Assignment Season

The dreaded assignment season is upon us. The first six weeks have felt like a breeze. You’ve gone to class, you’re feeling full of knowledge and you’re asking yourself “who even said university was hard?”

You get given your first assignment, but it doesn’t worry you. You’ve got plenty of time! All your other classes are seemingly just as easy. You’re having the time of your life.

Your second class has its first assignment, more than likely a 1000+ word essay. You take a few deep breathes but you’re still okay. You’ve still got plenty of time, but a couple weeks later, you’re starting to feel the beginnings of panic reach your core.

Third assignment comes in plus you’ve got a speech you have to research and revise before your next class. Without you even realising your workload has multiplied sevenfold. You’ve got major assessments for each class and minor homework tasks you must accomplish before class.

At this point, horror is all you know.

The main problem of assignment season isn’t just the assignments themselves, it’s the fact that you’ve reached a midway in the semester and your motivation levels are low and your procrastination levels high. Even B grade movies are a better idea than actually looking at your assignment but you can’t afford the luxuries you’ve so come to love and appreciate in life. All you can do is stare at your blank computer screen and hope, nay; pray that you can get each assignment done.

Goodbye social life, TV addictions and movie appreciation nights. Hello word counts and endless nights of typing.

I wish I could say there’s a silver lining to assignment season, but unfortunately there is not. So this is where my advice lies, don’t procrastinate and tell yourself “you’ll start tomorrow” because it’s a lie. There’s a reason lecturers give us assignments months before they’re due. Use that time to at least make a start to avoid, in my opinion, the most stressful time of the year. And hey, before you know it, it’ll be the yearly break! So start typing my fellow students and the misery will be over soon.

Peace,

Morgan

Welcome to La Trobe!

La Trobe Agora

La Trobe Bundoora – Agora. Photo credit: Olivia Larobina

Congratulations on becoming a student at one of La Trobe’s beautiful campuses! Whether you’re straight out of high school, returning to studies later in life, or just making a change, we hope you love La Trobe as much as we do.

Our aim is to develop the blog into one hat all La Trobe students, -past, future and present- with experiences and stories can relate to. We hope everyone enjoys reading our First Year Blog, and look forward to some of you potentially joining as bloggers for 2015.

There will be some changes to the blog this year, namely in the style of content. We want to allow bloggers to have much more creative freedom, giving them the power to write about topics that they are interested in. We want to shift the blog’s focus from being purely about advice and uni updates, to including personal anecdotes about positive experiences at La Trobe.

Share what you love!

Whether you’re interested in sports or fashion, entertainment or social justice, events or interviews, we want you to blog about it’s a part of your first year experience.

So if you study at Bendigo look out for Tom, and if you study at Bundoora look out for Olivia. We’ll be around recruiting new bloggers to join us this year.

We’ll keep you updated once recruitment officially begins. For now, enjoy O-Week 🙂

Finances are stresses

Finances, we all hate them but we also know how important they are. How many of you out there don’t want to look at your account statement because you’re just too scared to know? I’m willing to wager about 99 per cent of you are nodding right now.

I’m nodding as well. Money matters stress me out, more than it should. My bottom draw is filled with receipts that I don’t even want to think about. Stored there for another day. Getting that account statement in the mail makes me want to cry.

But what is it about money that stresses uni students out so much?

Obviously majority of the time it is because university is so crazily expensive. Looking at my student account and how much I owe the government is not the best experience I’ve ever had. But those funds are necessary for where we want to go in life. It’s all the other spending that’s the biggest problem.

Clothes here, eat out there. Things that we somehow convince ourselves we definitely need – but the last time I checked, I’ve already got a whole wardrobe of clothes and most of which I don’t even wear!

My names Morgan and I’m a shopaholic.

I know now that taking advice from a self-proclaimed shopaholic is pretty ironic, however I guess I do have the experience. So listen up, and hopefully I say something that resonates with you or could help.

Here are my trusty tips (that I am even starting to use)

  1. Make a finance spreadsheet

I know – borrrring! But it actually works. I’ve got my expenses all on one easily accessible Exel spreadsheet. So I can see how much I’m spending and discover what is not necessary to buy.

  1. Prioritise

Decide on a monthy or weekly basis how much you want to spend in general, then categorise them into a social budget, food, bills etc. That way, you know how much you’re allowed to spend and being strict with yourself is actually a good thing. You’ll feel guilty if you do overspend!

  1. Leave the card at home

When you go to the shopping centre, try to have a clear idea of exactly what you want, price it and get out that physical money so you know how much your are actually spending. So you can forget about carrying that plastic card around, leave your card at home. Less temptation!

    4. Budgeting app

But if all fails, there’s probably an app for budgeting you can rely on.

Morgan

 

 

New semester buzz

Does anyone else get excited about a new semester? I find myself anticipating the arrival of a new semester, especially after such a long period of time where I didn’t know what to do with myself.

A new semester always arrives with the promise of new beginnings, of new friendships and relationships, of learning something new and experiencing things I didn’t experience the semester before.

For a while everyone is excited. People smile a little brighter and talk a little more. Everyone tries new things and pushes their boundaries a little further than before. This period doesn’t last long, but it is a time I love.

It is a time brimming with promises and opportunities that can all become reality if we take the initiative to seize them.

The excited buzz around the campus shall slowly fall to hum as people close themselves off in their own world once again, becoming comfortable with their friends, new and old, and no longer take the initiative to reach out until the next year.

When I sense this happening it saddens me but because this happens for a short period of time is why I grow so excited. All good things must come to an end. However, we aren’t there yet.

So let’s embrace this time and enjoy it to its fullest. Let’s enjoy the buzz before it quietens to a hum.

Ashlee Bodger

Welcome Latrobians !

A warm welcome back to those students who are entering their second semester, and a big welcome to new La Trobe students!

If you’ve just joined us and you’re not sure how things work, don’t freak out! Settling into uni life is easy, there are loads of handy resources and information on the New Students section of the La Trobe site, so make sure you check it out!

LT

Here’s a quick breakdown of a few essential tips which you’ll need to know to survive second semester:

  • If you’re new to uni it’s a good idea to get Ready4Uni at La Trobe’s online orientation. It basically helps you make that transition from ordinary boring life to exciting uni life!
  • It’s no secret that life as a student isn’t easy. It involves managing your time, generally living on a budget and making new friends (if you don’t want to be a loner, which, let’s be honest that’s pretty much everybody). Check out how to be not only an exemplary student but also maintain a decent social life at our Life as a student page.
  • Some top tips from experienced students – Don’t be afraid to ask for help, get involved with student clubs (after all isn’t that what uni’s all about?!), go to classes and manage your workload. Get inspired by reading more smart and practical tips from La Trobe’s experienced students here.  We promise you’ll be thanking us later.
  • Finally, the new student checklist is a must for confused or curious students, check it out and get excited!

We hope you have an enjoyable second semester and we look forward to hearing what you get up to! Feel free to share your La Trobe first year experiences with us by emailing newstudents@latrobe.edu.au

Have a happy and safe second semester (:

Uni is changing my life

Hey there chums!

I don’t know about you but these last few weeks have been completely and utterly life changing. Not only are we as first years all going through a new phase in our lives but we are also gaining new experiences and constantly challenging ourselves, or at least I am.

I recently just moved from the beautiful tropics of Far North Queensland to Bendigo and let me tell you, it’s not just the scenery that’s different. For me, my whole world is different. More than I ever thought possible. I feel like I’ve stepped into an alternate reality, watching myself through a screen.

In the past four months I have moved out of home, away from my hometown, away from friends, family, my job and my high school.  Now I’m living in my own home, spending my weekends shopping for furniture and kitchen supplies, driving my recently purchased car, going to university and learning how to provide for myself.

This is a huge step for someone like me. I had to make a choice to either stay or go. It was either all or nothing, and I couldn’t let it be nothing. So now my new life is exciting, invigorating, stressful and challenging in more ways than one, but I wouldn’t do it any other way.

Lately I’ve found myself feeling an overwhelming sense of inspiration. I’m becoming more and more passionate about the things I’m doing, the people I’m meeting and the places I’m going. I keep telling myself over and over again, this is exactly where I’m supposed to be.

This moment here and now is the beginning of a hopefully long and worthwhile journey. It is my goal this year to prove myself to all those who ever doubted me, to live a life I desperately want to live and experience everything worth experiencing.

I may sound like a typical newbie to the big wide world but I don’t care. This is my chance to learn, explore and grow despite all odds.

Oh and lucky for me Latrobe will be a huge part of this journey so fingers crossed it treats me well!

– Findingkira

S-T-U-D-Y-I-N-G, what does that spell? Procrastination.

Week six is here along with the glorious deadlines for assignments, if you haven’t freaked out yet I salute you.

To quote a very insightful wizard Albus Dumbledore

“It is our choices…that show what we truly are, far more than our abilities”.

So start making good choices right now and put down that phone and get writing.

If you’ve come straight from high school like myself – you’re most likely looking at these assignments and thinking how do I write this? The thing is its okay if you don’t know how to write it; all you have to do is ask for help.

Ask your tutors or your lectures and don’t forget about the first year advisers. These people are here to help you and make this transition as smooth as possible so ask their advice and clarify any queries you have.

So after opening your word document to begin writing you won’t feel confused. You wont feel the need to begin skimming through Facebook. Instead, you will be able to look at that empty word document and have the words flow through your fingertips.

So make good choices and don’t put that studying off.

Start writing your assignments because at the end of the day it’s your future which will benefit from it.

By Adriana

 

Stay connected with UCROO

UU UCROO stands for ‘University Crew’ and is the University’s private social network. Think Facebook, but with an academic twist. It allows you to connect with other students and staff at La Trobe, through an online community.

This is a user-friendly virtual space where you can ask questions; especially those urgent ones you have just before that final exam or assessment. You can also join or form groups that interest you, create study groups and collaborate on coursework with classmates.

For new students in particular, you can use UCROO to get to know the people in your course and year level. The Mentor Program available through UCROO is an excellent resource, as uni mentors post frequently and can steer you in the right direction, especially if you’re stuck with an essay or just want to have a chat/rant about uni.

Ucroo photo

You can also keep up to date with what’s happening around campus through the UCROO university feed. Staff and students provide you with information on the latest events, resources, services and support programs for students.

There is also a feed that specifically relates to your year level, for example ‘the first years feed’ will only post about first year events or relevant information related to first years. This is really useful; so make sure you regularly check this resource.

One of the most popular features on UCROO is the timetable sharing function. This allows you to enter your timetable and match up classes or breaks with other students, making it 10 times easier to organise lunch dates and study sessions with your mates!

Whatever way you choose to use UCROO, have fun with it. It’s a unique university support network, so make the most of it, and stay connected to your university campus.

Connect with UCROO http://www.ucroo.com.au/  

Download the app for iPhones (Android app is coming soon).

If you need help logging in or would like more information contact team@ucroo.com.

Don’t forget to ‘Like’ UCROO on Facebook for regular tips and advice!