firstpoint’s five points about STAR appointments (Support, Triage, Advise and Referral)

Every Monday, firstpoint publishes five points about a topic related to life at university. This week, how to get help via a STAR appointment…

POINT ONE: What is a STAR appointment?

Open to all students, a STAR appointment allows you quick access to a trained professional to get help with any emotional, psychological or mental health issues that you may be experiencing. The 30 minute appointments are available Monday – Friday, between 9am and 4:30pm, and are held via telephone or Microsoft Teams.  Contact firstpoint to book an appointment, including your name, student number, contact details and your availability.

POINT TWO: What happens in a STAR appointment?

You’ll meet with an experienced, professional practitioner from the Counselling and Mental Health Service (CMH) who will work with you to identify the support needed to meet your individual needs. You might discuss:

  • Your current issues and how they are affecting you;
  • What you would like to be different;
  • What would be an immediate plan as a first step to help you;
  • A referral to other services quickly to help resolve issues;
  • Whether further support from CMH would be helpful to you and what form that might take.

POINT THREE: What happens after a STAR appointment?

If you feel that you’ve been able to resolve the issue within your STAR appointment then nothing further will happen, and you’re always welcome to book another appointment in the future if things change.

It may be that further sessions from the CMH team will be beneficial to you. You’ll have the opportunity to discuss what this might be with the member of our team who you’re meeting. You’ll leave the STAR appointment with an action plan that will include ways that you can start to help yourself ahead of working with the team. These may include:

  • Online or self-help resources;
  • Strategies to work on;
  • Specific appointments that we recommend you book (e.g. GP)
  • Support from other Student Services, like attending Fancy a Cuppa 

POINT FOUR: How long do I have to wait for a STAR appointment?

Normally you will be offered an appointment within 1-2 days of contacting firstpoint. If you’re not able to make the time or day offered you may need to wait a little longer.  It is really helpful if you can include your availability when you contact firstpoint to book.

POINT FIVE: Are there any other services I can access whilst waiting for my STAR appointment?

On the Counselling and Mental Health webpages, you can find self-help information and external sources of support.  There is also guidance if you find that you are in a crisis now.