Fashion’s holy season has arrived and there is no shortage of outfits to admire as this years Spring Racing Carnival gets underway.

Setting the stage at the season launch yesterday with frocks for fashion lovers across the nation, Myer ambassador Rachael Finch officially opened the spring carnival in a light pink gown, adorned by flowers and a mesh fascinator to graze her face.

Favourites for trackside attire are planned months in advance, boasting on-trend styles and with a certain emphasis on accessorising and attention to detail.

I’ve put together a list of five important considerations to ensure you’re set for a day at the races:

  1. DO dress for the occasion – The Spring Racing Carnival is as much about the gowns as it is the racing. Dress accordingly to the prestige of the occasion in striking, elegant and on-trend outfits and you will feel at home. Traditional lace midi dresses, high-wasted skirts and floral prints or bursts of colour are always a safe bet.
  2. DON’T wear stilettos to a trackside event – The chunkier the heal the better! Be practical and wear shoes you can travel the day in, stilettos on grass and un-level ground are a recipe for disaster.
  3. DO give attention to your hair and/or headpiece – The crowning jewel to your outfit is what sits atop your head. Whether it be a simple metal headband, a beautifully millinered fascinator or a wide-brimmed hat, these staple accessories can make or break your outfit.
  4. DON’T be optimistic about the weather (especially in Melbourne!) – Spring weather can be unpredictable at best. Come prepared with a coat, shawl or small umbrella in case of emergencies.
  5. DO accessorise! – An average outfit can become a show stopper if the right accessories are added in the same way attention can be detracted from a stunning frock if no accessories are there to compliment it. Match or contrast with the colour of your outfit and note necklines and sleeves for the perfect finish.



Image: Rachael Finch @ Spring Carnival Launch

My two cents for my two semesters

I’ve covered some events and stories at La Trobe University Bundoora, around Melbourne, and featured some articles of what it’s like to be an overseas student in Australia. But for my last piece, I want to write about me.

I interviewed a former Bhutanese refugee who’s now running for public office in Moreland, and apart from the issues he aims to address in the city, he spoke about what it means to be a migrant here in Australia. He points out that despite the multiculturalism and diversity in Australia, communities in suburbs do not come together in joint celebration. Adding that integrating people of different ethnic origins is a struggle that still needs work in the country.

It made me think about disposition as a possible migrant and what challenges I’ll be facing.

My two semesters in La Trobe have been a constant adjustment. Not always pleasant but indeed necessary. I’ve mentioned on a previous post of what it’s like to be an overseas student in Australia, and it for the most part it was negative. Having to adjust to the language, lack of context with the social environment, and no family. Well, after two tough semesters I’ve learned a couple of things that changed me for the better.

Hopefully this can help other overseas students.

Be bold.

Don’t linger around. Do it. When you want something, go ask for it (politely). When you think you are mistreated, speak up. When you’re seeking help from your lecturers, don’t be tentative, be definite.

Your confidence and courage will scare people who are timid, and you may sometimes appear arrogant. But do not falter, your personality will attract success and it will grant you opportunities.

Be assertive.

It’s your obligation to make them know you. When you’re in a place where nobody knows who you are, and nobody will really bother to, you have to find ways for them to think twice. Remember, you chose to be here, and you have to accept that you might have to exert more effort in gaining certain things than the locals. Therefore, you have to dance along with music.

Do volunteer work, join a club, attend events, and meet some people. If you want to change you have to experience discomfort.

Be composed.

Always remain calm whether you’re ecstatic or distressed. Don’t make impulsive decisions when you are happy, because the danger is that when your expectations are not met, the recovery is almost impossible. When you are lonely, breathe. Remember you are just in school, and you are allowed to make mistakes.

In the end, it’s all about how much you want something and what you’re willing to pay for it.


I guess somehow some migrants feel like these animals. They are there and they are a part of society, but somehow they still don’t belong. If you feel alone out there, please know that you aren’t.

By Haj Songcuya


Your Next Read: The Girl on the Train


Are you looking for something to read over the break? Maybe something gut-churning, nail-biting and mind boggling? Look no further than The Girl on the Train, written by Paula Hawkins.

The premise seems simple enough; the unreliable, alcoholic protagonist Rachel takes the train to work every day and watches a perfect couple in their house outside her window as she travels past. As she does, she wonders about and envies their seemingly perfect marriage. Then one day on her way to work, Rachel sees something happening in that house that completely turns her world upside down. Later that day, she believes she is somehow involved in a murder and because of her alcoholic blackouts, she doesn’t remember how.

As she untangles her blurred past and complex connection to the ‘perfect couple’, secrets and lies are exposed. Along for the ride are Emma and Megan, two more first person narratives to add layers to the plot. The explanation may seem blasé but believe me, revealing some things about the narrative only spoils the enjoyment of you finding out yourself.

Hawkins perfectly fleshes out the three main female protagonists and readers become legitimately invested, even though you may pre-empt their fates. The non-linear narrative is confusing at first (the novel taking place between 2012 to 2013) but it doesn’t stop you in your tracks.


Repeatedly dubbed the next Gone Girl, the novel is not for the faint hearted and should not be read just before bedtime. Despite making you second guess catching public transport ever again, The Girl on the Train is as addictive as Rachel’s obsession with the murder. Once you start reading, you are afraid to put it down.

If the novel doesn’t feed your hunger for psychological thrillers, check out the novel’s newly released film adaption, with actress Emily Blunt portraying Rachel.

I hope everyone has a relaxing break and best wishes for the upcoming exams!

Oh Captain My Captain

Jordan Kallady is the captain that any Southern University Games (SUGS) basketball team would kill for. He’s not just driven on the court – off the court he’s hard working as well.

Jordan is studying a Bachelor of Health Science and a Masters in Health Education Management. Jordan is in his fifth and final year. He will be graduating at the end of the year.

“Majority of my education has gone towards project management, as there are new advancements in the field through computer systems. On top of that, sorting out legal requirements around medical records, more funding for a hospital, clinical coding and program development.”

Even though Jordan is finishing his degree at the end of the year. It’s never too late to change your mind about what you want to do in life.

“I couldn’t imagine myself sitting behind a desk in the next 40 years. That is why I’m changing to Para-med next year, after I graduate.”

Jordan would be described as a very active person, who has ingrained leadership qualities. These strengths were utilised in this years SUGS when he was captain of the basketball team. “Captain Softie” the boys called him.


“I’ve been on 4 SUGS so far and the 2016 SUGS was definitely the best by far. Everyone was close on SUGS and became even closer after.”

A message from Jordan to the 2016 Basketball team this year:

“I enjoyed being your captain so much because everyone on the team was a good person, as well as a great basketball player.”

Jordan may be playing again next year either on La Trobe’s team as captain again or maybe on another? I guess you’ll have to wait and see.

By Brianne Keogh

Berlin Alternative Fashion Week: An Overview


They might be half way around the world, but Berlin’s Alternative Fashion Week has turned heads everywhere.

With psychedelic and futuristic designs, the alternative runways showcased a new era of fashion: alternative, out-there and non-restrictive.

International designers flocked from around the globe to make a name for themselves in the growing alternative fashion world, where colours collided and boundaries are pushed.

Nixi Killick, an independent Melbourne based designer, was among those who took to the stage. Killick has been storming her way to the top since graduating from fashion at RMIT, creating a ‘Colourtribe’ or followers.

The creative soul has an artistic background that gives her designs an extra edge. Featuring bright colours and techno prints, Killick’s designs embrace a realm of creativity for the modern free spirit.

Killick’s Berlin appearance was no exception, focusing on neutral base tones with flashes of intense colour and digital prints.

Other standout designers included Croatian-based Nika Cuic, whose monochrome garments emphasised chic individuality through experimenting with textures and shapes. Malaysian label Pearly Wong showcased a line of unisex, monochrome clothing, with structured lines and cuts.

And Danish label Denim Project brought back the past with a line of funky denim, stripes and colourful jumpers.

Berlin Fashion Week proved, once again, to be a platform for the inner daydreamer to relish and expression to blossom. Its situation in one of the world’s most creative cities has cemented Berlin’s place in the fashion world – both unique and exciting.

14463228_10209245301561885_8526827555517852562_n14519851_10209245307362030_1930503400134228160_n*SOURCE: Michael Wittig, Berlin 2016 <

By Alanah Frost

Student Elections

As a first year coming from a high school where captains and prefects were chosen via a very structured and teacher administration driven system, walking into the Agora a couple weeks ago was quite the shock. I had been forewarned, at least to an extent, by social media. The week long near constant war stories of people being chased down, pulled by the arms, and conversed with when having headphones in.

It sounded like an exaggeration. I figured, hey, maybe these were just some outliers. How wrong I was. At one of the staircases I needed to use, there were no less than 6 people waiting with pamphlets and fliers to tell me what to do. I had my headphones in, hood on, was looking down and walking quite fast, but even this wasn’t enough. The archetype of the teenage boy who hates everything and talks to no one. That was my impersonation. Yet still they tried to give me things and talk to me.

We had a campaigner come into one of our classes and give us a spiel on why we should vote for their party. Up to this point I had been blissfully ignorant of not only the promises and goals of the parties, but everything about them, including their names. She talked about a single issue that her party would fix. Sure, this was geared towards media students in a media class, but my friend summed it up perfectly; “Why on Earth would we vote for them just because of one thing? She talked for 10 minutes about one thing that we have no experience with.”

Theoretically, we should care about politics, even on the university level. It is deciding who is in charge, what decisions get made, where the money you spend goes. However, some people just don’t. Some people are just at university to learn. Some people don’t use the library; don’t need laptop charging stations or nap rooms. Looking at the list of promises made by the victors, United, there is literally nothing on the list that will affect me in any way, other than “improved lighting”.

Do the student elections matter? Probably more than I, or most people online, seem to think, however it matters much less than the campaigners want everyone to believe. Next time around, everyone should just hope against hope that the people running have some common sense and decency to not assault potential voters.

By James Wallace