School of Veterinary Medicine

Peer support scheme

A vet school peer support scheme has been officially launched, giving Surrey students the opportunity to talk to their peers about their studies, university life and everything in between. 

The Vet School Peer Support Scheme is a new scheme at Surrey, recognising the essential role students play in supporting and encouraging one another on a day-to-day basis, throughout their time at university. Students are likely to look to each other first for help in thinking through issues and for emotional support, but there are times when this can leave friends feeling out of their depth; unsure how best to help, but anxious about seeking advice for fear of betraying trust. This scheme trains and assists appointed Surrey Vet Students in supporting their peers, and being a friendly and approachable person for other vet students to go to in times of need.

The scheme runs in collaboration with the Centre for Wellbeing, with each successful peer support applicant undertaking 30 hours of training before they begin their role, and receiving ongoing support and development in the form of reflective practice at the Centre for Wellbeing. 

The scheme forms part of an overall network of support for Surrey Veterinary students, which includes the personal tutoring system and the VetSoc led “Vet Families”.

Alexia Yiannouli

My name is Alexia Yiannouli and I’m a vet student. I’m from the North East of England and come from an English, Greek and Hungarian family. I love chatting and interacting with new people, so don’t be afraid to stop me and say hi! I enjoy playing the piano, reading, travelling, and hugging animals (something I’m sure we all have in common!) Please feel free to contact me by email

Hannah Bowley

I am a mature student on the Veterinary Medicine and Science course. I have already completed a law degree and then worked in customer service and human resources for the John Lewis Partnership (JLP) for 9 years. After leaving JLP I went back to college to do A-levels before joining the University of Surrey on the vet course, so I have lots of experiences to draw on. I currently volunteer for a wildlife charity in my spare time and run the vet school choir.

Holly Sutton

Modern life can create a multitude of strains and stresses, sometimes things just pile up and we can’t see a way out, or sometimes a tragic event may catch us when we least expect it. Those close to us may be too involved, or you may feel like you cannot confide in them. No matter how small you may think the issue is, or what time of day, drop me a line, we’ll grab a cup of tea and we can chat.

Katie Turney

I may be a big talker, but I’m also a great listener when it counts, and I believe that kindness is our best trait. You can come and talk to me about Disney, or unicorns, or what’s really on your mind, and I’ll be with you every step of the way. I’ll talk to you as your friend, who’s always there and usually has tea.

Leo Martin

Originally from Aberdeen, I graduated in Zoology from the University of St Andrews in 2010. I then worked as a junior environmental consultant and volunteered at the zoo in Edinburgh for a year before coming down to Surrey. I’m into almost any sports, particularly football and cycling. I’ve travelled through most of Eastern Europe and the U.S.

Lucy Hicklenton

Hi I’m Lucy, I’m 22, a 3rd year vet student and the Vet Soc’s Welfare Rep for 2014-16. I grew up and lived in Northumberland until I moved to study at Durham University and then again moved to Guildford where I was allocated Hazel Farm accommodation. I believe that student wellbeing is essential for people to thrive, especially after experiencing some of the challenges of starting university at Durham, and so I created and ran for the Welfare Rep position. I love university life but understand that it’s not always a smooth ride, so I want to help others in any way I can and I am here to listen to any problem, big or small, I am happy to help.

Tighearnan Mooney

My name is Tighearnan Mooney, but call me Tigger. Im a third year vetmed student from south London, I want to make surrey vet school a friendly place. As one your peer mentors I am here to help you feel at home, and offer reassurance and advise to help make your time at surrey a happy and productive one. If you ever feel like you need to talk to someone – or just need a place to vent you can email me or give me a shout on facebook.