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Blackburn University Centre Student Opens Up About Mental Health for International Men’s Day

Blackburn University Centre Student Opens Up About Mental Health for International Men’s DayTo recognise International Men’s Day, brave Blackburn University Centre student Kenny Cooper opened up about his battles with mental health to fellow students and staff.

For International Men’s Day 2020, which was celebrated on Thursday 19th November, Kenny led an inspirational Microsoft Teams ‘life experience’ session where he spoke in depth about his personal experiences with illness, depression and anxiety and the support he received to overcome these.

International Men’s Day celebrates the positive value men bring to the world, their families and communities. It encourages men to teach the boys in their lives the values, character and responsibilities of being a man.

It is also a platform to raise awareness to the challenges that men face in life, especially in relation to the international male suicide rate.

Kenny said: “In 2017, I was diagnosed with depression. I had really been battling it for around two years but I was in denial and couldn’t see a way out of how I was feeling. I worked unsociable shifts and long days at my job at the time, so I was away from my family a lot and I believe that contributed to how I was feeling.

“I eventually told my GP after speaking to my wife who suggested professional help. I was frightened about sharing and being labelled or judged and I initially refused counselling and medication.

“That was until a couple of days later at work where my boss suggested I returned to the GP where I had an emotional conversation – depression was affecting all aspects of my life and I even strongly contemplated suicide.”

He added: “After hitting rock bottom I received 9-week one-to-one counselling with Lancashire Mind and started medication which I am still on to this day. I also complete a 6-week group therapy programme with Mindsmatter and began a phased return to work.

“Through my professional support and an inspiring conversation with a friend, I decided to leave my full-time Engineering role of 34 years to learn more about the brain and mind through the Psychology degree at Blackburn University Centre.

“I have aspirations to become a Counsellor in order to give back and help others who are in the same position I was. We all have a breaking point so reach out for help – speak to family, friends and professionals if you feel like you need to.”

Graduates who have studied Blackburn University Centre’s BSc (Hons) Psychology course have gone on to work for the NHS and Care Sector, in Mental Health and Wellbeing, for Rehabilitation Services and in many more career pathways.

95% of Blackburn University Centre Degrees are validated by UK Top 10 Lancaster University and, in 2020, 1 in 6 Honours Graduates achieved First Class Honours. To find your life-changing course, and to apply today, please visit 

If you are applying through UCAS, Blackburn University Centre’s Code is B40.

24 Nov 2020, 11:55 AM