College News


Mental Health and Wellbeing

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Mental Health Day was observed worldwide on Sunday, 10 October. Hibernia College cast its focus on mental health and wellbeing last week with events for students, staff and faculty.

Positive Mental Health

The importance of mental health in our lives and work cannot be overlooked. Cultivating positive mental health involves becoming mindful of our overall social, emotional and physical wellbeing, and incorporating habits to promote wellness. By raising awareness of the value of caring for our mental health, we hope to become familiar with different wellness techniques and reverse stigma by changing attitudes around mental health issues.

Wellbeing for Students

Dr Niamh O’Brien offered a wellbeing webinar to Professional Master of Education (PME) students on the evening of Thursday, 14 October. The session provided students with a practical way to understand mental health and experience methods that increase mental fitness.

Teacher wellbeing is central to the wellbeing of children and the members of the school’s community. Well teachers promote well students. Fostering student teacher and teacher wellbeing will allow teachers to understand the biopsychosocial influences on mental health and help them adapt strategies and techniques suited to the socioecological system and the school culture.

Dr O’Brien explored the concept of wellbeing and highlighted the importance of beginning to understand mental health in a way that enables us to protect it and respond effectively when the adversities of life occur. The workshop combined a range of research-driven strategies and a design that seeks to increase our understanding of mental health and positive mental health, decrease stigma, and promote effective help-seeking responses to mental health needs.

Mindfulness Meditation for Students, Staff and Faculty

A mindfulness meditation practice session was held for students on Wednesday, 13 October and for staff and faculty the following day. Pamela Renwick of Alive Coaching facilitated the sessions. Pamela is an accredited coach with the International Coaching Federation (ICF), an experienced teacher and practitioner of yoga, meditation and pilates, and is keenly interested in researching and helping others with stress relief. Faculty and staff across all departments attended the Thursday session.

Pamela highlighted the importance of exercise, sleep, nutrition and the mind in looking after mental health. She led participants in guided meditation, breathing exercises and a gratitude practice to continue beyond the session. The connection between mediation and reduction of stress and anxiety, improvement in sleep, increased attention span and self-awareness were presented with scientific backing. Participants left empowered with self-care techniques to manage stress in their daily lives.

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