Gertie Raftery, DkIT
Gertie Raftery, Head of Counselling, DkIT
Gertie Raftery is the recently appointed Head of Counselling at Dundalk Institute of Technology (DkIT). 18 years ago, she set up the first Student Counselling Service in DKIT, providing psychological support for students as well as advising on mental health & well-being.
She now leads a team of 5 providing a range of supports and outreach for students. She is particularly proud of the way the service was able to move all their supports online as soon as the pandemic hit
Gertie is passionate about Student Counselling because intervention at this age is so important in improving life-long quality of life. She is constantly amazed at the resilience of students who overcome incredible obstacles in their personal lives to achieve their personal and academic ambitions
Gertie has been recognised in their field and is currently Chair of Psychological Counsellors in Higher Education Ireland and is a member of a number of national working groups including Connecting for Life Group at the HEA, Drug Use in Higher Education Task Force, National Advisory Council on Ending Sexual Harrassment & Violence in Third Level (ESHTE)
Gertie graduated with a BA Psychology from (NUIG), Master’s in Counselling (UCC) and post graduate diploma from the London College of Psychosexual & Relationship Therapy
“The way I cope with lockdown is taking it in small chunks , today, this week, not thinking ahead as to how long it is going to last. We are all missing the restorative effects of a social life whatever that is for each of us. I certainly underestimated its importance.
Self-compassion is so important right now. None of us can be as productive as we have been in the past so we need to lower our expectations and say "I am doing the best I can for now" rather being self- critical and judgemental.”