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Good vibes (for bad days) – Udantha’s story

University of Adelaide international student Udantha finds success during the COVID-19 crisis and shares his experience balancing health, online studies and a work from home BSc internship during the COVID-19 lockdown in Australia.

What are you studying?

I am studying a Bachelor of Science at The University of Adelaide.

How are you finding student life during COVID-19?

Student life has been changed a lot. There are no more interactive lectures, no more face-to-face tutorials and no more socializing with friends at Uni.

The On-Campus study method has changed to an online delivery method. The lecturers and the university continuously rearrange and make efforts to make the remote learning pathway as effective as possible. Recently they started providing live lectures as per our weekly timetable, which I find very engaging.

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What are you struggling with the most?

Balancing study along with completing an Internship from home.

What are your top tips for staying happy and positive, and looking after your mental health?

For me, number one is eating a healthy and balanced diet – this has a big impact to your mental health. Your gut must be totally satisfied during these times.

Second, have a planner to balance work and avoid distractions.

Third, connect regularly with your loved ones through video calls.

Fourth, familiarize yourself with indoor hobbies and activities such as reading, gardening and board games.

And lastly, perform some indoor workouts since your stuck at home and have to be at your working desk for long periods of time.

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What have you learned about yourself?

The main thing that surprised me was that I learned that I can cook some really good dishes. For Easter, I started making a dinner that turned out to be an epic one.

Furthermore, I learned that I have the ability to adapt to any situation! Studying in Sri Lanka in my childhood, I was only used to face-to-face delivery of study. If it wasn't for COVID-19, I would've never come across remote learning pathways.

I struggled a bit during the early weeks, but day by day I got used to it and started to excel in this mode of study.

What hobbies, skills or superpowers have you picked up?

I have developed a lot of cooking skills and tried many recipes throughout the lockdown.

I also got an internship opportunity through the University of Adelaide, which I thought was not possible due to the outbreak. But to my surprise, my university arranged for me to take part in the internship online!

As a result, I developed my working from home skills alongside other skills applicable for a science graduate.

I also started doing some home workouts to keep my health in a good level, and I try to avoid snacking and instead embrace making my own healthy food.

What are you most looking forward to?

To get back to university, socialise with friends and get back to the gym to burn off these COVID-19 calories!


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