Campus has gone quiet now exam period has begun and many students are working hard on their last essays and assignments for the semester.

La Trobe did its best to counter the rising stress levels of the past few weeks with plenty of relaxing activities during Stress Less Week and SWOT Vac. I for one was pleasantly surprised by this, because I have never experienced something like it in my home country (the Netherlands).

First thing’s first: the food. Heaps of it.

La Trobe seems to understand students. Free food is the way to go! These weeks I’ve seen barbecues for lunch, breakfasts with anything from toast and cereals to pancakes and egg rolls, pizza dinners and all kinds of food trucks. The perfect combination of not having to buy groceries and not having to cook is a sure way to take some of the stress out of everyday student life.

 

Stress relief activities

What I would really like to take home with me when leaving Australia are the fun stress relief activities. Food is available at any campus (although often far from free), but it was good to see a university taking a proper look at what students need and actually doing something with this information. Counseling and study groups are great ways to help you if you get stuck with your studies or you’re drowning in stress, but there’s an important balance between spending enough time on your studies and taking a break and living your life. La Trobe appears to have realised this and offered help with not just the studying part of uni-life, but the relaxing part as well, which I found to be a good and refreshing approach.

 

Even more support

Next to supporting three meals a day by offering food, there was support for the sporting activities that tend to get sidetracked a bit by exams. Students were invited to get out of their rooms and work out some of their stress with actual workouts through classes in self-defence, zumba, yoga and even some meditation.

For even more relaxation, there were ample opportunities to cuddle with cute and fluffy animals, such as the goats and bunnies at the Simpson Lawn Festival during Stress Less Week and the visiting Border Collies during SWOT Vac. These furry friends made everyone forget their troubles for a while and it was a great part of what is almost the last of my days at La Trobe.

 

Good luck everyone!

Good luck to everyone during these last few weeks of the semester and of course I hope to see you at the end of exams party!

By: Eva de Feber, Chisholm College