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Message to students - 29 September, 2021

Message to students - 29 September, 2021

Dear students, for those of you on mid-session recess, I hope you are enjoying the break, taking the time without classes to slow down, catch up on any reading or assessments and refocus your energy.

This time is an opportunity to find more balance, so try to get some time away from screens and avoid the digital fatigue we’re all very familiar with. , Dr Judy Pickard, has some helpful tips for this.

For those still in session, I hope you are having a productive week.

Our Pro Vice-Chancellor for Students, Professor Julia Coyle, and her team will run our first ever UOW Student Mental Health Survey from 27 September 2021 to 29 October 2021. Student mental health is very important to us, and by asking you for your honest feedback, we hope to understand more about how we can best support our students and their needs. If you have an opportunity, please take the time to respond to the survey, it really is crucial to understanding the student position and your feedback could have a real and lasting impact on improving student mental health.

As you may have heard, the NSW Government has confirmed the plan to . International students are a much-valued part of our community. The different cultural perspectives they bring greatly enriches the diversity of campus life and all students’ learning experiences. Having worked closely with our sector and governments to explore ways to bring about the safe return of international students, we are delighted that we may soon be welcoming small numbers back to our campuses.

Students looking for work, this is probably the best thing you can be doing for your community right now. With casual, temporary part-time and temporary full-time positions going, the Illawarra Shoalhaven Local Health District (ISLHD) is currently looking for individuals like you to help future-proof our community’s healthcare system against COVID-19. Staff for both clinical and non-clinical roles are needed for work in their network of hospitals, virtual care centre, Special Hospital Accommodation and Community Health Accommodation, contact tracing team, testing clinics, and vaccination clinics across the region. You will be making your mark on history, working together with a great team to support, vaccinate and treat as many people as possible against COVID-19.

As you have seen through our multiple vaccination activities and campaigns, we are really encouraging everyone in our community to be vaccinated. This is vital in taking care of our own health and our community.

Lastly, Daylight Savings is just around the corner, and as most locals know, this small change tends to mark the beginning of summertime (despite happening in Spring). For our international students who are new to it, Daylight Savings is the practice of setting the clocks forward one hour from standard time to make better use of the natural daylight. It begins at 2am on the first Sunday of October (this year it’s Sunday 3 October) and should automatically update on your smartphones and computers (though only if they’re set to Australian Eastern Standard Time). It can be a confusing time though; I’ve certainly made the mistake of getting up one hour later than I’d hoped to in the past – fingers crossed not this time!

Stay safe and enjoy the long weekend (don’t forget, that’s this coming Monday, 4 October).