Meet the SAPS Team At Queen Mary, Malta

A look at the comprehensive wellbeing and support services available for students of Queen Mary, Malta in Gozo

To ensure you receive continuous support throughout your time at Queen Mary, Malta, we have four dedicated departments ready to provide guidance throughout our five-year degree. Allow us to introduce the SAPS Team (Student, Academic and Pastoral Support), a central hub offering well-being, pastoral, and academic support to all our students, alongside mindfulness classes and volunteering opportunities.

The ‘S’ stands for support

The SAPS Team is headed by Aimee Dent, a seasoned professional with extensive experience managing mental health environments and holding two degrees, a counselling qualification, and a master’s degree. Having spent her life navigating between Malta and the UK, she understands homesickness and is keen to support concerns that may arise.

“From in-house counselling to study skills support, and services like disability and dyslexia support, exam access arrangements, interruption studies, and occupational health appointments—there is everything you need to thrive while studying to become a doctor in Malta. Whether you’re navigating coursework, seeking a friendly chat, or require assistance with specific challenges, the SAPS Team is available to you.”

“We strive to help students in their journey and show them that they’re not alone.”

Supporting you through the challenges of medical school

Malcolm Casha, a mental health officer at Queen Mary, Malta with a bachelor’s degree in social work and a master’s in counselling, says students sometimes find themselves wrapped up in the academic demands of medical school. Adapting to life on a small island can also prove challenging for those who haven’t lived away from home before. However, he says overcoming challenges will help you build resilience and support overall well-being.

“We offer various forms of support ranging from one-to-one well-being sessions to activities, informative talks on topics related to mental health and one-to-one sessions, which are particularly focused on helping students navigate emotional difficulties,” Malcolm explains. “Through this holistic support, we strive to create an environment where students not only excel academically but also thrive emotionally and mentally.”

Few people know these challenges better than David Sunnucks, clinical lecturer, department head, and member of the SAPS team. 

“Having relocated to join the team, I understand the challenges of a new environment,” David says. “Drawing on my background as a medical doctor, I’ve not only dealt with patients experiencing anxiety and depression but have also personally navigated interruptions in my studies during my time as a medical student. 

Reducing stress through both actions and words

Tina Andersen, our pastoral support coordinator, emphasises the SAPS Team’s commitment to building a sense of community for students. She holds a master’s in health psychology from Queen Mary, University of London and a Diploma in Naturopathy. She worked as a behaviour therapist for 10 years with autistic children and has worked for the NHS as a Health Improvement Practitioner as well.

“Our activities are aimed at reducing stress and giving a space for students to unwind, including yoga, mindful art, and VR on a regular basis,” Tina explains. “Then we have one-off activities such as baking sessions, seasonal drop-ins, and workshops run by external companies. We also have contacts with several volunteering organisations who welcome students’ help.”

We are always available to help

If you’re thinking about joining us at Queen Mary, Malta, know that the SAPS Team understands how nervous you might feel about moving to a small island in the heart of the Mediterranean, but we’re here to welcome you with open arms.

Still not convinced?

Queen Mary, Malta Campus is a global leading university with highly qualified lecturers. Do not leave it too long, our course is regularly oversubscribed. Register your interest at the earliest opportunity.