Mental health campaign stamps out stigma at DMU in Leicester

stamp out stigma

By Bethany Smith

A Stamp Out Stigma campaign was launched at DMU on Monday to raise mental health awareness among students.

The university’s Vice President of Welfare, Keira Rounsley, 21, set up a string of events around campus that took place both Monday and Tuesday in order to promote communication and provide an outlet for those suffering.

She said: “This campaign is about supporting people with mental health problems. Students can come to university with pre-existing mental health conditions or react to mental illness whilst they’re here and it’s our job to support them throughout their time at university and let them know that there’s no shame in feeling anxious, stressed or depressed, there is always someone to talk to.”

A charity bike ride took place in which sports teams and societies rode an exercise bike for 874 miles to raise money for Richmond Fellowship, a mental health charity that will provide a drop in service for the university.

Students were also encouraged to contribute to a hand print page in which they pressed their painted hands onto a sheet, along with their names and an explanation of what de-stresses them.

Other events included meditation, arts and crafts, mini boxing session, free tea and cake, bubble wrap popping, puppy petting and a film night.

Miss Rounsley, who recently passed a policy to ensure that at least one person from every society is trained in the issue, said: “Mental health is so important to me because not only have I suffered with it myself, my mum has had severe depression.

“Truth is, everyone has it, whether it’s good or bad and Stamp out Stigma is here to get students and staff talking about it and for that openness to have a positive impact on their lives.”

The campaign will run for the rest of the year and more events will be put on such as DSU de-stress which will take place around exam time.

Miss Rounsley will also be running more campaigns throughout the year including Tighten your Belt, a healthy eating campaign, Take a Moment, a housing campaign and a Personal Safety campaign.

Black History celebrations commenced at De Montfort University


Black History Month was celebrated in style at De Montfort University, with a series of events held this week.

The Launch event began on Tuesday at 3.30pm in DMU’s Campus Centre Atrium and was hosted by its Chief Operating Officer Ben Browne.

The afternoon included live performances from a range of talent within DMU and included DMU Steppers, Indian and urban dancing, a Poetic recital and singing.

The purpose of the event was to celebrate the contributions made to society by Caribbean, Asian and African people and focus on problems facing the black community.

Mr Browne said: “This is a national event which we celebrate every year. It is important to recognise the contributions black people have made and to counter any stereotypes which are out there. It is also important to consider what black people contribute to society.”

In partnership with the event, the Disability Advice and Support team spread the word about sickle cell disease on campus.

The Advice team were on hand to raise awareness about a myth that sickle cell is confined to African regions.

At the beginning of the event, Mr Browne made a speech and mentioned the success of black history so far.

He referred to recent announcements surrounding new DMU Chancellor, Baroness Lawrence as a ‘historic moment’ for black history.

Finally, after a spectacular variety of performances from the DSU clubs and societies, drinks and canapes were served.

James Thompson, who sang at the event, said: “It is a privilege to be able to perform for Black History and I like what it presents. It’s all about being proud of where you come from. Your heritage doesn’t determine your legacy.”

This week has seen a whole host of events held in aid of Black History, from an Equality and Diversity seminar on Wednesday, to a Film screening this afternoon.

The last event will be hosted by Dr Rupert Gammon on Friday October 23 at 1pm in the first floor of the Queens Building.

Dr Gammon will consider the work he is undertaking in Africa to bring electrical power to off-grid communities and reflect on African power.

For further information visit the DMU events page:

De Montfort University holds biggest careers fair in new building



De Montfort University opened their biggest careers fair for students in the newly transformed building The Venue@DMU this week.

The event held in the modern £5.4million site on Tuesday 27 and Wednesday October 28, exhibited some of the biggest names in UK graduate recruitment to come and talk to students about what they had to offer.

Hundreds attended the lively fair to make connections and find out about internships, placements and graduate schemes.

DMU Careers and Employability made an appearance at the event to give advice to students.

Employability officer Amardeep Pansar said: “We’ve had lots of graduates and undergraduates come to us today asking for help with improving employability so we’ve given tips on improving CVs and networking or suggested they book an appointment with us.”

The university’s careers team offers a range of resources such as mentoring and coaching.

He added: “This exhibition is a great opportunity for both students to network and see what’s out there for them.”

Popular businesses such as ASOS, George @ Asda, Boots and Vodaphone were present looking to recruit DMU goers.

A spokesperson for Next said: “We’ve been told our trainee scheme programmes are probably some of the best in the industry. We would really like to take on people who love retail, fashion and business.”

A range of presentations were also given throughout the days such as talks on exchange trips to Japan and ‘A day in the life of an IT professional’ given by FDM groups.

Campus recruitment agency Unitemps came to the event to remind students there are opportunities to boost their CV whilst at university.

Recruitment resourcer Chris McMinn said: “We’re trying to get as many people as possible to sign up to our email list today which advertises jobs to fit around their schedules. It will probably make it slightly easier to find and apply to jobs later on.”

As well as big companies, other agencies and organisations made the agenda including Macmillan, AmeriCamp and Leicestershire Centre for Integrated Living (LCiL), making work experience placements an option for students too.

Project Manager for LCiL John Coster said: “We’re always looking for volunteers and getting people involved with what we do. There are also chances for writing for our quarterly magazine.”

Maisie Danson, biomedical undergraduate student,
said: “The careers fair has been really useful for me and opened up some options I didn’t know about. Now I feel a bit more confident about graduating.”

For more information visit



Share spooky stories with DMU Bookstore this Halloween

By Dan Ableson

Creative writing enthusiast are encouraged to show-off their skills in a spooky stand-up event to celebrate Halloween.

The DMU Bookshop, attached to Hugh Aston building on campus, is hosting an open-mic session for all students to showcase themselves and tell their most terrifying tales in front of a live audience.

Branch Manager Katie Parkin said: “We wanted to run an event to coincide with Halloween that would also engage with the students, so we thought an open-mic evening would be the perfect format.

“The Bookshop is a relatively unused space after hours and we wanted to start getting more involved with DMU students and start running more events that they can be a part of.”

The event, which takes place October 30, 6pm-9pm, will also feature local writer Daniel Ribot, who will be there to kick start the evening and promote his new book.

Miss Parkin continued: “One of our staff members is part of a writing group based in Leicester and her friend, Daniel Ribot, had just launched his new vampire inspired novel with their group, so we thought he would be a good speaker to start the night off. It will also showcase him as a writer and anyone else that wants to get their name out into the public eye.

“We are looking for a five-minute reading of their own work, with a brief explanation on what their piece is about, their inspiration, and why they chose that genre. We don’t really have any pre-conceived ideas, we just want funny and spooky stories to tell.”

This is the first time that the Bookshop has organised an event of this nature. In the past it has worked closely with university schemes such as Cultural Exchanges and book launches for local writers. It has come in time for the expansion of the shop’s fiction and popular non-fiction sections, as they try to attract people from all over the city to buy, not just students.

For further information on how to get involved, speak to a member of staff, or contact them via Facebook, Twitter or telephone.

Alternatively you can email:

Unique ghost hunt at ‘most haunted’ Belgrave Hall in Leicester

Belgrave Hall, one of Leicestershire’s most haunted buildings, will get even spookier this Halloween as it hosts a one-off ghost hunt.

The building, as seen on Living TV’s ‘Most Haunted’, is famous for it’s ghostly goings on, and will be taken over by a nationally renowned events company for the night.

On Saturday 31 October, Dusk Till Dawn Events will put on a ghost hunt at the hall, which will include Table Tipping and Glass Divination.

Nathan Gladwin, from Dusk Till Dawn event, said: “This really is ghost hunting at it’s best at such fantastic location.

“There will be full use of ghost hunting equipment, as well various experiments such as table tipping and glass divination.

“Bring along your cameras and any other recording equipment, because you never know, you may catch something on film.”

The building was built in 1709, and ghostly sightings have been reported at the hall for years.

In 1999, Belgrave Hall became famous throughout the world when two ghostly figures were recorded by security cameras in the gardens.

Other ghostly phenomena reported over the years is that of footsteps on the first floor landings and heavy doors shutting of their accord.

The ghost hunt, which will take place on the night of Halloween, promises to be a unique, and frightening, experience.

There will be vigils throughout the night in the most ghostly active parts of the location.

Tea, coffee and biscuits will be supplied by Dusk Till Dawn Events.

Nathan Gladwin said: “There may be no heating at the building, and it may be very very cold and very dark so we urge our guests to bring warm clothes and torches.

If you want to attend the event, you can book tickets on the Dusk Till Dawn website.