It could be said with certainty that the terms ‘Coronavirus’ and ‘COVID-19’ which were unheard of until just a few months ago are now running through the minds of almost every individual today. It is the pandemic that has brought businesses, societies, and even countries to a halt as they try to come up with solutions to stop it in its tracks. This has pushed most people around the world to adjust their daily lifestyles including their work-life to match self-isolation recommendations in order to prevent the spread of the virus. As an international student, I’ve needed to adjust my day-to-day activities as I self isolate at my home in Brisbane. I would like to share with you how I go about doing so and some advice on how you as a student can make it through this difficult time.
A long way from home
Being away from our home country for long periods of time is something that all international students have to get used to while studying overseas. However, the current situation has created concerns among students with regards to the health and wellbeing of their family and friends back in their home country. I make it a point to stay in regular contact with my family and friends during these trying times. I feel comforted by the fact that everyone I know is keeping well and doing their part to gradually bring things back to normal. This situation has also given us the time we need to catch up with those who we haven’t been in contact with for long and be there for them during this difficult situation.
In terms of studies, with QUT having moved the delivery of all content to an online-only model for the rest of the semester, it has made it more convenient to self-isolate at home since attending classes in person is no longer an option. However, this has also brought about a new set of challenges such as collaborating on group projects, consulting with tutors, and studying in groups. There are many creative alternative solutions in order to overcome these challenges. I am using various video conferencing and collaboration applications such as Zoom, Trello, and Slack to collaborate with assignment group members, carry out meetings and check-in sessions in order to continue with our assignment to the best of our ability. In addition to that, the coordinators of the units in which I am enrolled have made it much easier to consult with them through methods such as email and Slack which has given me more confidence when working on my assignments.
We’re in this together
It really is a challenging time for us all and it is of utmost importance that everyone makes compromises to a certain extent. It is a time when every single person in the world is experiencing the same thing at the same time. However, we can still find ways to make our lives and work easier while we stay at home. As long as we keep ourselves occupied and stay positive we can come out on the other side of this with a better perspective of life. (See #IntThisTogether on Instagram).
Stay home and do your best
One piece of advice I can give all international students who are currently in Australia is to stay at home, put your head down and keep working hard throughout this difficult time. We have to consider ourselves lucky to have the facilities and benefits which QUT has to offer so that we can still continue with our studies even during a time like this. At the end of the day, our main goal is to do our very best for our family, who have given us the possibility to be here, our friends, who constantly support us and most importantly ourselves, so that we improve day by day, in knowledge and values which will come in handy in the near future.
My top 5 tips
- Stay in contact with your family and friends
- Stay on top of your studies (& use all the technology available)
- Stay occupied (on more than just studies)
- Stay home (and remember your social distancing)
- Stay safe and well
Oh, and by the way, this is a great video of some Qld students…