My graduation goals

Wow. I can’t believe it’s that time of year again when students from all around have either just finished their studies, are bracing themselves for summer semester or those lucky ones who have found themselves at the conclusion of their journey. Congratulations, one and all! You made it, however far you have made it along your journey, you are at least part of the way. Studying at university can really take you places that at times feel out of this world.

krisi graduation journey

Which one of these kinds of students am I, do you ask? I am the kicking-on kind. I have just reached the end of a 3-year bachelor degree and I am launching straight into honours. Now that I am moving into a whole new era of study, I have been considering what my goals are for the future.

The challenge I have accepted is further study. The goal I have set myself is to achieve honours of the first class and, consequently, a better chance of being accepted into postgraduate study. Wait, let me actually seriously consider that for a moment. That is a lot of 7s. Before I blast-off at the beginning of the year continuing on as a full-time student, I am really going to have to consider how much rocket fuel I have at this point in my studying career. After all, I don’t want to let my personal needs nor, dare I say it, grades fall victim to outer space!

krisi - victim of outer space

The ultimate question then, is to study full-time or to study part-time. Achieving the best GPA that I have ever dreamed of setting my sights on is going to be no mean feat. It is certainly going to require a lot of my attention to stay on-course to achieve that first class honours. Should I take the longer route that gives me the most time to navigate the asteroids or should I start the count down from 10, shut my eyes and prepare to blast-off along the most direct path?

Lucky for me, I have a bit of time on my hands to think about this before I decide which trip I will take. There is always going to be something great about being a full-time student, studying the maximum course load in order to get to that number one goal of a dream career faster. At the same time, there is a-whole-‘nother world out there that I haven’t even experienced yet. The idea of studying part-time, giving me extra time to study for each course, achieve academic success and have the opportunity to  start crossing off some of my other goals, like traveling, is incredibly tempting.

I am interested to know, what were the goals you set yourself after you finished your bachelor degree? Did you choose to complete further study or decide on another course of action? Who knows, maybe you even experienced the same dilemma as me. I would love to hear about your experiences after graduating!

You vs. Your BFFL. Dealing with peer competition: how to maintain friendships when competing for jobs or grades.

Ever since we were little, we’ve been taught that we’re all in competition with each other. In primary school we were given awards for the best macaroni necklace and in high school biology we learned about survival of the fittest.

So naturally, we’re inclined to become jealous of one another if we feel that they’re in the way of what we want.

This is ESPECIALLY not cool if the person in your way is your mate.

The great thing about going to university is that you get to hang out with like-minded people who are working towards the same or similar goals as you. However, this also means you’ll probably be competing against them to get a high grade or, eventually, a job.

Now I know what you’re thinking:

‘Eliza,’ you’re saying. ‘You’re so self-confident and well adjusted, you’d never get jealous of your mates… would you?’

Well guys, this will come as a massive shock to you, but I too have, from time to time, become jealous of my uni mates.

For what it's worth, we're all crazy

No matter what you’re studying, you’re probably going to go through an assignment situation where you have to compete for roles: project manager, group leader etc… In the media program, we have to compete against each other for our desired role when making films.

While this is a fantastic exercise because it’s how job selection usually happens in ‘the real world’, it’s also pretty awful. In the media program, every student has to stand up in front of the class and explain why they’re better than their friends at performing a particular role.

Ouch.

After going through this a few times during my degree, I’ve developed a couple of ways to deal with competing against my mates.

First of all, try to keep the competition as professional as possible.

job-competition
Remember that your friend is probably feeling just as uncomfortable competing against you as you are competing against them. Try to leave the competing in the classroom or interview room; once you’re outside the situation, try to focus on more positive aspects of your friendship. Also, avoid making personal attacks about your mate and focus more on how well you can do the job.

Keep in mind that if your friend gets the job you wanted, you will have gained an awesome contact in your desired industry, which could come in handy in the future.

The second thing to remember is that you are unique. You are one of a kind and you have different talents and skills to your friends.

you are unique - use this to your advantageGoing back to our high school ‘survival of the fittest’ lessons, we were taught that animals are in constant competition in order to uh… avoid ‘going to the farm’. However, another survival tactic animals have is to adapt and find their niche in order to contribute to the world order in their own special way. You can do this too! You just need to find out what you’re special talent is and how you can contribute to the working world order.
A good way to find out where your talents lie are in your grades; while your mate might get distinctions in the communication subjects, you might be better at research and therefore do better in analysis subjects. This could lead to a career in research. Sometimes our talents surprise us, and if this is the case, you might not be sure how they will help your career.

I’m really bad at most sports and I’m not very academic (seriously, if someone can explain long division to me I’ll give you my first-born), BUT I can talk under wet cement and I love questioning everything. While my skills weren’t appreciated too much at school, once I started studying media and journalism at uni I WAS IN MY ELEMENT.
This was because I had found my niche, my groove.

Once you’ve found your groove you can use this as a selling point when you have to compete against your friends. When you’re in an interview or doing an assignment, focus on your unique skills instead of comparing yourself to your friends.

Competition is a fact of life, but when it comes to competing with your friends try not to take it personally. Remember that you’re all just trying to survive in this sometimes brutal world and in the end your mates will be there to support you and help you out when possible.

To quote that one girl from Mean Girls, ‘I wish I could bake a cake filled with rainbows and smiles and we could all eat a piece and be happy’.

But that’s not how the world works unfortunately, so just focus on why you’re awesome and you’ll find that trying to get a job or a good grade won’t be as painful as Year 11 biology class.

The do’s and don’ts of student adventure time!

Guess what… university is out for the year! We made it! Guys and girls… we did it! Can you believe it? We now have months to relax and enjoy whatever we want to do. We are as free as a bird!

Now, I can imagine quite a few of you adventurous and fun-loving students are going to be heading out of here now that your tertiary education journey for the year is over. Let the travel and self-discovery journey begin!

adventure time - student travel

Do

  • Mention you are a student as often as possible! People often love to help out students when they’re travelling, because they know what it’s like trying to see the world on a student budget.
  • Keep a notepad with you and take it everywhere so you can write down things you like or things you want to know more about.
  • Try to book everything in advance. Once you’re in Europe, a good last-minute travel option is idbus.com!
  • Keep your student ID on you at all times. It will serve you as well as your passport.
  • Prepare some fun university stories to tell your hosts or the local barista. By sharing your experiences you’re likely to make new friends and maybe even get shouted a coffee!
  • Take lots of photos 

Don’t

  • Take your textbooks everywhere you go unless you have to.
  • Book your flights last-minute as there may be hidden fees.
  • Get lured into buying cheap ‘local products’ you think you’ll be able to resell. Do some research and use your head. You are a university student after all! When you get home, customs may not clear those great bamboo chairs you bought for $20 that the seller promised you’d be able to resell for $200.
  • Be so attached to your tour guidebook that you miss experiencing the places you travel to for yourself. You are a student, so explore and learn everything you can about the places you visit based on your own experiences.

The most important thing I have learned about travelling the world as a student is that there are a lot of incredible people out there and most of them are kind-hearted. Many of them WANT to help us struggling students, especially in places like Germany where higher education is FREE. Use your head, be smart and think before you do anything, but it can be OK to trust the people you meet.

When you get home after travelling, remember to share your adventures with others so that you inspire them to go on their own. My mission in life is to be able to tell my stories to my grandchildren and to tell them that my adventures helped others to go on their own.

clock  - uni student travel

If you don’t want to make the commitment of starting your own travel blog or website, there is a website dedicated to helping people share their lives, adventures and stories from stranger shores (www.onstrangershores.com).

With that, I think I can leave you brilliant people. I wish you the best of luck with your travels and will hopefully see you next year for the next round of study. Who knows, by then you guys might have a few travel tips to teach me!

We only have a limited amount of time on this earth, so let’s make it as amazing, magnificent, magical and awesome as it can be.

Live it. Write it. Inspire – José R. Bishop.

#Internlife

As you probably all know, I am about to graduate from studying a Bachelor of Applied Media. One major part of this degree has been gaining valuable work experienced in a relevant industry to my studies.

I was lucky enough to score my current internship with 612 ABC Brisbane after one of the presenters from the ABC came into USQ  with his producer to talk to us media students about his job. After his talk, he said that if there were any students who were interested in doing an internship with himself and his team, to email his producer.

I went out of my way to put up my hand, send the email and, a few months later, I was getting out of bed at 2AM and heading into 612’s office.

The timing of my original internship was perfect because I would work at the ABC from 4AM to 11AM, then head into uni or work. Now that I’ve been shifted to weekends, my uni schedule is less affected. This shows that it is possible to incorporate an internship into your study schedule.

Eliza at ABC - banana

Being able to spend time within the industry has been an amazing and eye-opening experience for me. I have gain so much from learning on-the-job as well as everything I’ve learned from going to university.

I have learned how to act within a workplace, how to use the equipment and software used by the ABC and, because I have been treated as an employee of the ABC, I have learned what it’s really like to work in the media industry… I just can’t wait to be there full time!

I have also made some great contacts and have been given a chance to showcase my passion and perseverance.

Eliza at ABC

So, for those of you transitioning from uni to the work force, I would recommend going out of your way to do some work experience or an internship because, in my opinion, actually getting out there and getting a first-hand experience of an industry is the only way to see what it’s really like.

Good luck!

Staying healthy when really busy

I present you all with the constant problem us uni students face each and every day…

chocolate vs apple - healthy study snack choicesOur busy selves glare at the chocolate when all of a sudden it transforms into Pitbull singing “I know you want me”. Yet, when we look over at the apple, its song lyrics go something like “stay with me, ‘cos I’m all you neeeeed”, Sam Smith style.

Or is this just me?

Nonetheless, because keeping healthy while really busy is challenging, I have put together 8 tips to help maintain healthy habits and wellbeing during a full-on schedule…

  1. Plan meals in advance.
    Take the time to plan what meals you will have during busy periods so that you can stock up your pantry and fridge with as many supplies possible. Not having to go grocery shopping and knowing what you are having each day helps prevent reverting to bad habits such as take-out because of time restrictions.
  1. Healthy snacks.
    While planning in advance, stock up with healthy snacks that you can take with you to uni/work or that can sit beside your computer while you study. We all find ourselves eating for no valid reason when busy, so it’s probably best we fuel ourselves with nutritious foods. The snacks on my list include yoghurt, pieces of fruit, nuts, dried fruit, muesli bars, crackers and low fat dip. This is the only way I have learnt to overcome the chocolate VS apple debate, otherwise it’s so easy to let the chocolate win you over for a sugar hit!

    P.S. I have found having no chocolate in the house helps!
    sugar cravings - resist the temptation!

  1. Stay hydrated.
    Being a uni student often means sitting at the computer for hours on end during busy periods. All of the important things, like drinking enough water throughout the day, are easily forgotten unless you are dying of thirst. I have now learnt to have a water bottle beside my computer at all times to avoid one of those “out of sight, out of mind” scenarios.
  1. View exercise as a priority, not an option.
    Talking from experience during busy times, exercise becomes something we “don’t have time” for. I have only recently begun to shake this bad habit after realising just how much better you feel after just 30 minutes of exercise a day. Whether it is a walk around the block, run on the treadmill while watching a lecture, Wii fit session, gym circuit or whatever else you would prefer, JUST DO IT!
  1. Get enough sleep.
    I am no expert on this tip. When it comes to getting enough sleep when life is hectic, I am as guilty as they come. For some reason, I become a night owl with the idea that staying up until ungodly hours of the night will induce productive work. The downside to this notion of mine is that sometimes the only outcome of this decision is the awesome greeting when opening your Word document that says “pick up where you left off 6 hours ago (3.30am)”. It is probably most wise to remember the advice of health professionals, particularly when life is crazy, and aim for between 7 and 8 hours of sleep each night to recuperate and allow the brain to function!
  1. Prepare frozen meals.
    If you find yourself constantly busy, put aside some time on weekends to prepare meals that can be frozen. That way, during the week, it is just a matter of defrost, heat and eat! And the bonus is, it’s healthy!
  1. Bring your planned meals to uni/work.
    Don’t let all your hard work go to waste. It is so easy to become tempted when out of the house to grab something naughty from the close-by cafeteria. This is avoided by taking your meals with you. P.S. Don’t forget the cutlery (advice from she who has done so)!
  1. Say no to stress in your life.
    Try not to make extra work for yourself when life is busy. Although our world would be disadvantaged without “yes” people, sometimes we need to learn to say no. Don’t overload yourself and find time to relax! The last thing we want is to become sick at a time we can least afford to be!

    Have you got any tips about staying healthy during hectic busy periods for me? I would love to hear them!

How to dress for success

Whether it is for work, placement or networking, dressing in corporate style is almost a full-time job on its own. So, I did my research and I came across this ‘fashion formula’. Mixing this formula with my own personal experience, I created this ‘how-to’ guide on dressing for success.

fashion formula for ultimate corporate style

Factors to consider

  • Daily schedule: Will it be a sedentary day in the office or, as is more likely in my profession, will it be a day out on the oval teaching a sports lesson? By dressing to suit your day’s agenda, you will be comfortable and prevent the stress of having to adjust your clothing while you are in the middle of something important!
  • Variety: If your wardrobe is full of corporate clothing and it’s simply a matter of choosing what to wear on any particular day, choose the dress or shorts over the likes of the pants you wore the day before (weather permitting). If you work with children, I can assure you they will still remember the pink blazer you wore previously and what day you wore it! You will find yourself repeatedly having to answer whether pink is your favourite colour, just because you wore it more than once in a week!
  • Something special: Some of us have that one accessory that always seems to lift our spirits, whether this is a piece of jewellery or a favourite pair of shoes. If this isn’t you, maybe now is the time to spoil yourself with something new. A confidence booster is the key to unlocking success in your day!
  • Weather: Take a look outside your bedroom window and check out the Weatherzone app before you get dressed to point you in the right direction. This is especially important in winter when the number of layers to be worn is always a significant decision!
  • Get to know the Dress Code: Pay attention to the people within the environment you are in as some workplaces require more or less ‘professional dress’ than others. You will feel much more relaxed if you feel as though you fit in with those around you.

Consider the outfit as a whole: Don’t be like me and forget about planning what shoes or jewellery you are going to wear until you go to walk out the door and realise you haven’t done this.  After finding ‘the fashion formula’, I will now be using this as a checklist when organising corporate attire!

Last-minute tips

  • Plan your outfits for the week on weekends, to save yourself from the frantic ironing you have to do with only five minutes before you need to leave. Tuesday’s outfit can always be swapped with Friday’s if need be… as my Mum would say ‘it feels better to be organised!’
  • The underlying element of dressing corporate style is comfort. If you aren’t comfortable, the other factors are likely to have a domino effect!
  • Create fun out of putting together your professional look. Embrace it and own it!

corporate style

       1 Basic (Black Top)+     1 Interest (Patterned Skirt)

+     1 Completer Piece (Bright Jacket)

+     Accessories (Necklace & Shoes)

How to travel on a student budget

Hola amigos!

Bienvenidos to another installment from the travelling student. Are all of you as excited as me that we only have 1 month left of university this semester? How incredible is that… I just feel like dancing!

Ok, fine, I won’t dance…

Now is probably the time all of you intelligent and adventurous people are gearing up to travel on your summer breaks. When I talk about my life as a travelling student people often get confused and say ‘but students are poor, how could they possibly travel?’ Travelling doesn’t have to be as expensive as everyone thinks. Of course, you can pay the $4000+ premiums to get an all inclusive ‘Euro Trip’, but I don’t really consider that travelling. If you’re keen to do some real travelling on a student budget, then follow me!

Before a trip I break down my expenses into 3 categories to ensure I don’t go burning a hole in my bank account.

1. Flights
Flights are mostly standardised, but if you pick it right, spend time checking the dates and play the waiting game, you may be able to snag a $850 return ticket from BNE to CDG (Charles De Gaulle airport in Paris) like I did. However, this is very much a luck/timing/preparation thing. Also, don’t leave booking your tickets until you have only one week before your departure, as your flight could end up being double the standard price (depending on the distance you are travelling).

qantas

2. Accommodation
This depends a lot on when and where you are travelling to, but as a student you can find great rates for accommodation with youth hostels, couch surfing or even try your luck with a work away, where you do jobs in order to pay for bed and board. (Follow up story of mine in a Castle in South of France to come.)

workaway

3. Activities and living expenses (day-to-day)
Once again, if you are visiting a small town in western Ecuador you wont have much need for this, but if you are bopping about London town you will definitely need a larger wallet.

One way I have been able to slice my expenses down is by:

  1. Using my student card as much as possible (people understand what it’s like) and
  2. Cooking at home. This is a lot cheaper than going out to restaurants for every meal.
  3. By offering to wash dishes in a restaurant in exchange for cooking lessons or use of the kitchen, you can learn how to make a special delicacy from each place you visit. I have done this, and I now know how to make Pain au Chocolat, Baguette and marvelous patisserie products.

Win-win!

STA student travel
Finally, there is one service that really helped me on my journey as a student. I recently flew Paris to Brisbane for three quarters of the price on Emirates thanks to STA travel. www.statravel.com.au

statravel

Not only do they provide cheaper flights and great customer service, but you can get an ‘International Student Identity Card’ which has served as an ID for me all around the world.

Moreover, on a global scale it offers over 42,000 discounts in 125 countries and 40% off international airfares from their website. Locally, STA offers exclusive deals for their members, along with 20% off 2500 restaurants and cafes within Australia. With your STA discount, you can also get $11 movie tickets, discounts on software and a FREE ISIConnect travel sim card. The list goes on, but I’m sure we all have study to get back to…

I can already picture us sitting on the bouncy chair of an Emirates/Qantas flight to an exciting destination in a month’s time.

Adios for now, and happy studying!

We got this.

Why you should chase work experience

Intern life meme

Today I’m going to chat to you all about the importance of work experience.

Now, a lot of you guys out there are probably just about to graduate from your degrees (yay!!) and start looking for jobs (boooooo!!).

I know, I know, you can see the finish line just over the horizon and all you’re thinking about is your six-month trip to America that will be starting as soon as your last exam ends.

But, just before you too deep in your thoughts of free time, ask yourself this; if I walked into an engineering firm, or a nurse’s station, or tried to start my own business…would I have any idea what to do?

The answer is probably “nope. Not a clue.”

Actually, your answer would probably be something like “I know the theory behind it, so how much harder can actually doing it, be?”

Well actually…in my experience, it’s a lot harder…

Now don’t get me wrong, I understand and respect the fact that you’ve spent the last three to five years working hard and pulling all-nighters to get your degree, and now you have all of the theory under your belt.

However, theory can only get you so far.

For example, let’s say you’re studying nursing and midwifery. Now, it’s one thing to look at a textbook and sit in a lecture room listening to someone talk you through your role during childbirth. However, once you get into a birthing suit with a screaming woman, a fainting partner and you’re up to your elbows in goodness-knows-what fluids…it’s a different story.

And for those of you who have just started studying, or are about to, this practical experience is a fantastic way for you to discover if the degree you’re studying is really something you want to pursue for the rest of your career.

Now in a lot of degrees, this experience is included (not specifically the child-birth one but you see my point.) You are either sent into a classroom, or a hospital, or a radio studio as part of your learning. However, a lot of the time the organisation you’re with will understand that you’re there to get a grade and that you really had very little choice about being there.

Therefore, I would recommend going out of your way to find extra experience, as I have done.

I started doing work experience back in high-school when I went to Charleville and worked on a cattle station for a week.

Three things happened:

  • I was the first girl in the past hundred years of the school’s history to go out of my way to learn about agriculture.
  • I accidentally crashed a car through the property owner’s fence.
  • I learned how to fix a fence.

Anyway the point is I went out of my way and learned something I simply couldn’t from a textbook… and also that trying to stop a manual car with no brakes is no easy task…

A year later I did a week of work experience with the local radio station, fast-forward five years and here we are- I’m about to graduate from the bachelor of applied media, majoring in journalism, about to head into the world of radio.

So for those of you transitioning from uni to the work force, I would recommend going out of your way to do some work experience or an internship. Just…try not to crash a car through a fence…

Juggling a career, family and study

First things first… tadaaa!

superstudy

There’s a superhero in each of us, albeit maybe not quite a latex-clad, dark, mysterious and cape-bearing kind! It’s no mean feat as a mum or dad to juggle school drop-offs, a job and university studies… it takes some awesome skills! We all need to start by giving ourselves a pat on the back. Whether you are a current studying parent, a parent, or maybe even working and just considering studying, I have some hints and tips on how I juggle it all.

Once you start your degree at university, it is important to know that you are not alone! There really are all kinds of university services that can help support you in achieving your dreams. In my time at USQ, I have personally have used The Learning Centre for some free advice on assignment writing etiquette, been to see Student Services and gained some career advice from the university’s career’s guidance officer. These services were particularly helpful in clearly establishing my career goals and were a great resource in my job hunting. I would encourage everyone to give them a go. I really can’t speak highly enough about the support I received.

krisi 2

When you are in the midst of juggling everything in your life, please don’t forget that your family can partake in this awesome journey that you are on (the kids included). By this I mean, from getting help with cooking dinner to making studying a fun experience, your kids can join in. As my son has grown older, he loves to ask me if I need my text book or if he can have a ‘read’ himself. This is very cute, so remember to take photos, as these are all special memories!

I find it really important to keep a diary. This way I can best manage my shifts at work, assignment due dates and special family occasions. It is just a really visual way of remaining as motivated as the day you started and keeping on track. The university sends out a super-large calendar at the beginning of each year. I pop this up on the wall for all of my family to see. I must admit that it has gotten me the odd dinner or two cooked curtsey of my family!

Occasionally I have taken a course off-campus and online. This meant that in the second year of my degree, I had some more free time during the week to get more work done. I really enjoyed listening to the lectures online, and I even downloaded some as audio files to listen to while on long trips in the car.

To sum it all up, I linked in with some support services at university, enjoyed getting my family involved, managed my time with ease by using a calendar and took the opportunity for flexible study options when needed. Everyone is different, but with the goals that I have kept in mind along the way, I found these methods to be key in my success along the way!

superstudy1

What are some of the things that you put in place while juggling carer, family and study? I’d love to hear some really creative brainstorming!

Your A-Z Moving Away from Home to Study Guide

I don’t want to scare you or anything, but moving away from home to study is really daunting… if you aren’t organised. There are so many things to think about, do, plan, pack and organise. It’s definitely a ‘who said being a grown up was fun?’ moment, but trust me, it is all worth it in the end.

move out of homeBetween my experiences and having friends with similar experiences, I have put together the ultimate ‘A-Z Moving Away from Home to Study Guide’.

A: Application for study! There’s a reason this is first on the list. You need to get accepted into your course before you arrange anything else. Pour your heart and soul into achieving success in order to get there.

B: Books and stationery! Do some research on what textbooks you are going to need before starting uni as this will most likely require saving some $$$ before your big move.

C: Clothes! Packing my clothes is up there on my ‘hardest chore’ list. My wardrobe space at college didn’t compare to my wardrobe at home, so it’s important that you do this a couple of weeks in advance to prioritise the ‘I will wear this a lot’, over the ‘But I like this top!’

D: Desk for studying! If you aren’t planning on going to college, buying or moving a desk with heaps of space is essential. A large dining table also comes in handy in times of need, just ask my housemates who deal with my assignment mess around due dates (they may advise you otherwise)!

E: Entertainment! At times throughout the uni semester, it may seem as though you have no time for reading your favourite book or catching up on your favourite TV show, but do make sure you have something on-hand to use as a ‘I need to walk away from this assignment to be inspired when I come back’ tool.

F: Family time! Your life becomes very busy after relocating and starting study, so spend as much time with your loved ones as you can before you go.

G: Government funding! Moving away from home can certainly come at a cost but there are options for some students relocating for study purposes, so make sure you check these out to see if you are eligible.

H: Home reminders! I won’t lie to you, you WILL get homesick, so make your new place feel like home to lessen the pangs. My favourite reminder of home is a crotchet tea towel from my grandmother!

I: Internet! Your best friend as a uni student. Make sure there’s a will and a way to have it when studying.

J: Job! If you know you are going to need a job after working out your uni student budget, try to prepare a resume before moving.

K: Knowledge and advice! Although you may not always agree with them, consider the advice your parents give you and let them support you in your new journey.

L: Laptop! You will depend on this every single day so make sure you have essential software installed that you’ll need for study.

M: Money! Saving doesn’t seem very enticing before you go but you will thank yourself later!

N: Necessities! If this is your first move, pack only the things you will use every day, so that the unpacking process is far less painful.

O: Orientation Day and/or Open Day! Arrange your moving plans so that you can attend one of these days to meet new people while familiarising yourself with the uni and its facilities.

P: Photos! Sometimes having a little snapshot to make you smile will be what gets you through stressful and/or homesick times.

Q: Quality down time! There’s nothing worse than starting uni feeling stressed from moving – make sure you take time for yourself, to refresh before you start study.

R: Rent or a place to live! If you know you want to go live on-campus at college, apply as soon as you can so you don’t miss out on an awesome opportunity. If you want to rent, keep an eye on real estate procedures so you are prepared for the largest process of moving away from home!

S: Scholarships! USQ offer many different subsidies to help make your uni transition so much easier. Have a look at what scholarships you might be eligible for at http://www.usq.edu.au/scholarships.

T: Transport! If you don’t own a car or have a license, research public transport so it’s not a massive problem when you move.

U: Utilities! If you plan on renting, there are connections that need to be made before you move in, particularly electricity, phone and/or gas… unless you want to eat by candlelight and have cold showers!

V: Van or truck to move your belongings!

W: Weekend bag! Pack a medium-sized bag that will fit all the essentials you need if you decide to go home or away for the weekend.

X: X-tras! AKA Extras. Pack a couple of the little things that hold sentimental value to you and you know you won’t be able to go long periods of time without.

Y: Your very own office chair! Ok, so maybe this option is a little on the lavish side, but I absolutely love mine, and a comfy chair is essential for long days of study.

Z: Zen! Meditate, relax, have positive thoughts and most of all, enjoy this huge new journey of your life!

Have you got anything to add?