May 22, 2019 Facebook Twitter LinkedIn

Joanna Bedggood, Manager of Student Wellness, and Melissa Page Nichols, Lecturer and Personal & Accessibility Counsellor in Student Affairs, Accessibility, Counselling & Student Development, presented at the 2019 Ontario Walk-In Counselling Symposium, held at the Holiday Inn Oakville Centre in Oakville, Ontario on May 9, 2019.

Bedggood and Page Nichols gave a 90-minute presentation entitled “Anxiety and Depression in Single Session Counselling.” It outlined practical strategies for therapists to use with clients who are dealing with such issues, specifically within the single session walk-in context.

Bedggood and Page Nichols created a list of fifteen strategies they have found useful in working with students within a single session walk-in model at King’s, drawing from brief solution-focused therapy, narrative, positive psychology, feminist, cognitive behavioural therapy, and dialectical behaviour therapy.

In preparing the presentation, Bedggood and Page Nichols looked at how they planned their sessions with students who are facing depressing, anxiety or both and they learned from each other while preparing the presentation. “We had some interesting generative discussions about the work that we do because, of course, you do the work of therapy behind closed doors. I learned a lot about the tips and techniques that Melissa uses in her practice,” says Bedggood.

The presentation was positively received. Many people contacted Bedggood and Page Nichols both in person and by email afterwards to ask further questions.

“The most positive feedback was that people found it to be practical in the strategies that were offered,” says Page Nichols.

“We were pleased that people found it useful,” says Bedggood. “Similarly, we were pleased by things we were able to learn from our peers during the rest of the conference. It was definitely a very good learning opportunity.” She noted “The Therapist Checklist: Enhancing SST with a Therapist Checklist” was one session they found useful, as it provided tips on how to evaluate your work at the end of a session.

The Symposium included a panel and several workshops to provide a collaborative and participatory forum for all who are interested in walk-in personal counselling service delivery. The event allowed for an opportunity for professionals and stakeholders interested in Ontario’s Walk-In Counselling services to come together and share stories of their journeys, discoveries, innovations and future directions.

“I enjoyed meeting and connecting with other people doing this kind of work in different contexts, and to hear their ideas and their experiences,” says Page Nichols.

“It was a chance for people who do walk-in clinics in all settings to come together to talk about their work,” says Bedggood.

“Ontario is a leader in the world in terms of offering walk-in counselling,” says Bedggood.

King’s offers walk-in counselling for students from September to April every weekday afternoon from 1:30 p.m. – 2:30 p.m. For more information, visit