Newcastle College University Centre has invested in a new Counselling Academy located in the heart of Newcastle.

Based at Blandford Square, the Counselling Academy has been designed to prepare students for a career in counselling and equip them with hands-on experience in a true-to-life work environment.

The Academy spans two floors and features four counselling suites, two seminar rooms, a private study hub and a breakout area. Plans are currently underway to install a dedicated computer space in the new term.

Speaking about how the facility has enhanced her learning, FdSc Counselling Skills and Therapeutic Communication student Clare Chisholm commented: “My favourite part of the Academy are the counselling suites. They’ve been created to provide a realistic environment where we can practice therapeutic skills with our classmates. I’ve found the entire facility is well designed and it mirrors what you’d expect to find in the sector. I feel confident now about my transition from college into a counselling career and I’m really excited to see how the Academy develops in the future!”

The new facility will help to equip the next generation of counsellors with the skills, qualifications and experience they need for a career in mental health and wellbeing support. Alongside a dedicated learning environment, students are taught directly from tutors who currently work in industry as fully qualified Counsellors.

Curriculum Leader, Connor Herron summarised: “Counselling provided by a trained professional can have such an impact on an individual and is now more important than ever with the rise in those who suffer with their mental health. Effective counselling can have a lasting positive impact on not only the individual but also their families and the wider communities.

Our Academy has been carefully designed to support our students to develop their practical skills and get ready to become fully qualified counsellors at the end of their degree programme. Counselling is set to become a huge growth area in our region and we are currently the only provider in the region to have a bespoke building exclusively for counselling study and practice.”

The Academy, which neighbours Newcastle Discovery Museum and The Prince’s Trust Cheryl’s Trust Centre, offers a range of hands-on counselling degrees designed to get students work-ready, including a CertHE in Counselling and Therapeutic Communication and FdSc in Counselling Skills and Therapeutic Communication.

Newcastle College University Centre is still accepting applications for September 2021.