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16th May 2016

University cut Counselling course which “doesn’t bring in enough money”

Students express serious concern after the closure of a course that provides a large amount of voluntary mental health care to the city

The University of Manchester has announced its MA Counselling course is closing, with students saying they have been told it did not make enough money.

Staff and students were let know it will be replaced with research-led teaching in the next academic year, after the final cohort of students finished on Wednesday the 11th of May. It came just days before 2016’s Mental Health Awareness Week, which begins today.

An anonymous student told the MEN: “We were told that our course doesn’t bring in enough money through research.

“It’s really sad that it has all come down to money rather than providing something positive to the community.”

Photo: Time To Change

51-year-old student Sarah Ellenbogen also talked to the MEN, expressing her concern that the closure would damage mental health provision even further. “This course has given over 100,000 counselling hours all over Manchester for free.

“To rob a city of all those voluntary hours is a travesty. It’s a brilliant and inspirational course. To close it in the current climate is shameful.”

A University of Manchester spokesperson said: “After careful consideration the decision was made in September 2014 to stop admitting new students to the MA Counselling programme.

“This was linked to the Manchester Institute of Education’s commitment to focus upon research-led teaching and an associated consolidation of its contribution to the counselling profession around its doctoral programme in Counselling Psychology.

“Students remaining on the programme have continued to receive the same high level of teaching as their fellow students in previous years and we value the contribution that our counselling students make to the community through their work on a large range of projects and placements, many in healthcare settings.”

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