalmzone.net/get-help

    Email: info@thecalmzone.nt

    Catalyst (formerly SAdAS) aims to help people struggling with drug and alcohol misuse and to promote their health. They also give support with depression, stress and anxiety and offer a Reach Out Counselling service which provides up to 12 weeks of free counselling.

    Office: 14 Jenner Road, Guildford, Surrey, GU1 3PL

    Helpline: 01483 590150

    Text: 07909 631 623

    Email: info@catalystsupport.org.uk

    Website: catalystsupport.org.uk

    Citizen’s Advice Bureau (CAB) helps people resolve their legal, financial and other problems by providing free, independent and confidential advice.

    Helpline: 01483 576699

    Website: https://www.guildfordcab.org.uk/

    Citizen’s Advice Mental Health Project provides appointments with a specialist adviser covering all advice areas. To use this service, you do not need to be connected with any formal mental health service and you can self-refer.

    Office: 15-21 Haydon Place, GU1 4LL

    Helpline:  01483 230 846

    Headspace is a digital service providing guided meditation sessions and mindfulness training to improve wellbeing. Content can be accessed online, or via a mobile App (the basic version is free).

    Website: www.headspace.com

    NHS 111 is a non-emergency service available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. Calls are free from landlines and mobile phones.

    Helpline: 111

    PAPYRUS: HOPELineUK offers a national, confidential helpline for young people at risk of suicide or those who are worried about a young person at risk of suicide:

    Helpline: 0800 068 41 41

    Mon-Fri 10:00 am to 10:00 pm

    Weekends 2:00 pm to 10:00 pm

    Bank Holidays 2:00 pm to 5:00 pm

    Website: https://www.papyrus-uk.org/

    Safe Haven Café is an evening and weekend drop-in service for anyone experiencing a mental health crisis (or their carer). Mental health professionals and counsellors will be available. Open 365 days a year from 6.00 pm to 11.00 pm including Bank Holidays.

    Office: Oakleaf Enterprise

    101 Walnut Tree Close

    Guildford GU1 4UQ

    Helpline: 07919 541 420 (for outreach worker provided by Catalyst)

    Email: safehaven@oakleaf-enterprise.org

    Samaritans offers a safe place to talk about your concerns – including suicidal thoughts – in your own way, at any time of the day or night. Guildford Samaritans is usually open to receive callers at the door 9.30 am – 9.30 pm, 7 days a week.

    Office: 69 Woodbridge Road, Guildford, Surrey, GU1 4RD

    Helplines: 116 123 (this number is free to call)

    01483 505555 (local charges apply)

    Email:  jo@samaritans.org

    Website: www.samaritans.org

    SANE works to improve the quality of life for anyone affected by mental illness by offering emotional support and information to anyone affected by mental health problems.

    They operate a helpline and email services and an online Support Forum where people can share their feelings and experiences.

    Helpline: 0300 304 7000 (from 4.30 pm to 10.30 pm)

    Website: www.sane.org.uk

    Surrey Mental Health Crisis Line provides phone and text support to people with mental ill-health and those who have concerns about them. 5.00pm – 9.00am Monday to Friday, with 24 hours cover at weekends including Bank Holidays. If lines are engaged calls will be diverted to an answer-phone for you to leave contact details: someone will call back within 30 minutes. There is an SMS texting facility for people who are deaf or hard of hearing.

    Helpline: 0300 456 83 42

    Text: 07717 989024

    Surrey Youth Counselling offers up to 6 sessions of confidential counselling to those aged between 12 and 24. You can talk about anything that concerns you – like relationships, families, drugs, pregnancy, sexuality, stress, bullying, feeling low, depression.

    Office: The Jarvis Centre, 60 Stoughton Road, Guildford GU1 1LJ

    Helplines: 0345 600 2516 (with 24-hour answer phone)

    07827 992764 (during office hours)

    Young Minds is committed to improving the emotional wellbeing and mental health of children and young people. Whether you want to know more about how you’re feeling, get information about a mental health condition or know what support is available to you Young Mind’s guides can help.

    Website: https://youngminds.org.uk/

    National Insurance Cards for EU Students

    If you are an EU student and require a National Insurance Card, contact Direct Gov on 0845 600 0643 or by visiting their website; https://www.gov.uk. They will make you an appointment at your local Job Centre who will check your details are correct. If they are the application will be processed in the usual way completely free of charge.

  • Health Care

    Health Care

    Doctors

    There are many Doctor’s surgeries in and around Guildford for non-emergency medical issues and for collecting prescriptions. Your GP (General Practitioner) can help you with a wide range of issues and also refer you to external help such as counselling, Physical Therapists and Specialist Doctors. To register is a simple process:

    To find your nearest surgery and a list of GPs go to the following website and enter your location: www.nhs.uk/Service-Search/GP/LocationSearch/4

    To register you will need to complete a registration form. If you have any queries regarding this, please just ask one of the Student Support team for advice. This will require you to provide your name, term-time address, NHS number, previous Doctor’s details and your views on Organ donation. NB: Some GPs may ask for photo ID and proof of address.

    Your new Doctor’s surgery will be in contact to do a quick health check before you will be able to book appointments.

    Health Care Centres

    If your medical needs are urgent (but not an emergency) and you are not yet registered with a GP, you can visit an out of hour’s service located at the Royal Surrey Hospital in Guildford. To gain access to this service, you must be referred via the NHS 111 service. Please remember that the Royal Surrey Hospital A&E is only for medical emergencies: Dial NHS 111 if you are unwell and unable to see a doctor. Alternatively, if your medical need is an emergency, do visit the local A&E at Royal Surrey or dial 999.

    Dentist

    Dental health is also an important part of physical health, especially if you come across a dental emergency while at ACM. You can find your nearest NHS Dentist via:

    www.nhs.uk/Service-Search/Dentists/LocationSearch/3 and by entering your term time postcode. Please be aware that some Dentist’s surgeries may only be allowed to accept a certain number of NHS patients, so you may not be able to get a place at your local surgery. However, if you require urgent treatment and you do not have a dentist, contact NHS 111 for advice on where you can get urgent care. Emergency dental treatment will deal with the problem at hand and the fee for the treatment is currently £20.60. You may be advised to make another appointment for a separate course of non-urgent treatment. In this case, you will have to pay a second charge in the relevant treatment band.

  • Advice on Meningitis

    Advice on Meningitis

    What is Meningitis?

    Meningitis is an illness where the coverings of the brain and spinal cord become inflamed. It can be caused by viruses, bacteria, or other agents. The spread of the disease is normally by close social interaction and is prevalent in the young and the old. Thus, although there is an enhanced risk in higher education establishments cases of meningococcal disease (meningitis) amongst students in are relatively rare, but the effects can be extremely serious or even fatal.

    Bacterial meningitis is not common, but is a serious illness and needs urgent treatment with antibiotics. The most common of the bacteria that cause meningitis is the meningococcus. These bacteria can also cause blood poisoning (septicaemia), which is the more dangerous form of the disease. The term meningococcal disease refers to both the meningitis and septicaemia forms of the disease caused by the bacteria.

    What you should do:

    Get vaccinated

    NHS England strongly encourages new students to be vaccinated with Meningococcal ACWY (MenACWY) vaccine. This protects against meningococcal disease, which can cause meningitis, septicaemia and death. Talk to your GP to make sure that you have already had your vaccination during your time at Secondary School or through your GP before you start ACM, or from your GP as soon as you can after you arrive. The vaccination is free to UK and international students under 25 years of age.

    If you have been immunised against meningitis, you need to check if you have had MenACWY as it has not always been a part of the National Immunisation Programme. The MenACWY vaccine is not the same as Meningitis C.

    Meningitis is not common and the last thing that we would want to do is cause panic across our cohort but it is also important to keep our students well informed, especially if doing so could potentially help to save lives.
    ACM takes its responsibility for the health and safety of its staff and students very seriously. In the event of an emergency like infectious diseases, ACM will contact its community in a number of ways, such as through website alerts and email. ACM Student Services team will work with local health authorities and Public Health England. In some cases Public Health England will take the lead on contacting students.

    Register With a Local Doctor

    When you join ACM, you need to be registered with a Doctor locally to ACM or your hometown if you are commuting to ACM from home. You can find local doctor surgery information on the Student Services Module on Canvas. Also if you are here and ill, let a friend and let ACM know so we can keep in touch with you. Look out for one another, we are a community.

    Recognise the symptoms

    Meningitis is not easy to detect at first because the symptoms can be similar to those of flu. Recognising the symptoms early enough could mean the difference between life and death. Someone with meningitis will become very ill. The illness may take over one or two days to develop but it can develop very quickly with the patient becoming seriously ill in a few hours.

    Symptoms include fever, vomiting, headache, stiff neck, aching joints, a dislike of bright lights, drowsiness and this is sometimes accompanied by a rash.

    It’s easy to confuse the symptoms of meningitis with a hangover or flu, but meningitis can kill in hours if it isn’t treated. Make sure you know the signs so you can get urgent help.

    Find out more about the symptoms here:
    https://www.meningitisnow.org/meningitis-explained/signs-and-symptoms/
    https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/meningitis/symptoms/
    https://www.meningitis.org/meningitis/check-symptoms

    Get emergency help

    If you think you or someone else may have meningitis, call 999 for an ambulance or make your way to hospital immediately if safe to do so asap. Describe the symptoms carefully and say you think it could be meningitis.

    You should also contact the ACM at the earliest convenience if you do go to hospital and we will keep in touch with you and the Health Authorities. If the case is confirmed or probable then Public Health England will take the lead on prevention and will work with ACM to assist students.

    Don’t Panic!

    Meningitis B is extremely rare and is not highly contagious and the transmission risk is low. This information is just as a precaution. If you are worried or have any concerns you should contact your own GP or call NHS111 (dial 111 from a phone) for guidance, or else use 999 for emergencies. Additionally please go to the www.meningitis.org/ or https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/meningitis/symptoms/
    for more information on symptoms and signs.

  • Vaccinations

    Other Vaccinations you need for College / University

    Stay healthy at College or University by getting the vaccinations recommended by the UK Government’s Department of Health. Find out which ones you should have.
    Talk to your doctor and find out what vaccinations you will need.

    Getting your vaccinations

    Before you come to University, you should have been vaccinated against certain diseases.

    We strongly advise that you consider having these vaccinations before coming to ACM.

    If you haven’t had all the vaccinations, you can get them via your doctor. If you need advise/help with registering with a local doctor when you get to ACM you can ask Student Services for help with this.

    Vaccinations you should have

    The UK Government&amp’s Department of Health recommends that you should have vaccinations
    for:
     meningitis (MenACWY)
     diphtheria
     measles, mumps and rubella (MMR)
     polio
     tetanus

    There may be other vaccinations that are not on the list, so you should check with a doctor.

    UK students

    If you are from the UK, you might have had some vaccinations as a child as part of a
    National Immunisation Programme. Talk to your doctor to find out which you have had and if there are any you need to get before you come here.

    International students

    If you are from outside the UK, you will need to be vaccinated against the diseases listed.
    You should be vaccinated for tuberculosis (TB) before you enter the UK. If you are applying for a Tier 4 visa, you might also need to be tested for tuberculosis. Find out more about tuberculosis tests for visa applicants.

    Talk to your doctor about any other vaccinations you might need to come to the UK. You
    should also check with your local embassy to find out if you are legally required to get any vaccines before coming to the UK.

    We recommend you get your vaccinations before you leave home. If you get your
    vaccinations in the UK, you may have to pay for some of them.18DisclaimerFreedom

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If you’d like our assistance, please contact one of our team via the details below:

Student Services
Email: studentsupport@acm.ac.uk
Tel: 01483 500 800

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