university Tag Archive

4 lessons for First Years at University

Written by Student Life

You’re in the last year of school. Everyone’s thinking the same thing: you’re about to leave a place that has spoon-fed you for the last 6 years. And now, you’ve been told to “go face the real world”. Yes, the transition is quite dramatic. Yes, it might be the most strange and daunting but most meaningful experience. Yes, it might force you to think differently. However, you’ve made it through semester one, and finally got a taste of the awaited “university life”. Now, it’s time to reflect and apply the lessons we’ve learnt.

Lesson 1: Constant effort is required

University is not someplace where you show up for lectures “just because”, procrastinate and nick off your lecturer’s notes. That’s called “slipping through the cracks” and that only works in high school when our teachers were always there to push us. However, in University, around ninety percent of studying is done by individual research and note taking. It’s almost impossible to earn a decent mark through our high school ways.

UNSW EDSOC President Emma Tang phrases her advice as “University is not a place where things are given to you on a silver platter. It is challenging and requires a plethora of critical thinking, and if you want to make the most out of it, you have to carve out your own opportunities.”

it gon be hard werk

Lesson 2: Making friendship circles are important

In high school, did you ever have a friend who was just your friend because you saw them five times a day? Well, that’s only because you had an easy way to get into contact. In high school, class times and break times were fixed, allowing you to bond with your friends without much effort. However, it’s different in university. It’s so important to make friends in university and keep in touch with the high school friends you truly love. In times of hardships or trouble, your friends are your pillars of support who know what you’re going through.


Lesson 3: Having a balance through time management is so so important

If you are one of those students who balanced school life with work and extracurricular activities, this might be a bit easier for you. However, for most people, it’s crucial to know that university is not all about placing your mind, body and soul into study. Working, socializing and time management are essential and important. They are the center of your university life. Unlike school, you’ll now need to handle more “adult stuff” which could range from more work shifts or trying to find financial stability, moving out and so on.


Lesson 4: University broadens your outlook of the world

Even though you’re one in an ocean of students, it’s less restrictive than school. It allows you to expand and grow your mindset. It’s all up to you to spread your boundaries and explore what is beyond your comfort zones. It’s all about moving forward even if you don’t necessarily want to, but need to in order to grow.

Many times in my high school years and from current high schoolers, I regularly hear “Will I be good enough?” “What if I can’t cope?” “What if it’s too hard for me?” Students always worry about not being able to put up with the pace because of constant assurances of people claiming that “University is much harder” or “After high school, get ready for ‘the real world'”.

What is “the real world”, anyway? It has a very broad definition and that’s for you to decide. Of course, in university you’re required to be self-sufficient and independent. However, after experiencing a semester, is the “real world” that terrifying? Not really. It may be harder, but that’s what makes you stronger. University brings on many challenges foreign to you. But, stay in your lane and keep pushing forward. It may be hard, but it’s not impossible.

Bruce the legend Lee

Everything falls into your own two hands after graduation. It’s up to you to take control of your situation since no one else is held responsible for it neither will they take responsibility for it. Don’t get paranoid or afraid. Make an effort to reach out to as many opportunities as you can, stay on top of your game and when things get hard take it one step at a time and you will be fine.

Believe in yourself!

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4 Things New Students Dread

Written by Student Life, Tips & Tricks

It is the start of a new semester. If you are like me, you are just starting your career in university. Moreover, also if you are anything like me, you most probably dread quite a few things about uni life. Moreover, on top of that, we realised international students! A new start in a new university in a new country. What could go wrong?


Credits: Wawasan Open University Malaysia

It is not much of a dreadful feeling but more of your insides doing a full gymnastic routine as the clock counts down the minutes until your orientation. Orientation is just sitting in a big hall while someone on the podium talks. So, in theory, it is nothing to worry. However, the thought of having to see so many people as well as being in an unfamiliar situation can be pretty overwhelming. Even though it is nerve-wracking, keep in mind that the orientation session is for you to understand how you can make the most out of your time in the university by using the resources available to you.

Making friends

If only making friends was as easy as when we were kids

If only making friends was as easy as when we were kids. In high school, it is easier to make friends – you are in a set classroom in your year, and you know those people. University, it is different. You would be pretty dang lucky to go to the same university as your best friend and even luckier if you are doing the same course! However, of course, not everybody can have that kind of luck. Mere mortals like you and I are thrown into the crowd of freshies feeling somewhat vulnerable. You are not entirely sure of other people’s intentions or how they are going to react to your unique personality. Some just ooze confidence and charisma, and that is the bomb dot com. Someone may strike a conversation with you, and it goes right. Moreover, sometimes it is only after the conversation ends do you realise how you could’ve added that extra spice. Then you are just waiting for the chance to use that witty comeback you had saved up. Certainly, trying to make friends can be a challenging task but with persistence (along with an open mind) can help you generate a spark with your peers.

(Also, I find that if you go to orientation without your parents, it is much easier for you to make friends.)

Group assignments

I was looking through my subject outline, and I noticed for a few of my courses, there would be a group assignment. Oh no. My head was already spinning at the thought of having to talk strangers, but I was also anticipating I would have to do a lot of the work too. It is pretty unreasonable to think so negatively of my peers since I have not even met them yet. However, I have had some bad experiences working in groups in the past. To avoid doing all the work yourself, be sure to communicate clearly and thoroughly with each other. Work out what is expected of the assignment and from each of you. Delegate the work equally among everybody and help check each others’ work.

Looking for your classroom/lecture halls

Directions and I do not mix too well. Having to search for my classes, in particular on a large campus, is a nightmare. I also hate being late. When you walk into class after trekking 50 kilometres just to find it, people will stare at you like you have murdered someone. Lateness also shows that you are unprepared for work, and that does not give the greatest first impression. In order to avoid such situations, it is best to explore the campus beforehand to locate key locations – lecture halls, tutorial rooms, cafes, bookshop, and other important places.

University life is pretty much like in Monsters University

However, the university is bound to be a great experience. Here you will meet people with colourful personalities from all over the world, network with your peers, and perhaps make lifelong friends. So take a deep breath, chin up, and do your best.

There are many more things that can shake up newbies so share your experiences in the comments down below! How did you overcome your nerves during your first few weeks at uni?


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Notre Dame gets creative for Art Week

Written by Entertainment, Student Life

Having low moments and experiencing negative feelings is not uncommon. But it’s the expression of those thoughts that will always help. This is what the University of Notre Dame aims to do this week.


From Monday (2/5/16) to Friday (6/5/16), the university is holding Art Week to raise awareness of student mental well-being through creativity. Notre Dame students will showcase their talents in acts that they have worked to bring to you. They range from performance arts to stand-up comedy. During this colourful week you will also get a chance to:

  • Chat to counselors to learn more about mental health and other issues
  • Eat at the BBQ which will be running every day (all proceeds go to charities who are also involved in promoting mental health)
  • Watch student-produced films at Notre Dame’s cinema screening
  • Wander Artist’s Alley and examine student artworks, talk to the artists themselves and create your own masterpiece
  • Participate in short workshops that will introduce you to the basic concepts of art and other fields of creativity
  • Get up close and personal with Notre Dame’s animal farm on Thursday (5/5/16)
  • See what more the university has to offer by saying hello to other clubs and societies at various tents

giphy (1)

Each day will begin at 11:30 am and end at 2:00 pm (daily Mass will occur from 12:30 pm to 1:00 pm). This is a great event if you are interested in different forms of creativity, want to perform and support others performing or just want to have an enjoyable time (or everything above!)

Every year most universities dedicate a week to bring together their students. What unites us is our passion, inspirations and hard work. So come down if you’re free and join the University of Notre Dame students in raising awareness of mental health concerns. See you there and have a great week!


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What is Sydney Malaysian Games 2016?

The Sydney Malaysian Games (indoor segment) this year which took place on Saturday 16th of April from 9 am to 3 pm. Many Malaysian societies from various universities were in attendance such as USYD, UTS, UNSW, Macquarie and Wollongong. I have never been to sports event before so, to be completely honest, I was nervous but excited to see what was in store.


When I arrived at 7:30 am, participants were already registering and warming up for Badminton and Volleyball which started at 9:30 am until 12:30 pm. From 1:30 pm onward until 3 pm, the Basketball and Captain Ball games began. There was an intense competitiveness yet a strong sense of sportsmanship between the players. Apart from enjoying the event, I got a chance to talk to the presidents of the groups who told me all about how the event was organised and what they hoped to achieve through the efforts of their teams.

DSC_0975 (1)DSC_0968

In order to co-ordinate such events, the presidents collaborate with each other and their sponsor, the Malaysian Students’ Council of Australia (MSA CA). It is a group effort made by Malaysian students for Malaysian students. The annual event has already been conducted for approximately 7 years. In the past years, more and more students (from both Malaysian and other backgrounds) have joined leading to bigger teams and bigger groups. It evidently shows that the student community is strengthening through such events.

I also wanted to find out how the experience went for the participants and was able to interview Nurafiqah Yusof. She had participated in Badminton earlier in the day and this is what she had to say:

Have you played in events like these before?

“This was my first time attending such an event. Last year I hadn’t been involved in anything to do with Malaysian students. At the beginning of the event, i was sort of pumped up and nervous at the same time because I would be playing against or with people I had never met before. Basically playing with strangers. But as the event progressed, I felt much more comfortable with my teammates and it was refreshing to play with “strangers”.


Nurafiqah Yusof (centre)

I had only ever played the sports in high school on the school teams but it was different this time around because I was representing a Malaysian student organisation. Everybody at the event were friendly off the court but on the court, they meant business. It was great to see such talent in the respective sports though it did make me nervous because I had to play against them.


What did you think about the event made for Malaysians by Malaysians? 

I felt proud that they were Malaysians and they were representing our country so well in terms of their sporting abilities and their intelligence. It was a harmonious event with Malaysians from different schools competing against each other. It was the first time I had seen a large congregation of Malaysian students and it definitely made me feel like I was home. The best thing about the event was probably the fact that it brought together all these Malaysians from different unis and studying different things under one roof and “uniting” to represent their institutions.


What was the best thing about the day? 

The best thing about the day was that I got to play badminton. Though it wasn’t my best performance, I still enjoyed every moment of it because I was with my friends and it helped me release some stress. Because this is an annual thing (I believe), I would most certainly attend if again next year if I have the time and I can participate. If not, I will just settle for spectating and/or volunteering.” 

DSC_0953 (1)Sydney Malaysian Games

Clearly, I’m not the only one who enjoyed the event. Even though I was anxious at the start, I realized that I didn’t need to be. The environment was casual and comfortable, everyone was willing to get to know me and involve me in the fun. Cheering along with the audience and simply being part of the lively spirit made sport even more enjoyable than I had expected.

Thank you to the presidents of the group and everyone who had given me a warm welcome – audience and participants alike. If you are a fan of sport and would love to compete and be a part of a community, then do consider joining this event next year through your university group!

Photo credits: Sumaiyah Tasneem

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16 Funny Pics of uni life in Australia

Written by Entertainment, Student Life

1. Part-time lecturer, part-time baby sitter

2. Somehow, Harry Potter’s friend studies at USYD

3. Let’s build a snowman, Frozen after-effect 

4. Someone has a tough night  before the exam

5. My only Blanket

6. A Bromance in lecture

7. Nothing to beat with the wind and rain in Sydney

8. Another method to pay for his institution fee

9. We’re proud of being a UNSW-er

10. The master of cheating 

11. Practice makes perfect

12.  A panda and possum at UOW 

13. Life won’t be tough with a bottle of Hennessy

14. A portable kitchen in a student’s lab

15. One way to save on the electricity bill

16. Last but not least,

We have to learn to be patient while studying at uni

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