Health and Welfare

St Hilda’s is an open and friendly College. We hope that all students feel free to ask for help or advice at any time.

There are a number of ways in which advice can be sought within College, and from related services within the University. Information from the University on COVID-19 for new and returning students on all issues, from education and student life to travel, visas and accommodation, is updated regularly. 

Personal Tutors and College Advisers

Each undergraduate is allocated a Personal Tutor, and each graduate student is allocated a College Adviser, who is available for general consultation on any problems, academic or personal.

College Officers

Students seeking general help or advice may always consult the Principal, their Personal Tutor/College Adviser or any member of the Senior Common Room, especially the Vice-Principal, the Senior Tutor, the Dean, the Chaplain, or the Academic Registrar. 

Disability Advice

Students may disclose a mental or physical disability at any stage of their time at Oxford, but we urge you to do so as soon as possible so that we can help you to get the support you need. The University of Oxford has a Common Framework Statement which sets out the guiding principles that underpin the procedures for supporting disabled students. The usual procedure is for students to disclose their disability to the University Disability Advisory Service (DAS). This office then arranges any necessary assessments, and informs and advises the student's college. 

Disability support is a collaborative approach including the DAS, the College and the department; for graduates the lead responsibility for maintaining oversight of disability arrangements is the department/faculty while for undergraduates it is the College.

The Domestic Bursar, the Head Chef, and the Head of Buildings and Projects are happy to provide practical advice on domestic matters, meals, or the adaptation of facilities in student rooms.

Medical Help

The College Doctor is available in person on Thursday afternoons. The College Nurse is available for email consultations Monday to Friday. 

College Counsellor

The College Counsellor is available in person on Thursdays. The University also has its own Counselling Service, currently offering remote appointments. It is available to all students throughout the year. 


The College Dean is a member of the Welfare team and holds regular consultation hours in College. The Dean is also the Estranged Student contact person in St Hilda's: she is happy to provide support and advice to students who are studying without the support or approval of a family network. The College also has a Welfare Officer, Laura Lysenko, who offers students a confidential and friendly service throughout term time. Finally, there are three Junior Deans who are available to advise on welfare issues. Students can chat, distanced or online, about anything and everything in total confidence with the Junior Deans.

Peer Support

The JCR Welfare Reps are responsible for organising welfare events and helping with students' welfare concerns. The JCR Welfare Reps for academic year 2022/23 are N'Dea Balgobin and Alex Hjorthol. 

Transgender and Gender Identity

St Hilda’s has a long history of championing gender equality and inclusivity. The College has an annual Gender Equality Festival and many of the College’s facilities are suited to transgender students, such as a number of gender neutral toilets and bathrooms in most buildings. St Hilda’s is committed to supporting the College’s transgender students through all aspects of their time at Oxford – academic, social, medical - and the College has adopted the University’s Transgender Guidance and Policy.

If you would like support regarding transgender issues, please get in touch with the Senior Tutor in the first instance whether you are a current student or hold a place to study at the College. We understand that each transgender student has a unique set of circumstances, and we encourage you to raise any relevant concerns with us – e.g. worries about privacy with family, your chosen name and pronouns, or about visas if you are an international student. All discussions will be treated in confidence and will be handled sensitively and respectfully.

There are a number of individuals in College whom you can approach for welfare support, including the Equality and Diversity Fellow, Dean, Junior Deans, Welfare Panel, JCR and MCR Welfare and LGBTQ Officers, and Peer Supporters.


Harassment is an unacceptable form of behaviour and the College is committed to protecting students, staff and any other person for whom the College has a special responsibility from any form of harassment, which might inhibit them from pursuing their work or studies, or from making proper use of university facilities. Complaints of harassment will be taken seriously. Advice may be sought or complaints pursued through any appropriate channel. The College has five harassment advisors, whose role is strictly a counselling and advisory one; they have no disciplinary function. 

Welfare Contacts

Dean: Dr Lorraine Wild

Welfare Officer: Laura Lysenko

Disability Lead: Professor Lorna Smith

Disability Coordinator: Rebekah Unwin 

Transgender Lead: Dr Sarah Norman

Equality and Diversity Fellow: Dr Barbara Havelková  

Zaynab Ahmed, JCR Welfare Rep