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Scholarship will help Catherine conquer new peaks

Docklands campus

Psychology students sets her sights on international career

Distance learning student Catherine Sawyer is calling on her own experiences of mental health to pursue a BSc in Psychology – helped by a Vice Chancellor’sScholarship worth £27,750 over three years.

The scholarships target academic excellence for candidates who reflect a commitment to the University’s values of passion, diversity and courage.

Catherine said, “This scholarship will allow me to study a subject that has fascinated me ever since I experienced mental health illnesses growing up – not only personally but also around me. Human behaviour, cultural awareness, social interaction, ethical research, and scientific methods are all areas that I feel incredibly proud to be studying.

“I have always wanted to listen to others and one day help them to understand the significance of self-awareness and non-judgement towards others.”

She wants to take her education on her travels and learn from other cultures about how best to develop mental resilience.

She said, “I have travelled and met many wonderful people from east and west who have strengthened my awareness and respect for others’ life experiences and goals.

“As I travel throughout the east, in Nepal in particular, I would like to continue to help others from the UK and from other diverse cultures to support people’s needs.

“Seeing the Covid-19 pandemic and its effects on all people has once again confirmed the need for more mental health practitioners who work using scientific methods and data analysis to see how we can develop ways to understand human behaviour. This could lead us to develop new ways of coping in difficult times.” 

Looking ahead, she said she would like to continue her studies to master’s or PhD level, perhaps setting up an online clinic.  

She said, “As an avid explorer, my dream would be to pursue this while continuing my travels throughout the east where I can also develop my research into western and eastern approaches to mental health.

“Having trekked throughout areas of the Himalayas, such as the Manaslu region, Annapurna Thorong La Pass and Mount Everest base camp, I would also like to climb mountains over 6,000m and promote mental health awareness all over the globe.” 

Professor Amanda Broderick, vice-chancellor and president of the University, said, “Underpinned by our Vision 2028 strategy, the University aims to send students into the world to use their education to make positive global change.

“Catherine very clearly embodies these values with her ambitious plans to travel far and spread a message of positive wellbeing and mental wealth. I congratulate Catherine on this scholarship and look forward to following her adventurous and far-reaching career.”

If you are interested in a course in Psychology, go to the course website.