Chair Ladies - Sorcha Murphy

Sorcha Murphy is a DCU student from Ennis in County Clare and is the chair of Mental Health Society. Sorcha, attended the secondary school that has produced most of the Presidents (Do we have a future president in our hands?) Sorcha is studying Communication Studies, she added the course on a whim on her last day of Change of Mind while sipping on a cocktail in Playa Blanca. Her interests include cooking, chilling with friends, music and playing trad, which she has done for the most part of her life. Her music taste, however, varies from David Keenan to Kanye.

After college she would love to go into the music industry, specifically events. Sorcha has gained experience working with Whelans through the Society and at various festivals throughout the summer, but being the free -spirit that she is, who knows where the GirlBoss will be!

 

Having interviewed Sorcha, I can see this kind soul taking on the world!

 

Hi Sorcha, tell us a little bit about Mental Health Society?

My society, the Mental Health Society, is one I am so proud of. It is the only society that caters for every student in DCU, as everybody has a mental health to care for. We run a peer support programme called ‘The Hub’ that is designed to deal with any problem no matter how big or small it may be. Our volunteers are trained in Active Listening, SafeTALK and ASIST in order to provide the adequate support to those that need it. We also run events and campaigns throughout the year to help reduce the stigma that surrounds mental health in Ireland.

What made you initially join Mental Health Society when you started?

Mental health has always been something incredibly close to my heart. Growing up in Clare, suicide is a word I learned at a very young age and one that

never strayed too far from my vocabulary. I have witnessed, first hand, the effects that an institution can have on people’s mental health when the right supports are not provided and it has always been something that has worried me. This became more apparent in Leaving Cert as I watched my classmates become more and more isolated in what should have been a safe place. Not every university has a Welfare Officer, let alone a Mental Health Society and so when I saw how well equipped DCU was, I wanted to help as much as possible. I didn’t know much about how societies worked, I didn’t know the process of joining a committee or anything that came with it but when I told Sorcha, the then current chair, that I wanted to get involved, she encouraged me to run for First Year Rep and I did, and I got it.  

Name three people who inspire you daily?

  1. Siona Cahill, USI President – the trailblazer who came up with the term ‘Make Grá the Law’, sat for two terms on MSU and is now the President of USI has given attention where it is needed to women, LGBT, mature and disabled students. She was a vocal point of the Pro-Choice rallies and has continued to represent students in areas such as housing. Her dedication, drive and sincerity are just a few traits that are worth admiration.
  2. Kim Kardashian, Influencer – although she may not be regarded by everyone as an inspiration and some people may roll their eyes at this, she is one person that I look to everyday. She turned a devasting and humiliating situation on its head and powered through to single handedly build the influencer/social media industry and a brand out of her name. She uses her show to raise awareness of female issues often not addressed in the public eye such as implications of the Pill, Planned Parenthood and surrogacy, and world issues such as gun violence, hate crimes, orphanages and homelessness. She is associated with the fashion revolution of ‘skinny to strong’ and encourages body positivity daily, most recently through her KKW Perfume range. She is a working mom and all-round girl boss and for that I can’t help but find inspiration.
  3. This last one will make it more than three, but the DCU girls that surround me everyday are the one’s that inspire me the most. The sheer determination to make our campus a thriving and more welcoming place is incredible to see and for that I will always count myself lucky to call them my peers.

What are the rays of sunshine and the clouds of rain aspects of charing a society?

Seeing someone benefit from the Hub is most definitely the biggest ‘ray of sunshine’ of chairing this society. It is crazy how far a cup of tea or a chat can go. Successful campaign weeks and events also fill me with pride, I very much turn into a mom at the end of them. I’ve a lot of love for my committee members so seeing them happy with a project is another major moment of joy for me.

With that, the hardest aspect of chairing this society is seeing the committee members overwhelmed or upset by what we are exposed to. We are lucky that we have such a high standard of training and that the committee works like a family so we can all pull together when it’s needed.

 

What are your college staples to get you through the college day?

Coffee! Be it a Flat White from Londis, a tall soya iced mocha or a venti soya latte with sugar free hazelnut syrup, I will need one or two throughout the day. My phone and my diary are essential for getting me where I need to be. If it’s been a tough day, a hot chocolate from NuBar is essential.

Your favourite college memory?

I think when you end up so involved in college it’s so hard to pick just one. The Shanowen Sleepout is one that’s standing out to me at the moment. There had been a lull in society life in college and everyone was keeping to themselves and doing actual college work but the atmosphere that I think we mostly associate with DCU wasn’t really there. #ShanowenShakedown took the college by storm and that activity was surely back. I can’t quite describe how emotional the night was, but for dozens of students to sleep for seventeen hours in the freezing cold and rain was amazing. It is something I’m so proud to have been a part of and a night I’m sure I’ll remember forever.

For people who are somewhat shy at the prospect of joining a society, what advice would you give to them?

I think the best thing to do is to attend the smaller events the society you wish to join are holding, this way you will get to know the committee members and a handful of the society members and will soon settle in. Whatever you do, give yourself that little push to get out there, it will be so rewarding.

Would you consider yourself a GirlBoss? And with that, what defines a GirlBoss, in your opinion?

I would like to think I am, or am in the same bracket as a GirlBoss. I think a GirlBoss is someone who is not afraid to break the rules and to take the necessary risks to make a change. A GirlBoss, for me, is someone who is comfortable standing on their own two feet. She would never knock someone down and will do her best to support and carry the girls around her.

What should we look forward to with your society this year?

Look forward to bigger and better campaign weeks, an exciting trip and of course, our annual concert, Craicin’ Up. Keep an eye on our Facebook page for a new venture we will be launching in the coming weeks too, that’s all I can say for now!

Describe your society in 6 words?

Welcoming, supportive, non-judgemental, homely, passionate, safe.

 

 Follow Mental Health Society and Sorcha on Social Media:

Instagram/ Twitter @sorcham12

Instagram @dcumentalhealthsociety

Twitter @dcumhstweets

Facebook https://www.facebook.com/DCU