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Annual Seminar 2018

The 14th Annual Seminar took place on Thursday 22 November at The Royal Society in London. “Mental health challenges on among the young: causes and responses” was the topic under discussion, chaired by the Master.

On the panel were Univ Fellows Professor Elaine Fox, FBPS, Professor Daniel Freeman, FBPS, and Univ alumna Dr Rachel Massey-Chase (2002, Psychology). Professor Fox is a Univ Supernumerary Fellow in Psychiatry and Professor of Cognitive and Affective Psychology. She is particularly interested in how biases in information processing can affect emotion. Professor Freeman is a Univ Supernumerary Fellow and Professor of Clinical Psychology, studying delusions and hallucinations. Dr Massey-Chase is a Clinical Psychologist in the Adult Cystic Fibrosis Service at King’s College Hospital in London.

Anya Emmons (2013, Russian and Linguistics) commented on the experience:

“The subject was very topical as mental health is a ongoing concern both for the College and for society at large. Sir Ivor Crewe opened with insightful contextualising remarks, which were followed by speeches from Professor Daniel Freeman, Professor Elaine Fox and Dr Rachel Massey-Chase, who presented observations from their own professional experience. What followed was a stimulating discussion with a plethora of comments and questions from the floor, with questions about the possible role of social media in the development of mental health conditions in young people, personal experiences with mental health challenges, and discussion of the role of genetics in determining predisposition to conditions like depression and anxiety.

“Of course, such a complex topic could not be explored in its entirety in an hour and a half and, many questions are only beginning to be addressed in scientific studies and public policy. However, it is heartening to know that these issues are beginning to be tackled head-on and brought to public attention, not least through events such as this. The sharing of knowledge and opinion carried on well into the buffet dinner with Old Members of all stripes, along with several members of staff joining in. It was a wonderful occasion to catch up with familiar faces from College as well as meet new people.

“I assume I speak for all Old Members in attendance when expressing my gratitude to the College, and all members of staff involved in putting together such a successful evening and to the speakers for educating and engaging us on this important topic.”

Published: 29 November 2018

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