Student and Family Support

We want you to grow and flourish during your time at Trinity. Below are some of the ways in which our students can develop networks of support, many of which will outlast your time in our community.

Learning and disability support

We’re committed to supporting students with a range of additional needs. At Trinity, a specialist practitioner, Mel Lucas, can advise and support students throughout their time here. For more information about Mel’s role, see below.

Specific learning difficulties (SpLDs)

Through our Study Support Tutor, we can provide in-house screening for learning difficulties, such as dyslexia and dyspraxia, prior to formal assessment. We also offer one-to-one support for learning strategies. Funds are available through the Disabled Students’ Allowances (DSA) for equipment and learning support.

Sensory disabilities

We’re able to offer tailored support for deaf students with help from Bristol Diocese’s Chaplain to the Deaf Community. Our Disability Advisor will help students with visual difficulties or other additional needs to gain the appropriate assessment of their needs.

Unseen disabilities and medical conditions

These include asthma, epilepsy, diabetes, chronic fatigue syndrome, arthritis and back conditions. Our Disability Advisor can help students access help they may be entitled to through the DSA and, where necessary, plan for alternative exam arrangements.

Mobility needs

We’re committed to making what reasonable adjustments we can to our infrastructure and processes to help students with mobility difficulties to engage as fully as possible with life and learning at Trinity.

Disability Advisor and Study Support Tutor Mel Lucas, BEd, MA, DipSpLD (Dyslexia), AMBDA, APC (Patoss)

Mel is a qualified specialist teacher offering a variety of support for students with specific learning difficulties. She provides screening for dyslexia, dyspraxia, and attention deficit disorder (ADD) and supports students through individual study skills tutorials. She is an Associate Member of the British Dyslexia Association (AMBDA); she also holds an Irlen Screening Certificate and is able to help students with problems of visual stress and perception. Mel has had a long career in language teaching; she has been an examiner for the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) and a teacher of deaf children. She can also give help in academic English to those returning to formal education after a lengthy break. As Disability Advisor, Mel assists all students at Trinity with additional needs to access the appropriate support. To contact Mel, email mel.lucas@trinitycollegebristol.ac.uk or call 0117 968 0206.

Information for Needs Assessors >

Meet our chaplains

Our chaplains offer a listening, impartial ear, as well as a willingness to pray with and for those within our community, whether you are wrestling with personal issues, or just needing a space to vent.

Read more about our chaplains >

Student Pastoral and Wellness Team

The Student Pastoral and Wellness Team is here to offer peer support as we journey together at college.

We are here to give pastoral support and help signpost you to additional sources of support, such as college chaplains and tutors. Designated reps for Black, Asian & Minority Ethnic (BAME), Disability, Women and Mental Health are here to champion these areas in college and to offer encouragement to students in these groups.

Meet the team >

BAME student group

If you identify as BAME (Black, Asian, or Minority Ethnic) you are welcomed to join our student-led Trinity BAME group, which meets every 3-4 weeks for lunch, plans occasional socials, and shares ideas, resources, and articles through a What’s App group.

The group has four main goals:

1. Prepare

Firstly, this group helps prepare us for life after college. Sometimes in ministry, ethnicity may be a factor in how colleagues and congregations respond to us. Whether we like it or not, our ethnicity may matter. This is a group where we can discuss what that’s like, work through some of our struggles, and address these issues as formational issues.

2. Develop Our Calling

Secondly, this group seeks to encourage us in our calling. We are all training to be church leaders or priests, and part of that calling is to represent people. When you are in ministry there will be people who will identify with you simply because of the way you look. This presents a unique opportunity for mission, and in this group we will explore what that means in terms of our calling.

3. Broaden Our Reading

Thirdly, we’ll have a chance to broaden our theology. Often our thinking, spirituality, and practices are influenced by Western Christianity and culture. In this group, we share articles and resources by BAME scholars, which will sharpen our critical thinking and give an edge to our theological reflections and assignments. It is important for us to find our voices and to be theologically informed as we speak into contemporary issues.

4. Support / Networking

Finally, this group is a place of ongoing support, where friendships made at Trinity can continue into ministry. We’ve also struck up a dialogue with the BAME society at Bristol University and the Alternative Asians Association. As a group, we might attend some of their events and join in their conversations, hopefully bringing with us a Christian perspective.

Support for spouses and families

Our students’ spouses and children are a valued part of the Trinity community, and we offer many different opportunities for families to experience and enjoy college life together.

Connect for husbands and wives of current students

If you’d like to find out more about Connect (as well as loads of helpful information about transitioning into life at Trinity) you can download the newest Connect Handbook here.

What is Connect? >

Meet the Connect Exec >

The Connect week >

Connect also has a very active private Facebook group for general support, socialising ideas, and local information and advice. You can also email the Connect Exec at connect@trinitycollegebristol.ac.uk.

Meals and worship together

The daily chapel and weekly Communion services are open to spouses and once a term a student leadership team runs the all-age Light Experiment specifically designed to engage your whole family. Spouses and children are always welcome at mealtimes too, for only a small cost, and we have plenty of high chairs and child-friendly plates and cutlery.

On-site day nursery

We have our own Ofsted-registered day nursery on campus which, as well as serving the families of Trinity students, is open to the public, so it offers a great chance to get to know other families in the local area. Muddy Boots Day Nursery offers care between 8.00 am – 6 pm, and the children of full-time Trinity students are able to attend for a significantly subsidised fee.

Further education for spouses

We welcome all student spouses to take advantage of their time at Trinity and audit classes for free (which means you would come to the lectures without having to do any of the assessments). If you are really keen and want to take classes for credit, anyone whose spouse is studying full time is eligible for a 50 percent reduction on fees for many of our programmes, whether you do a few modules or actually enrol on an accredited course.

Tutor Groups and prayer triplets

You will meet weekly for formation in a Tutor Group of about 8-10 people, often the students with whom you serve in your context church, and a college tutor.

The groups meet for two hours every Wednesday, dividing their time between worship and prayer, theological reflections, serving the wider community in practical ways, and building friendships together.

Prayer triplets are a key part of our community life, helping provide personal support, encouragement, and accountability for each student. These relationships often continue to provide valuable support well beyond your time at Trinity.

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