How did you get involved?
Tell us a little bit about yourself? Our names are Sam Perera and Julia Freyer and together we are the Presidents of SHRINK which is the Psychiatry Society at Aberdeen University. We are both in 4th year and we are both medics.
So, what is your society all about? SHRINK is basically for anyone who is interested in Psychiatry, mental illness, or just basically mental awareness. We are doing things that are not just for medics, but for anyone who is interested in Psychiatry in general. We are trying to promote mental awareness because it seems to be the sort of last taboo when it comes to health. People tend to be very open when it comes to speaking about testicular cancer, but when it comes to things like depression you’d rather keep it to yourself. So it’s not only just for Psychiatry as a profession, but it is also for students and promoting mental health within the student population as well. That’s why this year we try to build up a connection with the Psychology Society, because they basically do the same but we are up in Foresterhill and they are on campus.
“Shrink is open to all students with an interest in Psychiatry and mental health, not just for Medical students, our events are open to everyone”
SHRINK is a very new society and only started in our second year, perhaps because it doesn’t seem to be one of the more popular subjects. The students in the year above us started it and since we have been interested in Psychiatry since before coming to University we got involved with some of the events that they organised and they were very good, and from there on we got more involved.
Do you have any exciting events coming up that students can get involved in? Next year we will hold a history taking session, because there are so many times when you will meet a patient with a mental health issue, in A&E, in the GP, so all students really no matter what speciality they end up going into they are likely to have an encounter with a patient with a mental health issue. So we want to give students an opportunity to improve on their Psychiatric history taking skills and also make sure that everyone feels comfortable and it is not such a scary thing when you are thrown into it. This is also very good for Psychology students who don’t really get any opportunity to see patients during the time they study so it is a great way for them to get some experience as well. We are also planning movie nights with a mental health theme and discussions afterwards. All of our events are free, and we also always provide some food, we do baking and we try to make our events fun and welcoming for everyone to come along to where everyone feels comfortable and happy.
Want to get involved? If you want to get involved in Shrink or want any more information contact firstname.lastname@example.org or visit their facebook page at http://goo.gl/6U4Uh. To buy membership visit the AUSA website at www.ausa.org.uk
“Make a Difference. Get involved.”